September 29, 2018 — First Tennessee Park (Nashville, Tenn.)
RBNY – Amando Moreno (Jared Stroud) 5′
NSC – Michael Reed (Liam Doyle) 26′
RBNY – Red Card – José Aguinaga (24′)
NSC – Yellow Card – Bolu Akinyode (53′)
NSC – Yellow Card – Matt LaGrassa (65′)
NSC – Yellow Card – Taylor Washington (69′)
RBNY – Yellow Card – Jared Stroud (72′)
RBNY – Yellow Card – Ethan Kutler (78′)
|Matt Pickens||Evan Louro|
|Kosuke Kimura||Ethan Kutler|
|Taylor Washington||Allen Yanes|
|Justin Davis||Hassan Ndam|
|Liam Doyle||Kevin Politz|
|Matt LaGrassa||Christopher Lema|
|Ismaila Jome (Bolu Akinyode 45′)||José Aguinaga (24′)|
|Michael Reed||Andrew Tinari|
|Alan Winn (London Woodberry 90’+1)||Tom Barlow (Lucas Stauffer 74′)|
|Tucker Hume (Kris Tyrpak 66′)||Amando Moreno (Niko De Vera 90’+2)|
|Ropapa Mensah||Jared Stroud|
Nashville SC earns important point in wild 1-1 draw
NASHVILLE — Nashville SC earned a 1-1 draw for the second consecutive home game on Saturday night against New York Red Bulls II at First Tennessee Park. An exciting first half and thrilling final seconds book-ended an overall even matchup between the two teams.
In addition to the score, each team’s stats for possession, total passes and duals won reflected the game’s indisputable balance, as they were practically equal in all three categories.
90 in a nutshell
What may appear to be an average score line was actually full of action. New York’s goal in the fifth minute was the catalyst for an eventful first half. Amando Moreno got on the end of a cross from teammate Jared Stroud, and his shot took a short and clear path to the back of the net.
Less than 10 minutes later, New York had the opportunity to take an early 2-0 lead after drawing a penalty in the 14th minute, but Nashville goalkeeper Matt Pickens stepped up to make a huge save and denied Tom Barlow’s effort.
The frenzy continued when New York’s José Aguinaga was shown a straight red for a cleats-up tackle, giving Nashville SC a man-up advantage for the remainder of the game. Nashville capitalized on the resulting free kick’s dangerous location when Michael Reed buried his shot to level the score 1-1.
Nashville kept up the pressure in the second half, and the team’s motivation combined with some creativity led to several chances for the home team. The chaos continued when what would have been an own goal became a goal-line clearance by a Red Bull defender.
Added time provided even more thrill to the already exciting match as Nashville earned back-to-back corner kicks in the final seconds. New York’s goalkeeper Evan Louro made two ridiculous saves to deny Nashville, and even though Justin Davis managed to bicycle kick one of those deflections into the goal, he was quickly called offside to end the match.
Nashville SC head coach Gary Smith
“There were some very exciting moments where the pass, choice or finish weren’t quite up to scratch. In the end, Matt [Pickens’] penalty save really is what gave us what I think will be a very valuable point. I’ve said to the guys all along, whenever you can’t win, and there were times we looked like we couldn’t, don’t lose. A defeat tonight would have been a very difficult end against a team that is also looking for a postseason berth.”
Two Nashville SC players added firsts to their stat lines tonight. Matt Pickens’ penalty save in the 14th minute was his first of the season, while Michael Reed added the first goal to his 2018 resume in the 26th minute.
Eastern Conference Update
With tonight’s draw, Nashville SC, Ottawa Fury FC and North Carolina FC are now tied with 44 points in the USL Eastern Conference standings. However, Nashville still sits below both teams in the ninth spot because of overall wins. With three games remaining in the regular season, a playoff spot is still well within reach for Nashville.
Nashville SC hits the road for its final away game on Saturday, October 6 before capping off the regular season with back-to-back home games. Saturday’s kickoff against the Richmond Kickers is at 6 p.m. CT at City Stadium.