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Who told you last Friday's match against Charleston was going to be the biggest and toughest regular-season battle in the history of Frontier?

The score 

Sedgewick the savior

Last time out. Who told you last Friday's match against Charleston was going to be the biggest and toughest regular-season battle in the history of Frontier? The Score did, and that's why you should read this column aloud with your family before Sunday dinner each week. Things looked truly dismal for the Rhinos when Ryan Trout scored in the 74th minute, especially considering how incredibly close the first 45 minutes were. I mean, it's not like anyone was counting on Billy Sedgewick to come off the bench and score another huge late-game goal, like he did against Pittsburgh the week before, but that's just what that wacky guy did one minute before time expired. Jimmy Tanner added the winner in the 100th while everyone who left the stadium early pummeled the crap out of their dashboards as they listened on the radio during their drive back to the ’burbs.

            I'm not saying Coach Ercoli is the Miracle Worker or anything, but as downright questionable as his subs have seemed at the time of actual substitution, they've paid off like nobody's business. Of the Rhinos’ four goals, three were scored (and two were assisted) by players who didn't start. Yeah, maybe it only seemed like yanking Mali Walton, who got schooled by Trout all night long, was the obvious choice to come out first. Perhaps replacing 8-foot forward Greg Simmonds with 4-foot midfielder Temoc Suarez only seemed like a crazy thing to do with zeroes on the board. It all worked out, though, and that's all that matters... until it doesn't work.

 

Next up. The 2-0-0 Rhinos (10 points, 1st place in Northeast Division) travel to Charlotte to take on the Eagles (3-0-3, 13 points, 4th place in Southeast Division) and Canandaigua Academy graduate Andy Guastaferro. Charlotte is led by Jose Gomez (2 goals, 3 assists, 7 points) and Dustin Swinehart (3+1=7), the latter of whom was second in A-League scoring in 2001. Swinehart has scored in each of the Eagles' three wins this season, so if the Rhinos can shut him down... well, they'll still have to contend with other comically monikered guys like Pinch, Mouw, and Norkus. Craig Demmin's brother Dwayne anchors Charlotte's backline, which held the Rhinos scoreless in a 1-0 loss last season in the only meeting the two clubs have ever had.

 

The Hall of Shame. It really looked like former Rhino Henry Gutierrez had turned over a new leaf. He didn't resemble the Michelin Man when he played for Pittsburgh in the Rhinos opener, and he actually went four whole matches without receiving any cautions. That all changed this past weekend when the Riverhounds got spanked by Richmond and Gutierrez was sent off after earning his second yellow card of the match. Then, according to completely unreliable sources, he sat under the bleachers and ate 11 hot dogs.

 

Speaking of former Rhinos. Carlos Parra saw his first action of the 2002 campaign and netted the game-winning golden goal in the 103rd off of a free kick as 5-0-0 Atlanta downed Montreal last Saturday. Eduardo Sebrango was the only scorer for Montreal.

Rhinos Soccer

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