Greenville SC - As the calendar turned to September, the Greenville Triumph took their first step to put a rough August behind them with a 3-0 throttling of Toronto FC II at Legacy Early College on Saturday night. The victory marked Greenville's first win since July 4th and provided a huge shot in the arm to the playoff hopes of the defending League One champions.
A different Greenville Triumph team came out of the locker room on Saturday, setting a blistering pace from first whistle that was reminiscent of the team that started the season undefeated through six matches. Forward JJ Donnelly struck in just the fourth minute, scoring a brilliant volley after a great service by Allen Gavilanes. Not to be outdone, co-captain Aaron Walker controlled a poor header from a Toronto defender at the top of the box, ripping a left-footed shot that put Greenville up 2-0 just two minutes after Donnelly's goal.
Holding a 2-0 lead coming out of the locker room, Greenville kept going at the Toronto defense, carrying over head coach John Harkes' strategy from the training ground this week to target Toronto in transition. In the 68th minute, a streaking Aaron Walker fired a shot that deflected off a Toronto defender and rolled past the helpless keeper for his second of the night.
Greenville held the 3-0 lead for the rest of the match, even through a scuffle in stoppage time that saw goalkeeper Dallas Jaye receive a red card. With Greenville out of subs, midfielder Max Hemmings donned the red jersey as an emergency keeper and preserved the shutout for the home side.
Triumph SC continues their homestand next Saturday, September 11, as they face the Chattanooga Red Wolves at 7:00 PM. The club will honor Upstate military, first responders & their families, designating the match as Heroes Night.