Thursday, April 06, 2006

Rhinos Bounce Back, Defeat Tarheels 3-1

After dropping their first friendly of the spring season yesterday to Charleston, the Rochester Rhinos bounced back to beat the UNC Tarheels 3-1 in a friendly tonight at SAS Soccer Park. Yesterday's goal scorer Johnny Menyongar continued to impress as he fed Jonathan Bolaños who easily beat US U-20 National Team keeper Justin Hughes in the 7th minute. The Rhinos had the better part of the game for the first 15 minutes of play until last year's NCAA quarterfinalist Tarheels realized that they could play at the Rhinos tempo. UNC's midfield of Ben Hunter and Scott Campbell started to drive more and more play at the Rhinos young defense until in the 24th minute US U-20 National Team forward Corey Ashe split the defense on a through ball and chipped the onrushing Patrick Hannigan to level the score at 1-1. The rest of the first half was very evenly contested with most of the play bottled up in midfield. The Rhinos did manage to get forward a few times through Menyongar and several nice overlapping runs by Scott Palguta out of the left back position. Finally, just a minute before halftime the Rhinos went ahead for good when Menyongar notched his second assist of the night by feeding Matthew Delicâte who finished well past a stranded Hughes. Coach Calloway made plenty of substitutions at halftime while UNC continued primarily with their starting eleven. Fatigue began to show and a good portion of the second half was played in the Rhinos end. On about 60 minutes played, Charles Gbeke broke loose down the left side and fed a nice cross-box pass to Neil Dombrowski who just curled his shot wide of the right post. A quarter of an hour later, Gbeke beat the defense again and was denied on a wonderful diving challenge by Justin Hughes. Finally, with the referee checking his watch for fulltime, Rey Angel Martinez laid a gorgeous pass into the path of former Duke standout Danny Kramer who scored one last time against his rival Tarheels to bring the evening to a close. The Rhinos finish their spring training camp in Cary tomorrow night with a 7:30pm contest against the Atlanta Silverbacks. Pictures from tonight's game are available on my Flickr stream.

-- Jarrett @ 4/06/2006 08:50:00 PM


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