Gary Boughton scored a goal and was named first star on his night. (Photo courtesy of the Lancers)
HENRIETTA, N.Y . — The Rochester Lancers gave retiring co-captain Gary Boughton the proper send off by winning their first game of the season on Saturday night.
Led by two goals apiece from head coach Doug Miller and Jeremy Ortiz, the Lancers recorded a 9-7 victory over the Kansas City Comets in Major Arena Soccer League action in a memorable and emotional night at the Dome Arena. Matt D’Amico, Bryan Wolanski, Tim Crawford, Andriy Demydiv and Boughton, a Buffalo, N.Y. native will retire at the end of this season, also scored in Rochester’s (1-21) final home game of the season.
Boughton, who has played with the club since the 2011-12 Major Indoor Soccer League season, was selected as the No. 1 star of the match.
The opening quarter went back and forth. Comets player-coach Leo Gibson, who tallied six goals in a home win over the Lancers last month, lifted the visitors into a 1-0 lead at 2:13. D’Amico tied it at 6:46. Adam Lucas put Kansas City into a 2-1 edge at 8:47 before Wolanski knotted things up at 10:43.
KC again grabbed the lead, this time on an Igancio Flores score at 6:51 of the second period, but the Lancers equalized yet again at 3-3 on a Miller goal at 9:06. That tally started a four-goal surge for the Lancers, who never relinquished the lead. Crawford found the net at 14:07 as the hosts entered the locker with a 4-3 advantage.
The Lancers padded their lead by striking twice in a row early in the third quarter behind Demydiv and Ortiz at 13:20 and 14:19, respectively, before the Comets pulled without 6-4 at 14:41 behind Gui Gomes.
Rochester opened the fourth period with two consecutive scores by Miller (1:58) and Boughton ((4:06) for an 8-4 bulge and the hosts never looked back. The Comets scored three goals down the stretch — by Gomes, John Sosa and Robert Palmer, sandwiched around Ortiz’s second score as the Lancers held off the visitors’ late charge.
After this weekend’s action, the Lancers have two more games remaining this season. They visit Utica City FC on Sunday, March 15 at 2 p.m. and then the Orlando Seawolves in their finale on Sunday, March 22 at 3:05 p.m.
Both games can be seen on MASL.TV.