DAVID SMITH - Monday, July 25, 2011
Mason Trafford's goal helped Mariehamn earn a point against visiting KuPS, however Etchu Tabe was powerless to prevent RoPS from falling deeper into the drop zone.
IFK Mariehamn 2 - 2 Kuopio PS
Mason Trafford temporarily put Mariehamn ahead with his first goal of the season, but a late equalizer by KuPS midfielder Raphael Udah left them forced to settle for a draw.
Josh Wicks also played the full 90 minutes in Mariehamn's goal, while defender Giuseppe Funicello did not make it off the team's bench.
After brutally beating Mariehamn on their last visit to the Wiklöf Holding Arena in the Finnish Cup semifinal, KuPS looked ready to give another rough outing to their hosts when Miikka Ilo outran two defenders up the left side and put his low shot out of Wicks' reach to the far post for 1-0.
Mariehamn, who had controlled the game up to that point, pulled even nine minutes later as Aleksei Kangaskolkka worked into the right side of the box and hit a deflected shot for 1-1.
The teams kept the game fairly even well into the second half, until Trafford put the Islanders ahead with 14 minutes left as he headed in a blazing free kick from the right.
KuPS would have the last laugh, however, stealing away their share of the points in injury time, with Raphael Udah beating Wicks on a corner for the final 2-2 score.
The Islanders remain in fifth place, and face perhaps their toughest test of the season on Saturday when they head to the capitol to pay a visit to runaway league leaders HJK Helsinki.
MyPa Anjalankoski 2 - 0 RoPS
Etchu Tabe played the full 90 minutes in the defense for RoPS on Monday afternoon, picking up an early yellow card as they extended their run without any wins to 11 games.
Weak set piece defending ultimately opened the door for MyPa to take the lead in the 16th minute. Niko Kukka lofted a long free kick from the right flank into the box, and with the RoPS defense unable to clear it from near the far corner, Riley O'Neill quickly stabbed it over the line for 1-0.
Another defensive letdown in the 56th minute paved the way to the insurance goal, as Janne Turpeenniemi sloppily handled the ball in his own area forcing the referee to point to the spot, and Kukka put the resulting penalty away to the lower right side, guaranteeing the 2-0 win.
RoPS are now five points below the surface, still on last place and looking increasingly headed towards relegation. They have a one-week break before hitting the field on Monday with a trip to second-place Inter Turku.
JIPPO Joensuu 2 - 0 PS Kemi Kings
Daniel Stevens played the full game for Kemi on Saturday, but the team couldn't ever get the attack running as they were easily beaten by JIPPO Joensuu.
JIPPO forward Ariel Thierry Ngueukam gave his team the lead two minutes before the half-hour, receiving the ball directly in front of goal and placing his shot to the right corner leaving the keeper no chance.
Their insurance goal came in the 69th minute as the ball was played forward to Petteri Rönkkö, who took no hesitation before firing the ball over the lin for 2-0 and the win.
The seventh straight game without a win drops Kemi into the relegation zone. They next host Kellan Wilson and HIFK in two weeks on Saturday, August 6.
The Ykönnen's pair of American keepers - Jeremy Vuolo and Kellan Wilson - both had the weekend off as neither AC Oulu nor HIFK had any league games scheduled.