HENRIETT, N.Y. — One-time Rochester Lancers standout Joey Tavernese recorded four goals and an assist against his former team as the Florida Tropics posted a 17-4 victory in Major Arena Soccer League action before a sellout crowd at the Dome Arena on Friday night.
Ricardo Carvalho contributed a hat-trick and two assists and Zach Reget, Victor Parreiras and Matt Clare added two goals apiece for Tropics (6-1), who lead the Eastern Division. Former Rochester Rhino and Lancer Antonio Manfut finished with a goal and four assists. Florida, which recorded a season-high 17 goals, is considered one of the best, if not the finest team, in the league.
Tim Crawford and Daniel Reger tallied their first goals of the season for Rochester (0-7) and Alex Harling and Anthony Rozzano added scores.
A spirited Lancers side dominated the first half of the opening quarter, but it was the Tropics that grabbed a 3-0 advantage after the period. Rochester nearly struck twice as Jeremy Ortiz forced goalkeeper Brett Petricek to make a spectacular save at 4:37 before the midfielder drilled a shot off the left post after his free kick at 7:06.
Only 18 seconds after that close encounter, Florida tallied as Carvalho scored from the top of the penalty arc for a 1-0 edge. The visitors doubled it on a goal by Manfut, whose shot trickled in under goalkeeper Brian Wilkin at 9:52. Reget, off a long pass by Petricek, the first of his two assists, beat Wilkin on the near right side for a three-goal advantage at 11:17.
Florida added to its lead in the second quarter as Regat tallied his second goal, off a Manfut assist on the left side at 1:34. Crawford slotted the ball home off a Gary Boughton feed into the lower right corner to slice the margin to 4-1 at 2:59. Carvalho, however, struck for his second of the half from close range at 8:58. Joey Tavernese, who played with the Lancers from 2012-15, scored a power-play goal at 13:16 before former Rhino Drew Ruggles connected for his first score of the season at 14:45 for a 7-1 halftime lead.
At halftime, Rochester head coach Doug Miller replaced Wilkin with Christian Esposito in the net, but Florida kept on pushing hard as Tavernese scored twice and Guilherme Dos Santos and Carvalho added single tallies in the third period. For Rochester, Harling tapped home a pass from Peter Dilorenzo at 3:40 and Rozzano scored unassisted at 8:28.
The Tropics scored seven goals in the fourth quarter, while Reger found the back of the net off a header for the hosts at 9:50.
The Lancers’ home weekend continues Saturday as they will meet the Harrisburg Heat at the Dome Arena with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff.
Tickets still can be purchased at www.RLancers.com or at the Dome Arena box office.
If you can’t make it to the game, you can watch it on MASL.TV.
Rochester will take a week off before getting back into action again on Sunday, Jan. 19, when they visit the Heat at the Farm Show Arena in Harrisburg, Pa. at 5:05 p.m.