Bethlehem, PA. (August 7, 2016) – Bethlehem Steel FC took on Charlotte Independence to rebound from a 3-2 loss to Toronto FC II last Sunday. The game kicked off at 4 p.m. on a humid Sunday evening at Goodman Stadium.
Steel FC came out attacking out the gate, spending most of the first five minutes in Charlotte’s half. Charlotte proceeded to get into Steel FC’s box in the seventh minute, but both of their attempts were blocked away by spectacular defensive efforts from Auston Trusty and Ryan Richter.
The first real chance for Steel FC came in the 22nd minute when captain Ryan Richter and Leo Fernandes played a one-two in the midfield and Richter took off on the right flank. He squared it to the middle where a sliding Seku Conneh hit the ball underneath John Berner; 1-0 to Steel FC.
Charlotte had a superb chance right after the water break in the 35th minute when Auston Trusty took down a Charlotte player right outside the box. They took the free kick at the edge of the 18 but the shot was way over the Steel FC held on to the lead.
Enzo Martinez came out with a purpose in the second half as he ran up to Auston Trusty and stole the ball away to go one-on-one with John McCarthy, who with his best effort couldn’t stop the ball from going into the back of the net. The score was now all tied up.
Charlotte were given another dangerous free kick right outside the box in the 55th minute but the curling effort was saved spectacularly by McCarthy and the score remained tied.
Charlotte’s Jun Marques Davidson scored in the 62nd minute to take the lead in the game. He blasted the ball on a half volley to put it past McCarthy in goal.
Steel FC started to come back to life when John McCarthy slap a ball down to himself and launched it up field for Eric Ayuk to chase down. His speed led the ball down the right flank and he crossed it straight to Cory Burke’s head. The ball went just over the bar. Burke found himself on the ball again just minutes later, he beat the keeper Bernen one-on-one but the ball went too far away from him and he couldn’t recover before Bernen was back in position.
Cory Burke was taken down in the 18-yard box to win the Steel FC a shot from the penalty spot. Richter stepped up confidently and finished off the goal in order to tie the game up again at 2-2. The game ended 2-2.
Steel FC will now hit the road for four straight games. After the first match against Pittsburgh Riverhounds, they will travel to FC Montreal, Louisville City FC, and Harrisburg City Islanders.
Steel FC will return to Goodman Stadium on Sunday, September 4 to face New York Red Bulls II at 3 p.m. Single game and group tickets are available by visiting bethlehemsteelfc.com or by calling 844-STEELFC.
Bethlehem Steel FC 2, Charlotte Independence 2
Shots: 20-9 (Charlotte)
Shots On Goal: 11-2 (Charlotte)
Corners: 9-5 (Bethlehem)
Saves: 9-0 (Bethlehem)
Fouls: 13-11 (Charlotte)
BST – 22’ Seku Conneh
CLT – 46’ Enzo Martinez
CLT – 62’ Jon Marques Davidson
BST – 88’ Ryan Richter (PK)
BST – 25’ – James Chambers (Yellow Card)
CLT – 32’ – Jack Metcalf (Yellow Card)
BST – 35’ – Auston Trusty (Yellow Card)
CLT – 44’ – Patrick Slogic (Yellow Card)
CLT – 87’ – John Bernen (Yellow Card)
BETHLEHEM STEEL FC STARTING XI
John McCarthy; Ryan Richter ©, Josh Yaro, Auston Trusty, Taylor Washington; Boluwatife Akinyode (Josh Heard 69’), James Chambers, Derrick Jones (Anthony Fontana 82’); Eric Ayuk, Leo Fernandes, Seku Conneh (Cory Burke 66’)
Substitutes not used: Samir Badr, Nick Bibbs, Gabe Gissie, Amoy Brown
CHARLOTTE INDEPENDENCE STARTING XI
John Bernen; Bilal Duckett ©, Patrick Slogic, Joel Johnson, Henry Kalunge; Jun Marques Davidson, Lewis Hilton (Paul Clowes 78), Enzo Martinez (Aly Hassan 90’), David Estrada (Zach Pfeffer 82’); Caleb Calvert (Jorge Herrera 82’), Brian Brown (Alex Martinez 78’)
Substitutes not used: Cory Mizell, Jack Metcalf
Jose Carlos Rivero, Mark Treilman (Assistant), Kevin Lock (Assistant), Dustin Killick (Fourth)
· Goalkeeper John McCarthy set a single game record for most saves (9).
· Ryan Richter recorded his fifth goal of the season (most on the team) He also recorded his third assist of the season
· Bethlehem Steel FC now have a record of 6-8-8 in their inaugural 2016 season and a 4-4-4 record at home. This game concludes a six game homestand for Steel FC
ABOUT BETHLEHEM STEEL FC
Bethlehem Steel FC joined the United Soccer League officially on Oct. 27, 2015. Based in Bethlehem, Pa. in the Lehigh Valley, it is the official USL affiliate of the Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer. Also owned and operated by Keystone Sports and Entertainment, LLC, the team started their inaugural season on March 25, 2016 at FC Montreal and played the home opener at Lehigh University’s Goodman Stadium on April 3, 2016. For more information about Bethlehem Steel FC, visit www.bethlehemsteelfc.com.