Hounds Tie Ottawa, 2-2
PITTSBURGH - Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC (2-2-7) tied Ottawa Fury FC (6-2-4), 2-2, this past Saturday night at Highmark Stadium.
A tough result for the Riverhounds, which were leading 2-0 at the 62nd minute mark, but Fury FC eventually tied the game. Neco Brett and Kevin Kerr led the scoring with beautiful goals from inside the 18-yard box early in the match. Ottawa later scored two second-half goals to even the score.
Both clubs started the match slowly in the initial minutes, trading potential chances back and forth. Pittsburgh opened up the scoring opportunities from the foot of Kenardo Forbes, missing just wide of the net from outside the penalty box.
Ottawa answered back with a barrage of chances, coming dangerously close to taking the initial lead. Fury FC's best chance in the first half was a free kick from defender Carl Haworth, chasing Pittsburgh goalkeeper Austin Pack to the edge of the net at the 19-minute mark.
The Fury kept the attack heavy on Pack for the initial 30 minutes, but the Riverhounds were able to fight off the offensive pressure.
The Riverhounds' fortune changed from a slicing pass from Ryan James to Kerr in the 34th minute. Kerr's header into the back of the net broke open the scoring, giving the Hounds a 1-0 lead.
Pittsburgh kept the attack on Ottawa, coming close to extending the lead. A beautiful save at the goal line from Callum Irving kept the score at 1-0.
The second half started off slow, but within minutes Brett had the ball and took a shot that just barely missed the net. However, Brett scored a goal from the center of the penalty box that was assisted by Robbie Mertz in the 62nd minute.
Turning the tables, Ottawa received a penalty kick, which led to Wal Fall scoring a goal in the 66th minute.
Ottawa kept the pressure on, as Aidan Daniels scored just three minutes later on a rocket from outside of the penalty area.
The Hounds gained a penalty kick in the 90+1 minute after forward Christian Volesky was taken down inside of the penalty area. Brett took the shot, but it was blocked by the goalkeeper. This led to a corner kick where the Hounds were still unable to score.
The match with Ottawa resulted in a tie, 2-2.
Hound of the Match
Kevin Kerr's goal tonight now puts the midfielder in third place all-time in Riverhounds history with 28 goals in league play.
Stat of the Game
The Hounds have never lost a game to Ottawa. Their all-time record against Ottawa is 3-0-2.
Riverhounds SC will travel to MLS club Columbus Crew SC in the fourth Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. The match will be at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 11 at MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.
Riverhounds SC - Austin Pack - Ryan James, Tobi Adewole, Thomas Vancaeyezeele, Joe Greenspan, Dani Rovira (Noah Franke 86') - Kenardo Forbes, Robbie Mertz, Kevin Kerr (Christian Volesky 83') - Steevan Dos Santos (Anthony Velarde 86'), Neco Brett
Subs not used: Kyle Morton, Uchenna Uzo, Sammy Kahsai
Ottawa Fury FC - Callum Irving - Onua Obasi, Thomas Meilleur, Dakota Barnathan, Carl Haworth - Charlie Ward (Nana Attakora 84'), Wal Fall, Chris Manella - Maur Samb (Protais Mutambala 90'), Christiano Francois, Kevin Oliviela (Aiden Daniels 62')
Subs not used: David Monsalve, Jeremy Lapare
PIT - Kevin Kerr 34' (Ryan James)
PIT - Neco Brett 62' (Robbie Mertz)
OTT - Wal Fall 66' (penalty)
OTT - Aiden Daniels 69' (Charlie Ward)
PIT - Thomas Vancaeyezeele 41' (caution)
OTT - Onua Obasi 45' (caution)
PIT - Steevan Dos Santos 58' (caution)
OTT - Charlie Ford 61' (caution)
PIT - Neco Brett 73' (caution)
Head coach Bob Lilley
On team's play...
"I think we're playing pretty well against good teams, but we're making mistakes at critical times. We're not managing the game as well as I would have liked. I think the big part of our success last year was managing leads well."
On team's response after Ottawa ties it up...
"I liked our response after 2-2 to finish the game strong and try to get the winning goal. We get the PK call and get some other chances."
On finishing games...
"We haven't been able to get over that end line. We need to be able to do that. That's the next step."
Midfielder Kevin Kerr
On his goal...
"I think the previous two times Ryan had the ball out there. I knew the next time he was going to make that run."
On chasing wins...
"We're craving it. We're working hard for it. It feels like we've thrown a few away recently. We've made a couple silly mistakes."
Midfielder Robbie Mertz
On his assist...
"I turned and didn't have a chance much to look much what I had behind me. But I instinctively knew he was there and saw him slip off the center back's shoulders, and it was a great finish from him."
On the aggressive match...
"I think the main thing is to focus on the goal at hand, which is to win the game. Sometimes getting caught up with the referees and the other team isn't in your best interest to win the game."
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