Fourth quarter rally fizzles as Tropics fall to Milwaukee, 7-5

by Brian Ackley

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin -- A furious fourth-quarter rally fell short Saturday night in Milwaukee as the Wave scored twice the game's final three minutes for a 7-5 Major Arena Soccer League win.

The Tropics, down 5-2, rallied with three straight goals to start the fourth, but Marcio Leite got the game winner with under three minutes to go before Ian Bennett added his second of the night with just over a minute to go while Florida was playing with a sixth attacker.

Milwaukee, getting three points in the standing for a regulation win, moves four points ahead of the Tropics for first in the Eastern Division. as well as the Baltimore Blast who each have 29 points. Florida has the tiebreaker currently for second based on having nine regulation time wins, and Baltimore eight.  Each have played 18  of 24 regular season games, while Milwaukee has played one less than both, but will make that game in hand up Sunday when they travel to St. Louis to meet the Ambush. 

After giving up goals 48 seconds apart midway through the first, Kiel Williams and Breno Olivera scored 18 seconds apart midway through the second to make it a 2-2 game at the half.

Florida's Drew Ruggles then scored twice in the first three minutes of the fourth to bring the Tropics to within 5-4 before Ricardo Carvalho got the equalizer with exactly seven minutes to play. However, that is as close as Florida could get.

The Tropics will be on the road next Sunday in Utica.