Rochez leads Honduras past Canada at CU20

Bryan Rochez (#9) celebrates after scoring in Honduras' 3-2 win over Canada in the CONCACAF Under-20 Championship on January 22, 2015, in Montego Bay, Jamaica. (Photo: Mexsport)

MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica -- Captain Bryan Rochez scored his second goal late in the match to cap a comeback and lift Honduras to a 3-2 Group B victory over Canada in the CONCACAF Under-20 Championship (CU20) on Thursday at the Montego Bay Sports Complex.

The win boosted the Catrachos (3-1-1, 10 points), who will contest a playoff for a berth in the FIFA U-20 World Cup on Saturday, into second place over El Salvador (2-2-1, 8 points), which beat Cuba 2-0 earlier in the day.  Canada (1-0-4, 3 points) already had been eliminated.

Rochez connected for the 83rd minute winner with his team-high fourth goal, drilling a left-sided shot from 18-yards out past helpless goalkeeper Marco Carducci.

Honduras had lost its previous two CU20 matches to Canada by the same 1-0 scoreline.  Its last win came more than two decades ago, a 2-1 triumph at home in San Pedro Sula on August 26, 1994.

Twice the Canadians had taken the lead and twice the Hondurans equalized.

Much to the delight of the contingent of its traveling supporters in attendance, Canada went ahead in the 18th minute thanks to Marco Bustos’ first goal of the tournament.  The Vancouver Whitecaps midfielder netted from the left side through tight quarters past goalkeeper Roberto Lopez.

Five minutes later, though, Rochez knotted the score.  Junior Lacayo lofted a cross from the left side into the area that deflected off Canadian defender Jackson Farmer into the crossbar.  The rebound fell for the opportunistic Rochez to slot home from three yards for a 1-1 tie. 

The Maple Leafs again took the lead with in the 39th minute.  A long pass from the back on the left side found Jordan Hamilton in the penalty area and he slid a shot home in traffic for a 2-1 advantage.  It was Hamilton's third goal of the competition, equaling his haul at the CONCACAF Under-17 Championship two years ago.

The resolute Hondurans refused to wilt as Dabrison Castillo headed from 12 yards to level at 2-2 in the 68th minute, setting the stage for Rochez's late heroics.