Forward Kevin King nets game-winner in 80th minute

Tucson, AZ (Saturday, May 26, 2012) — For a long stretch late in the second half of its 1-0 in over the Pali Blues, FC Tucson was coming up with creative ways not to score a goal.

But after several attacking waves that crashed against the Blues defense, Kevin King finally broke through and netted the game-winner in the 80th minute in front of 634 screaming fans at Kino Sports Complex North, Field #5.

“When (the ball) came across I just decided to bang it,” King said. “I just decided to kick it as hard as possible.”

Added head coach Rick Schantz: “I’m so excited for Kevin. He’s had an up and down season so far. For him to finish that goal the way he did was pretty cool.”

For the first 70 minutes of the game both teams were even in a very physical game that eventually saw five yellows given out.

But in the 72nd minute, FC Tucson’s attack took over. It all began with a King cross into the box that found a sliding Donny Toia, who connected but couldn’t find the net. In the ensuring corner kick at the 73rd minute, Toia had another good opportunity when he headed the ball to the left side of the net. But Pali keeper Flo Sourice made a diving stop to push the ball over the crossbar.

FC Tucson’s attack continued its relentless.

In the 75th minute, King broke free and beat the keeper with nothing but a seemingly open net in front of him. But the Blues’ Justin Valashinas made a diving save of his own to clear the ball. Then in the 77th minute, Donny Toia sent a perfect cross into the box from the right side of the field and found Max Alvarez. But Alvarez couldn’t control the ball and it went wide to the right.

All the attacking finally paid off in the 80th minute. That’s when Alvarez came streaking down the right side of the field into the box. He sent the ball across the front of the net, through a maze of legs before finding King, who punched in the game winner.

“It was definitely a relief,” said King. “Not only for me but for the team and for the fans who were watching. It’s such a joy to get a goal and get the fans involved.”

FC Tucson improves to 3-1-0 with nine points in four games. Pali Blues falls to 0-3-2 with 2 points in five games.

Click here to check out our photo gallery from the game.

Goals:
’80: FC Tucson-Kevin King (Max Alvarez)

Cards:
’27: Pali Blues-Justin Saul (Yellow)
’33: Pali Blues-Sam Nicholson (Yellow)
’53: Pali Blues-Scott Moll (Yellow)
’62: Pali Blues-Cody Shelton (Yellow)
’81: FC Tucson-Phillipe Garre (Yellow)
’90: FC Tucson-Kareem Smith (Yellow)

Starters
FC Tucson
GK Brendon Roslund
M Reid Schmitt
D Conor Spence
M Colin Anderson
M Thomas Iwasaki
F Donny Toia
F Max Alvarez
D Mike Krauss
M Dom Papa
D Kareem Smith
D Travis Campbell

Pali Blues
GK Flo Sourice
D Justin Valashinas
D Scott Moll
D Sam Nicholson
D Cody Shelton
M Ben Nicholson
M Jordan Tabor
M Justin Saul
M Antonio Vernaschi
F Thomas Conale
F Omar Nuno