AMSTERDAM – What should have been a sweet Friday night quickly turned sour as Molde FK winger Josh Gatt was forced off just four minutes into his comeback appearance, while compatriot Ethan Horvath posted his first career Tippeligaen shutout and victory in a 3-0 road defeat of Rhett Bernstein's Mjondalen.
The 23-year-old speed merchant entered the game as a 73rd-minute substitute, but left soon after with what what appeared to be an upper left leg injury. Making his first league showing since June 2013 because of dual surgeries on his left knee, Gatt still found enough time to earn the champs a pair of corner kicks.
Sadly overshadowed to some extent, Horvath, a 19-year-old Colorado native, rang up two saves and a more impressive pair of rushes off his line. Both nine minutes before and on the stroke of halftime, the Molde backstop charged forward with just the right timing and positioning to shut down breakaway threats from home attackers.
Setting aside the extreme highs and lows of the evening, the defending champs used the points gained to tentatively jump into third place.