CINCINNATI — The Rochester Lancers squandered a three-goal lead in the fourth quarter and suffered a disappointing 6-5 defeat to the Cincinnati Swerve at Game Time Center Saturday night.
Richardo Israel scored his second goal of the night with 4:09 left in the Major Arena Soccer League 2 game to snap a 5-5 deadlock.
The loss left the Lancers (4-3) tied with the Detroit Waza Flo (4-3) for second place in the Eastern Division with five games remaining in the regular season. Rochester visits Detroit Sunday evening in a must-win situation for both sides in their quest to reach the playoffs. Only two Eastern teams will make the postseason and the first-place Chicago Mustangs (7-1) are in the driver’s seat. Cincinnati improved to 3-5.
The Lancers grabbed a seemingly safe 5-2 advantage on Luis Hidalgo Enrique’s goal with 13:59 remaining in the fourth period before just about everything but the Game Time Center roof fell on them.
Saliou Diop tallied the first of his two goals with 9:59 to go before Emmanuel Adjei pulled the hosts within a goal with 8:40 remaining. Diop equalized with 4:39 left before Israel struck only 30 seconds later.
After Kalu Abass, off an Eduardo Zavala assist gave Cincy a 1-0 lead with 11:31 to go in the first period, the Lancers took command of the match, connecting for four consecutive scores for a 4-1 lead.
They were scored by Anthony Rozzano (11:31 left in the second period), Michael Cunningham (5:55 to go in the second), Jayme Kapinos (28 seconds remaining in the second) and Austin Gerber (12:02 remaining in the third).
Israel scored his first of the match 49 seconds into the fourth quarter, only 12 seconds before Enrique had give the Lancers a 5-2 bulge.