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 Sporting Kansas City II

Beto Avila Tallies Second Brace of 2024 in Come-From-Behind 2-1 Win over Colorado Rapids 2

May 12, 2024 - MLS NEXT Pro (MLS NEXT Pro)
Sporting Kansas City II News Release

Sporting Kansas City II (5-3-1, 16 points) got back into the win column with a 2-1 victory over Colorado Rapids 2 (1-6-1, 4 points) at Rock Chalk Park on Sunday afternoon. Forward Beto Avila notched his second brace of the campaign and second against Colorado, lifting Sporting over Rapids 2 with a pair of late goals. Midfielder Kamron Habibullah assisted on both goals as the electrifying duo continued their Colorado killing run of 2024.

Head coach Benny Feilhaber slotted first team goalkeeper Ryan Schewe back in the net for his seventh start of 2024. His backline consisted of Jacob Bartlett, Chris Rindov, Demarre Montoute and Nati Clarke. Jake Swallen made his third start of the season with Sebastian Cruz and Ethan Bryant joining him in the midfield. Rookie winger Maouloune Goumballe started in the front three with Avila and Habibullah.

With the win, SKC II concludes a three-match home stand in which they posted a 2-1-0 record. They now have five results in their last five contests and boast the best offense in the league, having 20 goals scored.

Despite a goalless first half, Sporting KC II was all over the net in the first 45, nearly beating former SKC II goalkeeper Ethan Bandre on several occasions. The first near goal came in the 11th minute when Montoute put a ball on target off a cluster of a corner kick. His redirect was cleared off the line.

Just moments later Swallen cracked a free kick just wide of the mark. Six minutes following those thrilling sequences, another near moment of brilliance came off the foot of Habibullah. The Canadian international curled his shot from the left side of the 18 off the post and away from danger.

His day was not over as he almost curled one in right on the cusp of the half-hour mark. This go-for goal drifted just far of the post and out of play. The 33rd produced the first of eight yellow cards when Lalas Abubakar was booked for a handball just outside the area. The SKC II setpiece ended up a nonthreatening one.

Eventual two-time goal scorer Avila came close in the 37th with a near post flick on a Kansas City corner which bounced wide of Bandre's goal. Halftime came with the score deadlocked at zero. Neither side made any changes at the break and the second half kicked off.

In the 51st Facundo Nunez was booked for a foul on Swallen near the midfield line. Noah Strellnauer lit up the scoreboard for the visitors a minute after the Nunez yellow. The midfielder sent a left-footed, one-touch shot across Schewe's body and tucked it into the far post to give Colorado the lead. Alec Diaz then received a booking in the 54th and five minutes later, Feilhaber went to his bench for the first time.

Defender Jonathan Robinson and midfielder Cielo Tschantret came on for Clarke and Swallen as the first swaps of the day. Nate Jones earned himself a yellow after a poor challenge on Habibullah in the 62nd before the aforementioned Habibullah got himself a yellow after making contact with Bandre.

The 72nd produced the match leveler for Sporting KC II off the foot of Avila. Bartlett sparked the attack with a brilliant run into the attacking fold before centering the ball to Habibullah at the top of the arc. Avila cleverly ran off the ball before receiving a slick through ball from Habibullah and ripped it off the hands of Bandre and into the back of the net.

SKC II's leading scorer in 2023, Pau Vidal made his first appearance since early April, coming on with Roberto Hategan in place of Cruz and Goumballe in the 73rd. A minute after that Tschantret was shown yellow for a hard challenge.

Colorado got on the attack when the goalscoring Strellnauer tested Schewe. The Georgetown alum was up to task, making a nice diving save to keep the match level. This would prove to be a crucial moment as Avila struck again in the 83rd to throw SKC II out in front.

The pairing of Avila and Habibullah did so well the first time they decided to do it again a little over 10 minutes later. Vidal settled a long ball extremely well to start the attack and then played the run of Habibullah. Rather than taking a contested shot, the unselfish attacker slid a pass to Avila who caught Bandre off his line with a shot sent to his right and into the goal.

Avila received a curtain call in the 86th when 17-year-old Academy amateur defender Alex Cunningham made his 2024 debut in his place. Vidal thought he added an insurance goal in stoppage time however it was disallowed. The fourth official signaled five minutes of additional time and SKC II packed it in.

Montoute made a superb defensive play on Strellnauer which set the Rapids 2 man off, sparking a scuffle right before the end of the match. Both players were given a yellow for the event but the final whistle came moments later.

Next up, Sporting KC II will travel to Austin, Texas for a meeting with Austin FC II in a rematch of the 2024 MLS NEXT Pro Western Conference Quarterfinals. The match will begin at 8 p.m. CT and can be watched on MLS Season Pass presented by Apple TV.

Sporting KC II 2-1 Colorado Rapids 2

Score 1 2 F

Sporting Kansas City II (5-3-1, 16 points) 0 2 2

North Texas SC (1-6-1, 4 points) 0 1 1

Sporting Kansas City II: Ryan Schewe; Jacob Bartlett, Chris Rindov, Demarre Montoute, Nati Clarke (Jonathan Robinson 59'); Jake Swallen (Cielo Tschantret 59'), Sebastian Cruz (Roberto Hategan 73'), Ethan Bryant; Maouloune Goumballe (Pau Vidal 73'), Beto Avila (Alex Cunningham 86'), Kamron Habibullah

Subs Not Used: Jack Kortkamp, Medgy Alexandre

Colorado Rapids 2: Ethan Bandre; Logan Batiste (Ricardo Pena 88'), Lalas Abubakar (Daniel Garcia 63'), Nate Jones, Steve Flores (Joshua Belluz 88'); Noah Strellnauer, Daouda Amadou, Wayne Fredrick; Antony Garcia, Alec Diaz (Rogelio Garcia 80'), Facundo Techera

Subs Not Used: Kendall Starks, Robinson Aguirre, Miguel Alvarado

Scoring Summary:

COL - Noah Strellnauer 1 (Facundo Techera 1) 52'

SKC - Beto Avila 4 (Kamron Habibullah 2) 72'

SKC - Beto Avila 5 (Kamron Habibullah 3) 83'

Misconduct Summary:

COL - Lalas Abubakar (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 34'

COL - Facundo Techera( yellow card; unsporting conduct) 51'

COL - Alec Diaz (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 55'

COL - Nate Jones (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 63'

SKC - Kamron Habibullah (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 66'

SKC - Cielo Tschantret (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 74'

SKC - Demarre Montoute (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 90+6'

COL - Noah Strellnauer (yellow card; unsporting conduct) 90+6'

Match Statistics


Shots 18 7

Shots on Goal 4 6

Saves 5 2

Fouls 9 13

Offsides 1 2

Corner Kicks 8 2

Referee: Atahan Yaya

Assistant Referee: Michael Mysiewicz

Assistant Referee: Laura Chambers Waliski

Fourth Official: Velimir Stefanovic

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