The Long Island Rough Riders continued their perfect start to the 2017 PDL season with a 5-0 victory against FC Boston on Saturday evening at Cy Donnelly Stadium on the campus of St. Anthony’s High School.
Forward Tyler Arnone scored twice in the game’s first seven minutes, and Stephen Roche, Daniel Bedoya and Harrison Weilbacher each had a goal as the Rough Riders, exclusive PDL affiliate of New York City FC, scored five goals for the second consecutive game. Long Island has outscored opponents 10-1.
“The offense is on fire right now,” said Arnone, who leads the team with four goals. “It’s unexpected to be clicking and firing on all cylanders this early in the season, but it’s a credit to the core group of guys the Rough Riders were able to keep around — we’re all guys from Long Island and this isn’t our first year playing together.”
Long Island (2-0-0, 6 points) got on the scoreboard in the game’s first minute thanks to a penalty kick after Bedoya’s cross from the left side was played by an FC Boston defender with his hand. Arnone stepped up to the spot and calmly scored to give the home side a 1-0 lead.
The duo would be instrumental in the next goal a mere six minutes later. Bedoya’s throughball slipped in past the back line as Arnone deked the goalkeeper and tapped the ball into the net. Long Island kept its foot on the pedal, extending the advantage to three in the 42nd minute. Arthur Bosua played a diagonal ball from the left to Roche in space on the right. The midfielder darted toward the near post to beat the goalie.
Long Island led 3-0 at halftime.
Bedoya added a goal to his statline in the 47th minute when the ball fell to the forward who smashed a shot from distance into the far corner for a 4-0 lead.
Weilbacher scored a header to make it 5-0 in the 85th minute off a corner kick from Junior Rosero after the Bolts were reduced to 10 men in the 79th following a reckless challenge from behind on Arnone.
The Rough Riders are idle next weekend before embarking on a three-game road trip beginning Wednesday, May 31 at the Westchester Flames. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. at City Park.
“With a stretch of away games you take it one game at a time,” Arnone said. “We have a veteran group so I’m sure we’re going to play intelligent football and still implement the same way we’re trying to play by taking it to teams. Full steam ahead.
“This club has a lot of history in it and when we step on the field we represent one of the top teams in the PDL so we should play like that. We’re going to approach every game like we’re going to win and try to grab as many points as we can.”