DAVID SMITH - Sunday, February 17, 2013
Jozy Altidore added another goal to his season total in AZ's draw at Roda while Charles Kazlauskas and Helmond kept within reach of the Eerste Divisie top spot in a wild win over Emmen.
Roda JC Kerkrade 2 - 2 AZ Alkmaar
Jozy Altidore did his part to help AZ earn a point on the road, scoring the first of their two goals in a draw with Roda on Saturday afternoon.
Roda were almost instantaneously in the lead following the opening whistle, when a Mark-Jan Fledderus was blocked by the keeper directly into the path of Sanharib Malki for a heads-up one-timed finish from the edge of the six-yard box.
After recovering from the initial shock, AZ were able to pull even four minutes past the half-hour. Viktor Elm first fed Altidore with a fine pass to the top edge of the area. The American made a quick turn to face goal and launched a perfectly-place shot to the lower left corner for his 16th league goal of the season.
AZ then jumped ahead six minutes after the break, with Willy Overtoom hitting a beautiful looping 28-yard free kick over the wall and just under the crossbar.
Disappointment was just around the corner for the visitors, however, as they were forced to settle for a draw when Frank Demouge was left clear in the right side of the six-yard box to knock an uncontested shot over the line for the 2-2.
AZ remain in 11th place with the point, and will be back in action on Sunday when they host NAC Breda.
Helmond Sport 4 - 3 FC Emmen
Charles Kazlauskas went the distance for Helmond on Friday evening, setting up the team's winning fourth goal in a thrilling win over FC Emmen
Emmen took the lead in the 37th minute after Ruud ter Heide rose high to head in a cross by Said Bakkati, however Helmond defender Gillian Justiana equalized when he rushed in to put away an initially-blocked shot by Emrullah Güvenc.
Three minutes after the break, Helmond took their first lead of the game when Juanito Sequeira sent a cross through the six-yard box that Samir Fazli slammed home, however Emmen clawed even two minutes afterwards with Marvin Wijks doing the damage with a fine looping effort from the edge of the area.
Helmond looked to have sewn up the win with a pair of goals soon thereafter - the first with Quekel putting away a shot that had initially ricocheted off the upright in the 58th minute, and the second coming when a cross from Kazlauskas was deflected off the back of Davy Brouwers and over the line after 66 minutes.
Kevin Maynard did pull one back for Emmen in the 72nd minute with a flukey header over the keeper's head, however the hosts held strong for the remainder to earn the three points.
The victory does keep Helmond within two points of leaders Sparta Rotterdam, and they will have a chance to temporarily climb into first place when they host De Graafschap in a make-up game on Monday evening.