LouCity Blows by Indy, Assumes First Place
Louisville City FC celebrates a goal against Indy Eleven
(Louisville City FC, Credit: EM Dash Photography)
In a late season show of strength, Louisville City FC put rival Indy Eleven away early Saturday night in a 3-1 victory at Lucas Oil Stadium, propelling the boys in purple to the top of the USL Championship's Group E table with five games to play.
LouCity (6-2-2, 20 points) surpassed Indy Eleven (6-3-1, 19 points) in what remains an especially tight race just to make the playoffs. Given a win of its own over the weekend, Saint Louis FC has amassed 18 points to sit third; the top two advance to the postseason.
"We knew this was a battle for first place and we had to come here and win in order to put ourselves in that position," said coach John Hackworth. "It's not over yet. We have five tough games remaining. We have to come back up here in 10 days, but we took a big step forward tonight.
"I think we did make a statement around the league. You don't come to Indy and beat Indy on their home field, so again well done by us but we have more work to do."
Goals by Devon "Speedy" Williams, Napo Matsoso and Corben Bone - the third apiece for each midfielder in 2020 - made the difference for LouCity in an outburst of a first half. The visitors tallied 10 shots, with eight of them inside the 18-yard box.
Indy Eleven offered a response in the form of a penalty kick at the first half's final whistle courtesy of a LouCity hand ball. But after Tyler Pasher's goal from the spot, the hosts were unable to break through during the run of play.
"We knew that we had to put the game away quickly because Indy's a very good team," Matsoso said. "They can catch you in transition, so we knew if we got a couple goals in, the game would be a little easier that way."
The boys in purple extended their unbeaten streak to six games, with three of those against Indy, including a 1-1 draw on Aug. 8 and a 1-0 win Aug. 26. The last of the Louisville-Indianapolis Proximity Association Football contest series concludes Wednesday, Sept. 16, also at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Gritty, second-chance goals were the way for LouCity on Saturday beginning in the 24th minute when a corner kick was deflected high in the box. Defender Sean Totsch attempted to rip a shot on the volley, but as it veered wide, the ball found Williams' foot for a one-touch score.
Three minutes later, a cross from bone passed by forward Cameron Lancaster in the box to find an open Matsoso. He chipped, but Indy Eleven keeper Evan Newton caught a piece, sending the shot bouncing off the bar. On the other side, Bone headed in his club's second goal.
In the 44th minute, the scoring surge finished when Matsoso found himself in behind the defense. His first shot was blocked, but the University of Kentucky product gathered himself in the box to find the back of the net on a second try.
"It shows the commitment to get forward and the belief," Bone said. "On mine, I'm just trying to put myself in good spots and Napo takes a great shot and they made a great save. Luckily I'm there."
An otherwise dominant half ended on a down note when defender Alexis Souahy was whistled for a hand ball. More than five minutes into stoppage time, Pasher drilled his penalty, and LouCity opened the second half appearing on its back foot.
The boys in purple regained control midway through the half, with Indy's attempt to claw back evidenced by holding 59% of the game's possession. LouCity still nearly put an exclamation point on a statement-making performance as Antoine Hoppenot's rebound try in the 72nd minute soared high of the bar.
Only one club - the New York Red Bulls II in May 2018 - have managed to defeat Indy Eleven by three goals since a move to Lucas Oil Stadium that year. The Eleven didn't lose at all at home during the 2019 regular season in what's been a fortress for them.
Game Summary: Indy Eleven vs. Louisville City FC
Date: Sept. 5, 2020
Venue: Lucas Oil Stadium
Kickoff: 7 p.m.
Weather: 83 degrees, sunny
Man of the Match: Napo Matsoso
Indy Eleven: (1, 0, 1)
Louisville City: (3 ,0, 3)
Indy Eleven: 45+6'-Tyler Pasher converts a penalty with a left-footed shot to the bottom right corner.
Louisville City FC: 23'-Devon Williams right-footed shot from the center of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Sean Totsch following a corner. 27'-Corben Bone header from the center of the box to the high center of the goal. 44'-Napo Matsoso left-footed shot from the center of the box to the bottom right corner.
Indy Eleven: 1-Evan Newton, 15-Neveal Hackshaw, 29-Patrick Barrett, 20-Karl Ouimette, 9-Carl Haworth (87' 2-Conner Antley), 6-Drew Conner (76' 14-Ilija Ilic), 22-Cameron Lindley, 4-Tyler Gibson, 18-Jeremy Rafanello (62' 17-Nick Moon), 8-Matt Watson (62' 30-Andrew Carleton), 23-Tyler Pasher
Subs not used: 0-Jordan Farr, 5-Mitchell Osmond, 7-Ayoze
Head Coach: Rennie Martin
Louisville City FC: 39-Ben Lundt, 15-Pat McMahon, 4-Sean Totsch, 3-Alexis Souahy, 19-Oscar Jimenez (92' 6-Wes Charpie), 36-Paolo DelPiccolo, 80-Devon Williams, 13-Corben Bone, 27-Napo Matsoso(92' 8-Akil Watts), 29- Antoine Hoppenot (76' 10-Brian Ownby), 17-Cameron Lancaster (57' 9-Luke Spencer)
Subs not used: 1-Chris Hubbard, 42- Jonathan Gomez, 14-Abdou Mbacke Thiam
Head Coach: John Hackworth
Indy Eleven: 29'-Karl Ouimette yellow card
Louisville City FC: 45+5'-Alexis Souahy yellow card, 77'-Sean Totsch yellow card
Stats Summary: Indy Eleven/Louisville City FC
Shots on Goal: 5/7
Corner Kicks: 5/2
Images from this story
Louisville City FC celebrates a goal against Indy Eleven
(EM Dash Photography)
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