HIGHLIGHTS: HFX Wanderers FC vs. Pacific FC (August 20, 2022)
The Halifax Wanderers picked up a second straight victory over Pacific FC, this time 1-0 at home. Pacific played the majority of the match with 10 men after Manny Aparicio was sent off in the 28th minute.
After 18 shot attempts, Halifax was finally able to find a breakthrough in the 82nd minute as Pierre Lamothe’s curling strike found the back of the net, his second of the season. It was also a second clean sheet of the year for Keiran Baskett in the Halifax net.
Halifax troubled Pacific keeper Emil Gazdov a few times in the early going. First, a looping free-kick forced the 18-year-old to claim the ball close to his own line. Zachary Fernandez then forced Gazdov to knock his cross behind for a corner moment later.
Fernandez looked to have created another opportunity in the 12th minute when his excellent cross found Eriks Santos alone in the box off of a corner kick. The Halifax centreback, however, rushed the change and headed over the net.
Pacific’s first real moment of danger came in the 22nd minute, as Marco Bustos’ inswinging freekick led to a number of chances for the visitors, none of which truly troubled Baskett in the Halifax net.
Bustos then came close again two minutes late after some brilliant interplay from Pacific, but his low curling shot was deflected slightly by Peter Schaale and behind for a corner.
The trajectory of the match changed in a big way in the 28th minute, however, as Pacific’s Aparicio was sent off after a hard collision with Cory Bent. It was Aparicio’s second red card of the season, having also been sent off in Pacific’s June 30’s 3-3 draw with Cavalry. In the aftermath, both Marco Bustos and Sean Young were given yellow cards, while Pacific assistant coach Armando Sá was sent off as well for dissent.
Pacific still found a way forward, however, as Cédric Toussaint, making his first start for Pacific and first CPL appearance since joining from York United, played a brilliant through-ball to Kamron Habibullah. The young Pacific attacker’s low shot was well saved by Baskett, however.
Much like they did to start the half, Halifax came close again from a freekick, as this time it was leading scorer Sam Salter who challenged Gazdov but the young keeper once again stood his ground. While the two sides left the pitch with an unequal amount of players, they did so with an equal amount of goals as, after all of the chaos of the opening 45, it remained 0-0.
Halifax squandered yet another chance in the 55th minute, as an attempted through-ball deflected off of Pacific defender Jordan Haynes and into the path of Lamothe but the Halifax midfielder dragged his shot wide.
Looking to shore things up defensively, Pacific coach James Merriman elected to make a pair of changes in the 56th minute, bringing on fullback Nathan Mavila and Gianni dos Santos in place of Djenairo Daniels and Kamron Habibullah.
The middle part of the half saw wave after wave of Halifax attack as they hemmed in the visitors in front of an outstanding atmosphere at Wanderers Grounds.
At long last, they found their goal in the 81st minute as Hernadez found Lamothe at the top of the box. The Pacific midfielder’s stunning curling effort beat Gazdov to give Halifax a 1-0 lead.
Salter nearly doubled the lead in the 87th minute from close range, but Gazdov, who had an outstanding match in net for Pacific stopped his low strike.
Pacific has still yet to win a match in Halifax. The loss ended a six-match unbeaten run, and five straight matches with a win in CPL action for the visitors.
81′ — Pierre Lamothe (HFX Wanderers)
28′ — Red: Manny Aparicio (Pacific FC)
30′ — Yellow: Marco Bustos (Pacific FC)
31′ — Yellow: Sean Young (Pacific FC)
40′ — Yellow: Abdoulaye Samaké (Pacific FC)
68′ — Yellow: Peter Schaale (HFX Wanderers)
71′ — Yellow: Mo Omar (HFX Wanderers)