Despite some exciting moments and a first-half goal by 2020 top scorer Shak Adams, FC Tucson fell 3-1 to South Georgia Tormenta FC in its 2021 season opener at Erk Russell Park in Statesboro, Georgia.
Showing the rust of a team that had yet to play in a full-scale competitive match this year, FC Tucson fell behind 2-0 when Joshua Phelps scored after a deflection in the 10th minute and Curtis Thorn right-footed home a shot in the 30th minute for a Tormenta team that was already playing its third game of the season.
But the Men in Black found a lifeline in the dying minutes of the first half to raise their spirits going into the locker room. New forward Giovanni Calixtro, who had some impressive moments in preseason scrimmages, bamboozled the Tormenta defense with the looping ball over their heads that landed directly in the path of Adams. From there, the man who tied for the team lead with four goals last year controlled the ball, scooted into the box and slotted it past Tormenta keeper Pablo Jara with his right foot.
FC Tucson came out with renewed vitality in the second half, but couldn’t manage to track down an equalizer, and Marco Micaletto ended any hopes of a comeback when he scored in the 88th minute for South Georgia.
The Men in Black will open their home season on Saturday, May 8, against Forward Madison FC. The first kick is set for 7 p.m. at Kino North Stadium.