The signing of Landon Donavan by the San Diego Sockers shocked not just the indoor soccer world, but the sporting world in general. The coverage the Sockers got was monumental for the MASL. So, the Ontario Fury naturally wanted their cut of the action.
They got the attention they wanted by signing Jermaine Jones who, like Donavan, spent some time on the international scene by playing in a World Cup, specifically the 2014 World Cup. Of course, the signing wasn’t just a PR stunt; the Fury expected him to play as he did in years past.
Against the Sockers, he did just that, netting a hat trick and leading an Ontario charge that almost broke the San Diego defense.
Starting in the first quarter, Jones struck in the last second, taking advantage of a scattered Sockers defense to hit a right-footed strike over the head of Boris Pardo and into the net for the first goal of the game.
A ferocious attack from the Sockers in the second quarter, however, caught the Fury off guard to slingshot San Diego back on top. On a power play, Leonardo De Oliviera threaded a pass to Brandon Escoto, and the energetic scorer took care of the rest, tapping the ball into the back of the net to tie up the game. Goals by Kraig Chiles and Cesar Cerda pushed the Sockers lead up to two goals by the end of the second quarter.
Breaking the chain of goals was the international man himself Jones, striking from just outside the box to net his second goal. Another three-goal chain was connected by San Diego after, with De Oliviera starting the streak with a shot that went to the right of Ontario keeper Chris Toth and into the back of the net. Seconds later, Christian Gutierrez took a pot shot from his own side of the pitch towards the goal and dropped the ball over Toth’s head and into the goal. For reference, Gutierrez’ shot carried over three-fourths of the field and had enough hang time to go over the head of a leaping Toth.
Christian Segura’s goal in the eleventh minute during a power play made the score 6-2, but in the MASL, bo four-goal lead is safe. Evan McNeley put a halt to the scoring streak with a goal in the third and, going into the fourth quarter; Jones again found the goal for the third time to secure his hat trick.
With the Fury now in desperation mode, the Sockers’ weren’t able to adjust quick enough and paid the price for it, as goals by Juan Carlos Gonzales and Maicon De Abreu tied the game up in the fourth quarter with five minutes to play. Citizen’s Business Bank Arena was loud after their home team scored four unanswered goals and motivated their players to go for the goal of snapping the Sockers’ lengthy winning streak, but the crowd was brought to a hush when Eddie Velez’ outran a Fury defender and chipped a goal over Toth to retake the lead for San Diego.
For the Sockers, the silence was golden. The only cheering being done was by the players in blue themselves, especially after a Travis Pittman goal put the Sockers ahead by two goals. Open-net goals by Juan Gonzales and Cesar Cerda drove the dagger into Ontario’s heart, and San Diego left the arena winners of their 19th straight game.