Just two days after being destroyed by Mississippi, the Central Florida Kraze salvaged some pride by jumping up a slot in the Premier Development League standings in their final game of the season.
Jhojan Obando couldn't seem to stop much coming at the net against the undefeated Mississippi Brilla (11-0-3) on July 22. Meanwhile the Brilla teed off on shots, launching a total of 14, half of which penetrated. Brilla forward Moses Aduny only took three shots, but two of them would score.
The Kraze (6-5-3) struggled to keep up the fierce offensive pace, hammering a goal off the foot of John Sosa in the 19th minute to bring the Kraze within a goal of a tie, and then one from Sergei Raad at the 37th minute. After that, it was all Brilla, who scored three unanswered goals in the second half to win 7-2.
The scoring wasn't nearly as high in the Kraze's game against New Orleans (6-6-2) on July 24, but the game was even wilder, with two of the Kraze's top scorers, Raad and Sosa, earning red cards in the second half.
That may have taken the wind out of the Kraze's sails in the second half, particularly with the Jesters' tying goal coming after Raad's ejection.
But the Kraze still managed to hold on for the win, with Obando allowing only one goal while stopping five.
On offense, the Kraze again struggled, taking only nine shots in the game, while the Jesters got off 12.
For the Kraze, another season narrowly above .500 leaves some unanswered questions. Can they score? With injections of offensive fire including the late season addition of speedy Jowayne Laidley, Coach Joe Avallone is optimistic about the future.
"We've got a great team for the future," Avallone said. "I'm really looking forward to seeing this team develop."