Indy Eleven Downed 3-1 by Carolina RailHawks in 2015 Finale
CARY, NC (Friday, October 30, 2015) - The Carolina RailHawks enjoyed a new beginning off the field and successful ending on it on Friday, defeating Indy Eleven 3-1 this evening in both teams' NASL Fall Season finale at WakeMed Soccer Park.
New Carolina owner Stephen Malik, whose acquisition of the RailHawks was announced earlier in the day, was on hand to watch his team jump out to an early lead through goals by veteran attackers Nacho Novo and Tiyi Shipalane. Indy Eleven midfielder Marvin Ceballos would pull the visitors to within one in the 24th minute, but the "Boys in Blue" fought for over an hour to find an equalizer in vain as RailHawks midfielder Alex Perez scored an insurance goal with four minutes remaining in regulation.
The RailHawks would start pressuring the Eleven area early, beginning in the 7th minute when a Leo Osaki effort got through traffic and forced Indy 'keeper Keith Cardona into a low reaction save. It would take just two more minutes for Carolina to break through, when Shipalane's darting cross from the right endline found a waiting Novo inside the six, the former Mexican international redirecting easily to put the home side up 1-0.
Carolina continued to step up the pressure and doubled the lead in the 16th minute, this time with Shipalane doing the deed. The South African striker, who earlier in the day inked a contract extension for 2016, raced up field to catch defender Futty Danso's ball over the top before poking around Indy defender Marco Franco and slipping a shot past Cardona and inside the right post.
Down a pair, Indy Eleven finally found its offensive footing midway through the half, and it was Ceballos that would put the visitors on the board. Defender Jaime Frias pushed up and fired a shot from 20 yards that took a deflection in traffic and forced a fine save from Hunter Gilstrap that ricocheted off the crossbar. The rebound would bounce inside the six, where Ceballos rushed in to tap into an open net to cut the deficit to 2-1.
A minute later Ceballos was at it again, beating three RailHawks on the dribble to push into the left side of the area, only to drag his near post shot into the outside netting. The best chance of the half from either team there on out fell to Indy in the 40th minute when midfielder Dylan Mares was sprung behind the backline, but Gilstrap went low to save the initial 1-v-1 attempt before Mares popped up the rebounded effort.
The first 40 minutes of the second half belonged to the Indy Eleven attack, which compiled a slew of crosses and shots from distance that kept Gilstrap plenty busy. Gilstrap nearly helped Indy find its equalizer in the 72nd minute when he strolled 20 yards outside his area and just beat onrushing Eleven forward Brian Brown to a ball out of the back. Ten minutes later Brown and substitute Duke Lacroix had another quality chance on a 2-v-2 break, but it ended with the rookie Lacroix scuffing a shot to Gilstrap.
Carolina would extend its lead back to a pair in the 86th minute, the scoring play set up when Austin Da Luz drew a foul 10 yards outside the Eleven penalty area. Mark Anderson swung in the ensuing free kick into the path of Perez, who nodded home from 10 yards to push the Carolina lead to 3-1.
One bright spot down the stretch for Indy Eleven was the return to the field of Kleberson, the Brazilian midfielder getting his only minutes of the 2015 season after suffering what was thought to be a season-ending Achilles injury during the Spring Season. His seven-minute cameo included one of his patented long-range efforts, a 25-yard blast that looked destined for the goal before taking a deflection and missing just wide.
With four more games of league action to go in the NASL's final weekend, Indy Eleven ends its second season of play temporarily in 8th place in the Combined Season standings (8W-9D-13L, 33 pts.) and in 9th place on the Fall Season table (5W-5D-10L, 20 pts.).
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North American Soccer League Stories from October 30, 2015
- RailHawks Finish Season with a Bang, Beat Indy Eleven 3-1 in Season Finale - North Carolina FC
- Indy Eleven Downed 3-1 by Carolina RailHawks in 2015 Finale - Indy Eleven
- Match Notes: San Antonio Scorpions at Minnesota United: October 31, 2015 - San Antonio Scorpions
- Regular Season Comes to Thrilling Conclusion with Seeds up for Grabs - NASL
- Ottawa Looks to Clinch Top Seed in Postseason with Result in Regular Season Finale against Atlanta - Ottawa Fury FC
- Local Technology Entrepreneur Steve Malik Purchases Carolina RailHawks - NASL
- Tiyi Shipalane Re-Signs with the RailHawks - North Carolina FC
- Local Technology Entrepenour Purchases Carolina RailHawks - North Carolina FC
- Preview: Silverbacks to Close Regular Season vs. Ottawa - Atlanta Silverbacks
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