Late tally from Fafinski sinks Ridgebacks
TORONTO - A late tally from Rams midfielder Sean Fafinski gave Ryerson a 2-1 victory over the UOIT Ridgebacks in their season opener on Saturday afternoon.
Fafinski entered the game with about ten minutes left to play in a 1-1 draw and immediately made his mark. His second career OUA goal in the 87th minute gave the Rams the late advantage which they were able to close out for the win.
“Sean’s a guy that plays years above his age,” said head coach Filip Prostran following the game. “He’s come in and played in big games last year so he knows what this is about and he knows what an opening game is. He came in and gave a really calming presence, distributed the ball well, and the strike at the end was impressive.”
The Rams opened the scoring early in a rainy affair when Abdallah El-Chanti was able to find some space with speed and break through before sliding the ball past the UOIT keeper. The tally came just eight minutes into the match.
The lead held only until the 23rd minute, however, when Ridgebacks striker George Meditskos leveled the score. A UOIT winger managed to draw two Rams defenders to him before slipping the ball over to Meditskos who curled in his first goal of the year.
After a tie score at the half, the Rams really turned up the pressure after the 60 minute mark. Muaz Saleh, Mirza Custovic, and Akibul Hoque all had great chances to score the go-ahead goal, but they were all turned aside or sent wide.
Fafinski’s late marker seemed to deflate the Ridgebacks who put forth a valiant game plan and thought they may come away from the match with at least a draw and a point in the standings.
“There’s something to be said about the first game. I thought [UOIT] did a great job and had a great strategy against us…and I think we were fortunate to get out of there with the win. We didn’t play our best, but sometimes that happens,” said Prostran.
Ryerson will look forward to Sunday’s match against the Trent Excalibur which kicks off at 3:30 p.m. at Downsview Park.