Bethlehem Steel FC started their five game road trip win a 1-0 win over Charlotte Independence at Ramblewood Soccer Complex in Charlotte, N.C.
Bethlehem Steel FC scored early on in the 11th minute when Cory Burke intercepted a bad pass back to Charlotte keeper John Berner. Burke dribbled past Berner and calmly slotted the ball into the open net.
Steel FC kept pushing throughout the half and outshot the Charlotte side 5-2, with three of them on goal. Derrick Jones had a good chance on goal in the 30th minute sending the ball hard and low to the left hand corner after Ryan Richter crossed a beautiful ball from the right flank. Charlotte keeper Berner made a diving save to send the ball out of bounds for a corner.
“I thought they came out and were pretty organized defensively,” Zach Pfeffer of Charlotte said. “We knew they were probably going to try and counter attack and pretty much hit long balls up to their target guy to hold up the ball and I thought they did a pretty decent job of it the first half.”
In the second half, Charlotte came out swinging when former Philadelphia Union player Pfeffer picked up the ball at the edge of the box and curled one on target in the 47th minute. Samir Badr saved and this became a pattern for the rest of the half.
James Chambers became very involved in the second half off the game. Starting with a stunning shot from outside the box in the 55th minute. The ball was caught by Berner but only just. Chambers, also took all seven of the Steel FC corners in the game.
Steel FC had the chance to go up 2-0 in the 62nd minute when Cole Missimo picked up a loose ball in the box, but shot it just wide with his left foot.
Badr came up big once again in the 77th minute, saving what would have surely been an equalizer. Charlotte forward Caleb Calvert was put through one-on-one against Badr and with his entire body stretched, Badr made a great one handed save.
Steel FC return to Goodman Stadium on Sunday, July 10 to face Pittsburgh Riverhounds at 4 p.m. Single game and group tickets are available by visiting bethlehemsteelfc.com or by calling 844-STEELFC.
The team will now play four games on the road with the next matchup against Wilmington Hammerheads FC on Friday, June 17 at 7 p.m.
Bethlehem Steel FC 1, Charlotte Independence 0
Ramblewood Soccer Complex
Shots: 11-12 (Charlotte)
Shots On Goal: 6-3 (Steel FC)
Saves: 3-5 (Charlotte)
11’ – Cory Burke
68’ – Cory Burke
80’ – Caleb Calvert
BETHLEHEM STEEL FC STARTING XI
Samir Badr; Ryan Richter ©, Mickey Daly, Auston Trusty, Taylor Washington; Bolu Akinyode, Derrick Jones (Mckenzie 90’+4’), James Chambers, Cole Missimo (Taylor-Parker 79’); Jamie Luchini (McMaster 90’), Cory Burke (Heard 71’)
Substitutes not used: Andrew Verdi, Nick Bibbs, Lamine Conte
CHARLOTTE INDEPENDENCE STARTING XI
Berner; Kalungi, Duckett © (Hellman 75’), Johnson, Slogic (Metcalfe 80’); Ekra, Herrera, Davidson; Pfeffer (Martinez 62’), Calvert (Estrada 85’), Brown
Substitutes not used: Mizell, Clowes, Bartlett
Rubiel Vazquez, Kevin Broadley (Assistant), Gregory Brigman (Assistant), Eric Barnes (Fourth)
· Cory Bruke scored his first goal of the season after making just his second start of the season
· Samir Badr recorded his first clean sheet of the season along with his first win of the season
· Justin McMaster made his first appearance for Bethlehem Steel FC
· Bethlehem Steel FC now have a record of 4-4-4 in their inaugural 2016 season and a 2-2-2 record on the road. This was also the second road win of the season