Despite a strong first half performance, a pair of second half goals proved costly as Bethlehem Steel FC fell to Orlando City B, 2-0, at Goodman Stadium on the campus of Lehigh University.
The match was a tale of two halves for Steel FC, with the club holding Orlando City B without a shot on goal in the first 45 minutes while having three one-on-one opportunities saved in the 18-yard box. However, in the final period a pair of goals from Richie Laryea, the No. 7 overall section in 2016 MLS SuperDraft, allowed the visitors to claim all three points.
“We were really good in the first half and didn’t make them pay,” Bethlehem Steel FC head coach Brendan Burke said. “We had four clear, cut chances and probably at least two of them have to be goals going forward. We knew that at halftime and tried to apply ourselves the same way and when you leave a team in a game long enough, a couple defensive mistakes can have you end up on the wrong end of it at home which is unacceptable at this point.”
In a tight match that saw Steel FC win the possession battle 52 to 48, Steel FC saw three key chances saved by Orlando City B goalkeeper Earl Edwards Jr. Cory Burke produced the first chance, slipping past the defense only to be denied by a sliding save. Moments later, Seku Conneh launched a breakaway but was stopped by a spectacular diving save. In the 37th minute, forward Fabian Herbers intercepted a pass near the 18-yard box but was denied as Edwards swept away the chance with a slide tackle.
Steel FC continued to push for the opening goal in the final half, however, a quick counter attack from Orlando City B proved costly in the 49th minute. Austin Martz began the attack on the wing, dribbling into the box before laying it off for Laryea who sent in the volley past goalkeeper John McCarthy. OCB doubled its lead in the 71st minute as Dikwa played a through ball to Laryea who fired home a right-footed shot.
Bethlehem Steel FC continues its home stand next weekend when the team hosts FC Cincinnati for this second time this month. The two teams will square on at Goodman Stadium on Saturday, April 29 with kick-off slated for 5 p.m.
Bethlehem Steel FC 0, Orlando City B 2
Shots: 12-11 (Bethlehem)
Shots On Goal: 8-5 (Orlando)
Corners: 8-5 (Bethlehem)
Saves: 6-5 (Bethlehem)
ORL – 49’ Richie Laryea (Austin Martz)
ORL – 71’ Richie Laryea (Albert Dikwa)
ORL – 38’ Richie Laryea (YC)
BST – 45’ Auston Trusty (YC)
BST – 48’ Cory Burke (YC)
BST – 68’ Aaron Jones (YC)
BST – 70’ Giliano Wijnaldum (YC)
BST – 81’ Derrick Jones (YC)
ORL – 87’Zachary Ellis-Hayden (YC)
BETHLEHEM STEEL FC STARTING XI
John McCarthy; Giliano Wijnaldum, Auston Trusty, Hugh Roberts, Aaron Jones (Yosef Samuel 80’); Derrick Jones, Adam Najem, Cory Burke; Fabian Herbers (Santi Moar 80’), Marcus Epps, Seku Conneh. Substitutes not used: Matt Freese, Charlie Reymann, Matt Mahoney, Josh Heard, Chris Wingate
ORLANDO CITY B STARTING XI
Earl Edwards Jr,; Kevin Alston (Scott Thomsen 34’), Zach Hayden, Fernando Timbo, Zach Carroll (Conor Donovan 46’); Lewis Neal, Tony Rocha (Jordan Schweitzer 76’), Pierre Da Silva, Richie Laryea; Austin Martz, Albert Dikwa.
Substitutes not used: Jake Fenlason, Danny Deakin, Michael Cox, Ben Polk
Henrik Karlsson, Victor Vazquez (Assistant), Joshua Encarnacion (Assistant), Amber O’Connor (Fourth)