If there is one thing that Leo Fernandes has learned in his young career, it's not to let things he can't control bother him.
Take, for example, what transpired in the Cosmos' 2-1 win over the defending North American Soccer League champion San Antonio Scorpions at Shuart Stadium Saturday night.
The North Babylon product thought he had given the Cosmos the lead in the 40th minute when he put in a rebound of Adam Moffat's shot, but he was offside. "You go from such a high and then they say no goal," Fernandes said. "Then you just have to turn around, keep working."
Which he did. After San Antonio took a 1-0 lead on Milton Palacios' eight-yard goal a minute into first-half stoppage time, Fernandes was presented a similar situation two minutes later as Raul whacked a long shot off the crossbar. Fernandes remained onside and slotted the ball past goalkeeper Daniel Fernandes to tie it.
"Finally I get rewarded with a goal," he said. "I'm happy. Right before halftime, too. I thought it was very important for us."
The Cosmos (3-1-3 in the fall season) added an own goal in the 47th minute as Hunter Freeman's free kick deflected off defender Brad Rusin to break the tie and extend their home unbeaten streak for the season to nine games (6-0-3) and overall home streak to 16 matches (9-0-7) dating to a 1-0 loss to Carolina on Aug. 2, 2014. "We didn't play well . . . but good things are able to get results," Fernandes said.
Fernandes, on loan from the Philadelphia Union (Major League Soccer), has a team-high six goals. "Tonight wasn't his best performance of the year, but he gave us a lot of things up front," said assistant coach Carlos Llamosa, who coached the team because of head coach Giovanni Savarese's one-game suspension. "He has scored a lot of goals for us and has been very important for the team."
Midfielder Marcos Senna, sidelined for more than two months because of visa issues, made his first appearance since June 5, replacing Andres Flores in the 65th minute. Said Llamosa, "It's great to have Marcos back to have a guy with that quality in the locker room and on the field."
In an unrelated development, the Cosmos are close to landing some attacking help in the form of Argentine striker Gaston Cellerino, who most recently played with the Santiago Wanderers (Chile).