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Game Recaps presented by Wells Fargo

CHARLOTTE, NC (June 4, 2016) – The Charlotte Independence on Saturday night came away with a 2-2 draw against Toronto FC II in a match shortened to 73 minutes because of severe weather.

The Independence started off strong with high pressure and possession in the final third. This lead to a strong shot by Zach Pfeffer that was saved by TFCII keeper Alex Bono. The Independence also was able to create ample opportunities from Jack Metcalf’s crosses, but none found the back of the net.

In the 20th minute TFCII took control of the game as Shaan Hundal dribbled past a defender and around the keeper, then passed the ball into the back of the net. The Independence started to struggle with keeping the ball out of their own half and in the 36th minute they gave up a penalty. Malik Johnson placed his penalty kick straight to the left side of the goal giving Toronto a 2-0 lead.

“In the first half we just didn’t have a real push,” said Independence Head Coach Mike Jeffries. “There was no urgency, no intensity.” Jeffries decided to make three substations to start the second half, bringing Brian Brown on for Caleb Calvert, Christopher Hellmann on for Zach Pfeffer and Yann Ekra on for Lewis Hilton.

The changes worked and the Independence came back fighting in the second half. In the 47th minute Jorge Herrera cut the lead with a goal off a cross that was served into the box. The Independence gained energy from this goal and in the 56th minute Hellmann got on the end of a through ball to send another cross into Herrera. Herrera then scored his second goal of the night bringing the game to a 2-2 draw.

In the 71st minute Independence keeper John Berner was put to the test and came up with the Wells Fargo Save of the Game as he dove on top of the ball and preserved the 2-2 score. Shortly after this save, in the 73rd minute, lightning was spotted in the area followed by a heavy rain. The game was delayed for 90 minutes before officials had to make the decision to call it.

The Independence (5-3-3) continue their three-game home stand next Friday, June 10, against expansion club Bethlehem Steel FC (3-3-4). The Steel last played against the Rochester Rhinos on Saturday, May 28, and came out with a 2-2 draw. Kickoff between the Independence and Steel is scheduled for 7:00pm ET at Ramblewood Stadium.

— compiled by Vanessa Quinones, Charlotte Independence



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