On the second leg of the Brent Freeman quarterfinals, IEFC reserves and Fontana Legacy look to enter the semifinals after last month’s 2-1 win for the IEFC second squad. A critical opportunity for the boys in blue to get comeback to get more aggregate goals than IEFC. A simple task and possible chance turned into an awful day at the office for the Fontana side.
Sunday afternoon at Ralph Lewis sports complex was the venue for this knockout game to see who would clinch the semifinals.
The boys in blue followed the game plan and got a great shot from outside the box in the 5th minute that hit the post in response to IEFC’s heavy possession and pass-and-move plays.
IEFC moved forward with their style of play and got two goals in the 9th and 21st minutes off similar dump-and-chase attacks. The gap is now wider for Fontana to reach and win on aggregate, and they had an opportunity to get one back around the 30′ mark.
A counterattack formed after Fontana cleared an IEFC attack that left the defense open. A Fontana player was alone receiving a bouncing ball in the midfield with IEFC defenders shortly behind. Nearing the 40-yard line, an IEFC defender would then bring down the Fontana player, and he gets a direct red for the infraction and preventing a 1v1 for his keeper.
Without much protest, the red-carded player moves to the bench, and now Fontana with the advantage over the 10-man IEFC. However, that advantage didn’t benefit much for the trailing team.
IEFC would respond shortly after with three goals within four minutes, destroying any chance for Fontana to come back. They needed to be faster to react to IEFC’s youthful depth. The first half would end 5-0 (7-1 on aggregate) in favor of IEFC.
At the start of the second half, Fontana looked to keep pride and was determined to finish the 90 mins, finding hope in turning things around with a man advantage. Unfortunately, it gets worse for Legacy as less than 5 minutes into the second half IEFC get their sixth goal from a great individual effort by their forward.
IEFC didn’t let their dominance down, as they would tally on another goal five minutes afterward. The forward gets a bouncing ball beating the other defenders on the right side of the box, and rainbows it over the keeper but falls short. Yet he continues his stride to get his bouncing ball and head taps it in, fending off the Fontana defender near the goal line.
This goal halted the celebration for the boys in red as Legacy defender Victor Rincon contested that 50/50 before the goalline was slow to get up. He claims he has pain in his spine and can’t get up. As memory serves me, it wasn’t a notable or gruesome fall he had when trying to prevent the last goal, but it was a case of falling hard.
Surrounded by teammates, he was also stating he couldn’t get up, which correlated with his spine pain, and logically that would be a call for the medics as both teams had no trainers.
More people surrounded Victor (presumably his family members), waiting for paramedics to arrive. A fan speculated foul play on behalf of the IEFC forward as he claimed he elbowed Victor to win the ball, while others still wonder how the injury occurred as the attention geared away from the match.
The Legacy coach would call for paramedics, and after a discussion with the officials, the game was considered abandoned. Upon meeting with the officials and later confirmed by one of the coaches, the result will hold, and the game ended at the hour mark with a final score of 7-0 (9-1 on aggregate). IEFC moves on to the semifinals in a somber mood following this event, and Fontana Legacy leaves with worry in their minds.
Paramedics arrived to lift Victor on a stretcher and take him to a local hospital. The following day the Legacy coach confirmed that Victor Rincon was out of the hospital, and no other details about his recovery were shared.