Mueller, Marini Propel Battery Past Loudoun in Wild Finish
The Charleston Battery took three points in a 1-2 win against Loudoun United at Segra Field on Wednesday night.
It was a strong start for the Battery as they controlled much of the possession and attacking play. Less than a minute into the match, Ataulla Guerra stepped in front of a poor Loudoun pass and looked the way of Romario Piggott who made a late run towards the top of the box. Piggott was met by the Loudoun defense and his attempt was blocked away. Guerra had his fair share of chances in the first half getting onto the end of a Piggott cross four minutes in. Kotaro Higashi played a brilliant ball down the right side finding Piggott making a streaking run. Piggott's ball in found Guerra in stride but the forward couldn't control and his attempt was off the mark.
Charleston's first-half efforts wouldn't go without reward. Captain Taylor Mueller scored his first goal of the season in the 21st minute after a succession of quick Battery corners. Piggott delivered a well-placed cross at the near post and Mueller flicked a header past Chris Seitz. Mueller and the Battery backline finished out a strong forty-five minutes, allowing just one shot on target. Former Battery forward, Gordan Wild, was the most dangerous player for Loudoun in the first half and his 37th-minute free-kick was saved by Phil Breno; his first in the USL Championship.
Loudoun kicked off the second half controlling the majority of possession but came up empty on their attempts. Dante Marini and Higashi combined for the Battery's second of the night in what proved to be an important goal. Higashi brought the ball into the attacking third and found Marini up in support down the left side. Marini made a lengthy run into the box, finishing with a low shot, beating Seitz at the back post.
Loudoun would pull one back in the 78th minute courtesy of substitute Orlando Sinclair. Griffin Yow bought a bit of space in the Charleston box and chipped a pass across the face of goal. Phil Breno made a play on the ball but spilled it right to the forehead of Sinclair who had an easy tap in. Breno, who made his first USL Championship start of the season, made three saves in the win. It was a wild finish as Loudoun looked to net the equalizing goal in the final seconds of stoppage time. The Battery blocked two shots from inside the box before Breno fell on the final shot.
The Battery are back home this Saturday as they take on Louisville City FC. Louisville defeated Charleston by a score of 4-1 at Louisville Slugger Field earlier this season. Tickets are available for purchase here or by calling (843) 971-GOAL.
LOUDOUN: Sietz, Dambrot, Presley, Pines (Cerritos 58'), Verfurth, Murphy (Alvarez 46'), Garay, Yow, Bustamante, Wild, Murphy (Sinclair 65', goal 78')
Substitutes: Brown, Lubahn, Saravia, Alvarez, Cerritos, Sinclair, Sorto
CHARLESTON: Breno, Nelson (Woodbine 72', YC 90+1), Paterson, Mueller (goal 21'), van Schaik (YC 29'), Kelly, Piggott (Rittmeyer 82'), Anunga, Guerra (Daley 63'), Marini (goal 61'), Higashi
Substitutes: Kuzminsky, Bolt, Woodbine, Rittmeyer, Svantesson, Bosua, Daley
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