Battery Fall Short against Louisville in Mueller's 200th Appearance
The Charleston Battery came up short against defending USL Championship winners, Louisville City FC, on a night where captain Taylor Mueller celebrated his 200th appearance for the club.
For the second consecutive week, the Battery opened the match as the more aggressive side, creating early opportunities to open the scoring. In the 2nd minute of play, Jarad van Schaik pounced on a loose ball after Louisville City midfielder Sunny Jane lost his footing on the slick surface. Van Schaik moved the ball up the left side of the pitch, finding Dante Marini who sent in a great ball towards Arthur Bosua. Bosua found space between two Louisville defenders but his header was just off the mark.
Ataulla Guerra capitalized on his first-half attempt scoring his first goal at MUSC Health Stadium this season. After a bit of defensive work, Jay Bolt launched a long ball into Louisville's defensive half looking for the Trinidad international. Jane misread the direction and speed of Bolt's clearing pass and Guerra sidestepped the midfielder putting himself through on goal. Guerra made no mistake on his one on one with Chris Hubbard putting the Battery up 1-0.
Unfortunately, Guerra was forced off after picking up a slight injury in the 17th minute and Zeiko Lewis came on to replace the forward after missing Wednesday's match with Loudoun United. Things started to unravel for the Battery in the 29th minute after Antoine Hoppenot was tackled in the box by Leland Archer. Magnus Rasmussen, who scored a penalty in the teams match at Slugger Field on June 1st, converted from the spot to bring things level for the visitors. Van Schaik had a late first-half chance, a free-kick from about twenty yards out, but his shot was just high and wide.
Louisville elected to make early second-half substitutions bringing on George Davis IV and Luke Spencer. The duo would link up for City's second goal, the eventual match-winner. Napo Matsoso forced a turnover out of Lewis and the ball found it's way to Spencer's feet. Spencer slipped a pass between the Battery defense and found Davis who beat Kuzminsky high at the near post on an off-balanced shot. Davis' 88th-minute goal left the Battery with minutes to find an equalizer, and the Black and Yellow were unable to do so.
Taylor Mueller made his 200th appearance for the club Saturday night after joining the team before the start of the 2012 season. In his eighth season with the club, Mueller reflected on his career with the Battery during his postgame interview. "It's pretty wild," Mueller said. "You don't really think about it until it's in front of your face. Dusty is out here saying that I'm going to catch him pretty soon, and that's scary because he was my first ever club coach back in Seattle."
The Battery are back on the road next Saturday for their August 24th match against Nashville SC. Charleston defeated Nashville earlier this season while also eliminating them from the U.S. Open Cup.
CHARLESTON: Kuzminsky, Bolt, Mueller, Archer, van Schaik, Marini (Daley 68'), Anunga (YC 41), Kelly (Svantesson 89'), Rittmeyer, Guerra (goal 7', Lewis 17'), Bosua
LOUISVILLE: Hubbard, Totsch (YC 13'), Craig, Rasmussen (pen 30', YC 81'), McCabe, Jane (Davis IV 58', goal 88'), Thiam (Spencer 58'), McMahon (YC 74'), Jimenez, Hoppenot (Matsoso 84'), Williams (YC 67')
Substitutes: Dobrowolski, Francis, Watts, Souahy, Matsoso, Davis IV, Spencer
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