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Toledo Villa FC Drops First Road Contest of Season

By Jon Siccote, 06/18/23, 6:45AM HST


Sanfeliu Scores Lone Goal in 3-1 Loss to Cleveland Force SC

Despite his fifth goal of the season in as many contests, Jacobo Sanfeliu's single tally was all that Toledo Villa FC could muster on Saturday in Cleveland in a 3-1 loss. It was Toledo's first road defeat of the season.

The loss did not drop Toledo from second place in the Valley Division of USL2 as Villa (3-2-1) sits on 10 points at the halfway point of the season. The top two teams in the division at the end of the season advance to the playoffs. They will host last-place Dayton Dutch Lions (1-5-1) at 7 p.m. this Saturday, June 24 at Paul Hotmer Field on the campus of the University of Toledo.

"We have to make sure that we're focused, that we're locked in and we're doing the defensive side consistently all the time," said head coach Matt Johnson. "I thought we had good moments in possession and we did some good things on the ball [against Cleveland]. But in terms of chances created and in terms of goalscoring moments, we didn't control those very well."

Cole Werthmuller notched a first-half brace to help secure the win for Cleveland.

At Disanto Field on the campus of Case Western Reserve, Cleveland took the lead in the 20th minute with Werthmuller's first score.

A pass by Toledo defender Flavio Cruz was intercepted at midfield by a Force player and played up the right side. Iñaki Moreno sent a long cross into the box that found the head of Werthmuller who connected and got it past the outstretched leg of Georgios Theodoulides for a 1-0 lead.

""Cleveland was very dangerous on counters," Johnson explained. "We talked about that a little bit going into it. And we had to be vigilant about that and to deal with their kind of pace up front and their quality on the counter.

"We didn't do a great job of that."

Toledo was able to respond quickly to tie it back up. In the 25th, Cam Territo's shot from outside the 18-yard box was denied, but it landed at the feet of Sanfeliu, who corralled the ball and spun around at the penalty spot with a right foot that connected.
A heads-up play after a foul by Ryan Dagelman got the second goal of the match for Cleveland in the 34th.
On the restart, a Cleveland defender quickly kicked a deep ball down the field from their own third and Werthmuller was able to run under it, gain his footing and find the lower corner to Theodoulides's left to give Cleveland the one-goal edge at the half.

A throw-in from the touchline in the 66th minute into the box found the head of Gavin Csiszar to make it 3-1 and Toledo spent the rest of the match attempting to find a second goal to no avail.

"I thought we did a decent job of controlling the game, but we just didn't do a good job of managing their counter attacks," Johnson said. "I think some of that is down to the quality that Cleveland has, but some of it's also down to us.

"It's 90 minutes that you have to be focused and to be ready for those moments."