FC Cincinnati squeaked out a point in their playoff push with a 2-2 draw with Saint Louis FC
Matchday #29: FC Cincinnati 2 vs Saint Louis FC 2
Toyota Stadium – Attendance: 4,376
FC Cincinnati came into Saturday’s game looking to elevate its position on the table and improve its chances at another home match. On the other side of the ball was a team that was just 3 points out of a playoff spot and desperate to give itself and its fans some hope.
The boys in Orange & Blue continue to struggle to get out of the gate with a purpose. Saint Louis controlled the pace of play in the first half and looked like a team playing to win. FC Cincinnati looked happy to absorb the STLFC pressure and let the game come to them.
In the 42nd minute, the match took a turn for the worse, Saint Louis’ Seth Rudolph received a pass 40 yards from goal with acres of space in front him. Rudolph beat De Wit and then went at Hoyte as he found space just inside the penalty area. The midfielder made it past the Englishman and placed a shot into the near post upper ninety that Mitch Hildebrandt could not get a hand on
The opportunities in the opening half were few for Cincinnati. One of the better opportunities came in the 45th minute when Matt Bahner received a pass from Andrew Weideman. Bahner settled the ball and placed a low shot that was parried away by Gorrick, preventing the equalizer and allowing Saint Louis to take a 1-0 lead into the half.
The second half started much like the first half and Saint Louis doubled its lead less than 15 minutes into the second half. Seth Rudolph created another opportunity by driving a shot that Cincinnati’s Harrison Delbridge tried to block. However, the Aussie’s arm was extended and the ball clearly deflected off his hand. The ref quickly pointed to the penalty spot and Christian Volesky buried the shot. Less than an hour into the match the boys were down by two.
They say a two-goal lead is the most dangerous score in soccer and it was proven true again tonight. After Saint Louis’ second goal, there seemed to be more intent by Cincinnati and ten minutes later it paid off.
Kenney Walker played a free kick into the box that eventually found Austin Berry’s head, but was saved off the crossbar and led to a corner. Cincinnati took a quick corner that was headed to the top of the eighteen where Corben Bone was waiting and he laced a shot into the upper netting cutting the lead in half. The new father now has his second goal in two weeks.
Cincinnati kept pressing the game trying to find that equalizer and appeared to have found it in the 81st minute when Walker sent another ball into the box where Djiby got his head onto it. He headed it to a wide open Konig, who placed the ball into the net. The play was called off because of the refs questionable foul that was called on Djiby.
The game appeared destined for a 2-1 defeat, but there was no quit in the boys. In the 93rd minute, Josu sent a long ball from the defensive side of the field that found the head again Djiby who flicked towards McLaughlin. The ball took a high bounce off the turf that Jimmy got his head to, but the Saint Louis’ goalkeeper tried to bat the ball away but missed and hit Jimmy square in the face. The ref quickly awarded a penalty that Danni König drove down the center of the goal tieing the game. The game ended in a 2-2 draw.
The draw keeps the Orange & Blue in 6th place, just one point ahead of Orlando, who defeated Charleston earlier in the night.
Away Game Blues- The team needs to find better form away from the friendly confines of Nippert. The last few playoff spots are tightening up quickly, especially with Orlando victory and Bethlehem games in hand. Victories on the road are difficult, and in our current position, we can not afford to draw with teams below us in the table, even if we are the away team.
5- The number of games without a loss. Even though the team is not winning games it is not losing games either. The last match that the team lost was New York Red Bulls II (Aug 19), which was the week we all wish we could erase; Losses to LCFC [5-0], NYRB[3-2](USOC), and NYRBII[4-0]
Resilience– Slow starts are hurting the team and we need to find a way to get into games quicker. However, the team did something that it has not done ever. The team was able to come back from a two-goal deficit and gain a point, on the road nonetheless.
FC Cincinnati Starting XI: Hildebrandt (GK), Delbridge, de Wit, Berry (79′); Hoyte, Bone, K. Walker, Bahner; McLaughlin, Greig (53′), Wiedeman (68′)
Subs: Jaye (GK), Dacres, Konig (53′), Djiby(68′), Josu(79′), Schindler, Polak
Saint Louis FC XI: Gorrick(GK); Howe(45′), Cochran, Walls, Charpie; Stojkov, Mirkovic, Bjurman, David; Rudolph(76′), Volesky(88′)
Subs: Grinwis(GK), Jackson, Plewa(45′), Alvarez(88′), Appiah(76′), Feeley, Alihodzic
42’ Rudolph (StL)
59’ Volesky (StL) – PK
70’ Bone (CIN)
90’+5 Konig (CIN) – PK
41′ Greig (CIN)
87′ Stojkov (StL)
Friday 9/29 – at Charlotte Independence – 7:00 p.m. EST – Charlotte, NC