News release – Simcoe County Rovers FC
This past weekend saw the Simcoe County Rovers travel to Mattamy Sports Park to face North Mississauga. With 5 games left in the 2023 League 1 season, the team is vying for a top-two finish to secure a bye into the semi-finals and a home match, or a top 4 finish and a quarterfinals home match at J.C. Massie Field.
The Rovers came out with purpose and attacked from the opening whistle. Playing as a false #9, midfielder Paul Karagianakos scored just 1 minute into the game and the Rovers never looked back. They scored three more times in the first half with Karagianakos scoring two more to collect his hat trick before the halftime whistle blew. Sandwiched between those strikes was another goal scored by Orlendis Benitez-Hernandez with his team-leading 12th goal of the season.
The team went into the break with a comfortable 4-0 lead. As the second half resumed Karagianakos scored his 4th goal of the game in the 56th minute. North Mississauga pulled one back in the 62nd minute but could not muster any more offence and the Rovers won comfortably 5-1. The Rovers move to 11-4-1 on the season and are in a dog fight for second place with Vaughn Azzurri and Blue Devils FC for 2nd spot in the standings with four games left in the season.
“Very pleased with the win against North Mississauga and our approach to the game,” said Coach Jason Beckford. The dominant first half allowed us to look at some of our younger players in the 2nd half, which was very positive.”
“The performance sets us up nicely for the Blue Devils game. We respect them as a team and what they’ve been to League 1 over the years. However, we are looking forward to the challenge and putting in a good performance.”
The men travel to Oakville to face Blue Devils FC on Sunday, August 6th at 4.00 pm for a match with huge implications in the standings.
The Rovers are the highest-scoring team in the league, having scored 47 goals in their 16 league games thus far with 21 against. The team is hopeful their attacking brand of football will carry them to a strong finish and into the playoffs. Attacking midfielder Orlendis Benitez Hernandez leads the way with 13 goals and 8 assists this season. This correlates to a goal contribution every 65 minutes, an outstanding accomplishment by one of the most dynamic players in the League.
Striker Jevontae Layne has 10 goals and 1 assist this season and has worked tirelessly to create space for himself while creating opportunities for his teammates. His work rate and pressure on the ball has been commendable all season long.
Winger Ijah Halley has 4 goals and 6 assists, and his devasting pace has caused havoc for opposing team defences all season long. His speed is a constant threat, and he has provided great service cutting in from the wing to find players in the box to convert their opportunities.
For more information on the Simcoe County Rovers FC, including schedule details, ticket purchase options and sponsorship opportunities, please visit www.roversfc.ca.
Banner image via the Simcoe County Rovers FC