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FC Tulsa Pulls off Big Victory at Louisville City FC

September 3, 2021 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - FC Tulsa News Release


LOUISVILLE, Ky. - There are wins and then there are WINS.

FC Tulsa keeper Sean Lewis guaranteed FC Tulsa earned the latter in a 1-0 clean sheet victory on the road at first place Louisville City FC on Friday night - a win that brought FC Tulsa to within six points of the top of the table. An early goal by Darío Suárez and late heroics from keeper Sean Lewis was enough to send Tulsa to its first four-match winning streak in franchise history and first-ever road win over Louisville.

Weathering a Louisville storm of shots, 19 over the 90 minutes, FC Tulsa's backline held firm against the league's third-best offense, sending LouCity to only its third scoreless match of the 2021 season. Lewis and his defense were the stars of the night for Tulsa as the Michigan-native in net made four official saves, while Tulsa collectively turned out 33 clearances, avoiding danger just as quickly as it came.

On offense, Super Darío's nickname was suited for the moment in the 20' minute as the Cuban forward took a ball from Matt Sheldon and slotted inside the left post under the diving Louisville keeper. It was the sixth goal of the season from Suárez and the 11th time FC Tulsa had scored the first goal in the match, going 10W-1L-0D in those 11 matches.

Despite Louisville's relentless attack, that trend held firm. One trend that didn't was FC Tulsa needing multiple goals to win. It was the first win in 2021 for Tulsa while scoring just one goal as the side came into the match 0W-5L-0D when scoring just once.

Now FC Tulsa returns to ONEOK Field for a three-match homestand where it can continue to accumulate points as it pushes for a second consecutive USL Championship Playoffs berth.

GOALS

20' TUL - Darío Suárez (Matt Sheldon)

SUPER DARÍO SCORES

FC Tulsa is the only team in the USL Championship with four players with at least five goals this season - Rodrigo da Costa (8), Darío Suárez (6), Marlon (6) and Joaquín Rivas (5). Suárez added his sixth goal of the season to his tally tonight after scoring eight goals in 2020. Over the last two seasons, no FC Tulsa player has more than Suárez's 14 total goals.

CLEAN SHEET SEAN LEWIS

It has been since the third match of the season, May 8 at Indy Eleven, since Sean Lewis had earned a clean sheet, but the 29-year-old saved it for the perfect time. Needing a win to keep pace with Louisville and Birmingham at the top of the Central Division, Lewis orchestrated a four-save masterclass in the 1-0 win.

SILENCING LOUISVILLE

It had been since July 18, 2020 since Louisville City FC had been shutout at home before Tulsa accomplished the feat on Friday night. The last time it happened, the now defunct Saint Louis FC also secured a 1-0 victory.

STREAK CONTINUES

The win marks FC Tulsa's fourth consecutive, a new franchise best in a single season. Previously, FC Tulsa had won three in a row twice, the final three regular season matches of the 2020 season and the first three of 2021.

MILKE MAKES DEBUT

FC Tulsa newcomer Victor Milke made his debut during stoppage time of the match, coming on to help secure the three points.

PLAYOFF ODDS

According to FiveThiryEight, FC Tulsa's playoff odds now sit at 93% following the victory. The analytics-based site sees FC Tulsa most likely to maintain its 3rd place position with a 53% chance to finish there. With 11 matches remaining in the season, seven at home, FC Tulsa will be pushing for a top-two spot and a guaranteed home Playoffs match.

CENTRAL DIVISION STANDINGS UPDATE

Team Matches Played Record (W-L-D) Points

Louisville City FC 21 12-5-4 40

Birmingham Legion FC 21 12-6-3 39

FC Tulsa 21 11-9-1 34

OKC Energy FC 22 7-7-8 29

Indy Eleven 20 7-8-5 26

Atlanta United 2 22 6-9-7 25

Memphis 901 FC 19 5-7-7 22

Sporting KC II 23 3-13-7 16

UP NEXT

FC Tulsa will have the rest of the Labor Day weekend off before a Wednesday night tilt against Indy Eleven begins a three-match homestand at ONEOK Field. Kickoff against Indy is set for 7 p.m. on September 8.


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