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Match report: Union II 1-2 Pittsburgh Riverhounds

Photo: Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC

The Union II finished up their season on Saturday night with another late minute heartbreaker as the Pittsburgh Riverhounds defeated them by a 2-1 score. The Union II had already played the Riverhounds  twice this season losing 6-0 and 4-0, so there was much motivation for a better result. Compounded with the fact that The Union II were out of the playoffs and that three days earlier against Hartford had lost on an extremely odd play, the team could be excused for lacking enthusiasm.  But that did not happen as they put in a solid and hard fought game against a very good Pittsburgh team.

The match started as they often do with both teams feeling each other out – but that didn’t last for long.  In the 7th minute Riverhound’s forward Ropapa Mensah muscled his way into the box and took a quick, low shot that was confidently scooped up by Union II goalkeeper Ben Martino. Just a few minutes later, Mensah again ran ahead of everyone and took a sharply angled shot on goal with a similar result.

In the 15th minute Pittsburgh would score the first goal of the game.  Off a Riverhounds corner kick, Defender Patrick Bunk-Anderson put his head on the ball forcing Martino to make a reaching save.  The Union II never fully cleared the ball and allowed Pittsburgh to reset.  Midfielder Robbie Mertz took a through ball in the box, backheeled it to fellow midfielder Raymond Lee who shot low through the arms of a falling Martino. 

The Union II got a chance soon after as Brandon Craig Sorenson put a ball up high and over the top.  The ball was popped back towards the box by Anthony Sorenson where Paxton Aaronson hit the volley that was slightly tipped and went just wide of the goal.

As the first half wound down, the Union II were being out-muscled as the Riverhounds dominated play.  Good marking on the Pittsburgh attackers was what prevented further damage on the scoreboard.  

The Union II came out of halftime ready to turn things around.  On the front foot they soon got their first shot on goal by Jack McGlynn, a drive from 22 yards out that was easily saved by goalkeeper Danny Vitiello.

Union II struck back in the 61st minute.  Nathan Harriel dropped a perfect ball from midfield onto the feet of Anges Bohui making a long run down the center of the field. Bohui was pulled down in the box and the referee pointed to the spot. Jack McGlynn was tasked with taking the penalty and proceeded to confidently put the ball into the right corner of the net tying up the game.

Pittsburgh worked hard to retake the lead and they finally did in the added time.  Off a corner kick, forward Albert Dikwa rose high and nodded the ball just inside the far post.  

With little time left on the clock,  the Union II were unable to equalize and suffered their second last minute loss in as many games.

Three Points:

  • Fight – With nothing to play for other than pride, the Union II came out and played hard and with energy against a very good Pittsburgh team (who was playing or first place in their group)
  • Tragedy – Two really tough losses against two really good teams.  The team came out these last games and played hard and played well.  It is unfortunate the results don’t match the effort.
  • Mystery – What exactly is a Riverhound?

Line ups:

Philadelphia Union II

Ben Martino, Nathan Harriel, Dante Huckaby, Brandan Craig, Anthony Sorenson, Jack de Vries (Zach Zandi 56’), Cole Turner, Jack McGlynn, Paxten Aaronson (Danny Flores 79’), Patrick Bohui ( Quinn Sullivan 88’), Caden Stafford (Axel Picazo 88’)

Substitutes not used: Issa Rayyan, Benjamin Ofeimu, Mitchell Budler

Pittsburgh Riverhounds: 

Daniel Vitiello, Skylar Thomas, Thomas Vancaeyezeele, Patrick Bunk-Andersen, Ryan James, Daniel Griffin, Kenardo Forbes, Raymond Lee (Anthony Velarde 69’), Robbie Mertz, Steevan dos Santos, Ropapa Mensah (Albert Dikwa Lega 69’)

Substitutes not used: Tony Walls, Tomas Gomez, Mark Forrest, Mark Lindström, Daniel Rovira

Scoring Summary;

PIT – Raymond Lee (Mertz) 15’

PHI – Jack McGlynn (Penalty) 63’

PIT – Albert Dikwa (Forbes) 90+2’

Misconduct Summary:

PIT – Raymond Lee (caution) 37’

PHI – Cole Turner (caution) 43’

PIT – Skylar Thomas (caution) 61’

PIT – Steevan dos Santos (caution) 70’

PHI – Jack McGlynn (caution) 90+1’

One Comment

  1. Old Soccer Coach says:

    Pittsburgh will play Louisville City in Louisville in the first round of the playoffs. Should be a pretty good match. Kenardo Forbes is back for Pittsburgh, so both teams will be quite strong.

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