It was a tightly contested matchup that would come down to the wire in the first game of day two of the 2023 OPDL Cup Finals when Hamilton United Elite took on Markham City in the Girls U17 division on Sunday at the Ontario Soccer Centre.
The first half between the two sides had plenty of shots, but was void of any clear goal scoring chances as both teams controlled and defended well. The halftime stats showed Hamilton with nine total shots with three on target, one corner, four fouls and no cautions. Markham on the other hand had seven shots with three on target, no corners, four fouls and one caution.
Markham’s best chance of the half came in the 27th minutes on a direct free kick from Sofia Ferrante that was spilled by Hamilton Goalkeeper Fiona Barkovic, but she was able to corral the ball as onrushing forwards attempted to pounce on the loose ball. Hamilton would be awarded a free kick moments later in the 32nd minute, which Jian Sweiss would convert to give them the lead. The score would remain 1-0 Hamilton through the end of the first half.
Markham eventually equalized in the 58th minute when Kayla Gaynor tapped in a cross. The game would remain tied 1-1 until the end of regulation time.
In extras, Markham completed the comeback when Ferrante made up for her earlier chance and found the back of the net, lacing a cross from the top of the box past Barkovic. With the win, Markham are the 2023 OPDL Cup Girls U17 champions.
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