Hounds Tie Atlanta, 1-1
GWINNETT, Ga. - Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC (15-4-14) tied Atlanta United 2 (6-17-10) on Wednesday at Coolray Field.
The Hounds struck first with a Thomas Vancaeyezeele goal in the 27th minute, but later lost the lead once Laurent Kissiedou kicked in a goal during the 52nd minute. With the draw, Pittsburgh is locked into the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference with one regular season game left to go until playoffs.
How It Happened
As rain pelted Coolray Field, the Hounds created thunder around the Atlanta goalmouth.
With the score locked at 1-1 with less than eight minutes remaining, Pittsburgh blitzed Atlanta goalkeeper Alec Kann. Joe Holland had a shot blocked, another saved and a third knocked away from close range. Other Hounds jumped in the action as well, but too faced the fate of Holland.
The Black and Gold posted nine shots from the 82nd minute onward, but could not cash in the game-winning goal before the final whistle blew the game dead at a 1-1 result.
Atlanta scored its equalizer in the second half off the right foot of Laurent Kissiedou, who missed his first opportunity but converted on his second chance.
Receiving a cross from Jon Gallagher, Kissiedou struck a shot with his left foot to see his chance saved by Pittsburgh goalkeeper Dan Lynd. Although less than 30 seconds later, the attacker gathered another ball sent into the 18-yard box and blasted home an equalizer in the 52nd minute to knot the score at 1-1.
In addition, Kissiedou almost assisted an Atlanta goal in the 77th minute. After he played a ball into the penalty area to an open Jackson Conway while on the break, Conway's shot was saved by a charging Lynd, preserving the 1-1 score.
In the midst of a drenched playing surface and sheets of rain, the Black and Gold struck first in the 27th minute.
After the Hounds won a foul from about 25 yards out, Christiano François lined up to take the free kick opportunity. Booting the ball toward the goalmouth, François found the head of Thomas Vancaeyezeele, who broke free at the edge of the six-yard box. The defender's header found the bottom left-hand corner of the net to provide Pittsburgh with the 1-0 advantage.
With two minutes left in the first half, Pittsburgh defender Hugh Roberts was shown a yellow card for a foul just outside of the Hounds' 18-yard box. Perhaps Atlanta's best opportunity of the half, midfielder Jack Metcalf shot the ensuing free kick over the crossbar, and Pittsburgh entered halftime with the 1-0 lead.
Man of the Match
Thomas Vancaeyezeele notched his second goal of the season and increased his minutes total to 2,819, setting a club record. Kevin Kerr previously held the single-season record with 2,813 minutes logged during the 2017 campaign.
Stat of the Game
Pittsburgh recorded a season-high 26 total shots during the match.
Beyond the Box Score
Thomas Vancaeyezeele ties Kevin Kerr's 2017 mark of 31 starts for the most single-season games started in club history.
Christiano François (seven) and Kenardo Forbes (seven) totaled more chances created than the entire Atlanta United 2 squad (five).
Including blocked takes, 12 of 13 Pittsburgh field players recorded a shot.
Held without a shot, Mouhamed Dabo obtained possession much of the night for the Black and Gold and led the team with five interceptions. What's Next
Riverhounds SC will close out the regular season with a trip to New York Red Bulls II (12-8-13) at 5 p.m. on Sunday at MSU Soccer Park. The Hounds will try to sweep New York, as they won the first meeting, 3-0, on June 16 at Highmark Stadium.
Riverhounds SC - Dan Lynd - Ray Lee (Romeo Parkes 79'), Todd Pratzner, Hugh Roberts, Andrew Lubahn - Mouhamed Dabo, Thomas Vancaeyezeele - Ben Fitzpatrick (Joe Holland 66'), Kenardo Forbes, Christiano François - Kay Banjo (Neco Brett 78')
Subs not used: Mike Kirk, Tobi Adewole, Jordan Dover, Joe Greenspan
Atlanta United 2 - Alec Kann - Jack Metcalf, A.J. Cochran, Shawn Nicklaw, Jon Gallagher (Dylan Gaither 90'+2) - Chris Goslin, Alessandro Castro (Lagos Kunga 64'), Oliver Shannon - Laurent Kissiedou (Kevin Barajas 81'), Devon Sandoval, Jackson Conway
Subs not used: Nicolas Caraux, Paul Christensen, Luke Mitchell
PGH - Thomas Vancaeyezeele 27' (Christiano François)
ATL - Laurent Kissiedou 52'
PGH - Hugh Roberts 43' (caution)
PGH - Andrew Lubahn 73' (caution)
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