The Fort Lauderdale Strikers traveled to Toyota Field, the new home of the San Antonio Scorpions, and came up short by a final of 3-1 on Saturday, May 18.
The Scorpions struck quickly in the first minute when Esteban Bayona headed a cross toward goal which Strikers' goalkeeper Jeff Attinella blocked, but the rebound fell to Javier Saavedra, who tucked it home for the lead.
"We had to play catch up and just weren’t good enough tonight," said Strikers head coach Daryl Shore. "They put us under pressure and we didn’t handle it well enough."
Following the early goal, play settled down between the two sides. The Strikers arguably produced the better chances, even though first-time starter in net for the Scorpions, Jeremy Vuolo, wasn't required to make any big saves. The best chances coming from interplays between Fort Lauderdale's attacking group of Walter Restrepo, Mark Anderson and Jemal Johnson.
The second half saw a flurry of goals when both teams combined for three tallies in five minutes. San Antonio got the better of the exchanges and extended their lead to 3-1.
The Scorpions' Luka Vucko scored in the 53rd minute after deflecting a free kick from Saavedra. Then Fort Lauderdale's Scott Gordon poked home a score off of a scramble in front of the net following a corner kick.
The game's final score came from an own goal when a deflected cross came low in front of the goal line and Gordon was unable to stop his momentum from hitting the ball into his own net.
The match saw several hard challenges following San Antonio's third goal as the referee handed out four yellow cards and six total on the night.
The team next returns home to face the Laredo Heat in the 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Tuesday, May 21.