Weather delays, defensive struggles mar Triumph loss to Tormenta
Greenville, SC- A match plagued with weather delays only made the night longer for the Greenville Triumph, as a poor defensive showing led to a 3-1 loss for the league-leading side on Saturday night at Triumph Stadium against South Georgia Tormenta FC. Despite sitting atop the League One standings, Greenville ended their three-match regular season series against Tormenta without a win against their geographical rival.
An extended weather delay postponed the match for nearly two hours, eventually kicking off at 8:45 PM. Greenville spent the first 20 minutes fiercely attacking the Tormenta net. However, the Tormenta goalkeeper, Pablo Jara and goal frame made a handful of critical saves to keep the match scoreless. Midway through the half, Greenville conceded two goals just three minutes apart, as quick counterattacks caught the Triumph off-guard. Motivated to return fire, Tormenta’s 2-0 lead was quickly halved by the Golden Boot Leader himself, Jacob Labovitz. Labovitz recorded his eleventh goal this season off a corner kick from winger, Allen Gavilanes. The remainder of the half concluded with the score board unchanged.
Both sides scurried back onto the pitch for the second half with approaching storm clouds threatening in the distance. Five minutes into the second half, Don Smart conceded a foul just outside the Greenville 18-yard box. Tormenta took advantage of the free kick and recorded their third goal after the shot snuck through Jesus Ibarra and the Greenville wall. In the 52nd minute, lightning in the area forced the match to pause and sent both squads back to the locker rooms for another weather delay. Tensions boiled over for both teams in the final minutes of stoppage time, as a shoving match broke out before the night ended 1-3 in favor of the away side.