Pennsylvania Stoners 3, Nashville Diamonds 1 (05.23.82)

Nashville 1-3 Pennsylvania

May 23, 1982 — Hale Stadium (Nashville, Tenn.)

Scoring Summary
PENN — Ronald Ost (Sandje Ivanchukov) 2′
PENN — George Tiger (Roman Urbanczuk) 34′
NASH — Michael Harderson (Goran Meskovic) 48′
PENN — Solomon Hilton (Charles Kadupski) 57′

Diamonds Stoned By Pennsylvania

(Nashville Tennessean, 05.24.82)

By John Lewis Pitts

NASHVILLE — When is a good break not a good break?

When you fail to take advantage of it, that’s when.

And that was the downfall of the Nashville Diamonds yesterday, in a 3-1 American Soccer League loss to the visiting Pennsylvania Stoners.

Pennsylvania was forced to play 10-on-11 for much of the second half, after Sandje Ivanchukov was ejected just seconds after the start of the period. But the Stoners were still able to send the expansion Diamonds to their third consecutive defeat.

Afterwards, Nashville coach Hector Guevara vowed to make “some major changes” in his injury-plagued team’s lineup this week. Nashville fell to 1-3 with the loss, while Pennsylvania improved its mark to 2-0.

Yesterday’s late afternoon match at Tennessee State University was witnessed by a crowd of 1,340 — according to “turnstile” figures supplied by the Diamonds’ management after the game. There were less than 400 people in the main seating area at Hale Stadium when the game began, however.

Yesterday’s poor turnout under perfect skies left Diamonds officials puzzled. Team business manager Nelson Burns confirmed yesterday that a paid turnout of 2,500 or more is needed for the team to generate the funds it needs to operate.

But there was no puzzle behind the Diamonds defeat — at least, that was the analysis of Stoners coach Kalmon Csapo.

“The more physical the game got, the more frustrated the Diamonds got,” Csapo noted. Both of his team’s wins have come at the Diamonds’ expense.

“The first time we played, they showed a lot of patience,” Csapo said, recalling his team’s earlier 3-2 win over the Nashville squad. “The first time, we were just lucky to win, but not this time,” Csapo added.

His Pennsylvania squad, including seven veterans from the 1980 ASL champions, hit the Diamonds quickly, scoring just 1:09 into the contest on a shot by Ronald Ost, assisted in a crowd by Ivanchukov. George Tiger got his second goal of the season against Nashville at the 33:22 mark, assisted by Roman Urbanczuk after a Pennsylvania corner kick.

Ivanchukov’s ejection, after he fouled Nashville’s Dario Ochoa, led the way to a goal by the Diamonds’ Michael Harderson. The score, on a header at 47:20, was the first goal of the season for the Atlanta native. Goran Meskovic was credited with the assist.

Despite the short-handed situation, Pennsylvania was able to net an insurance goal about nine minutes later to send the Diamonds squad reeling to their third consecutive loss. Former NASL Cosmos standout Solomon Hinton did the honors at 56:33, with a long assist by Charles Kadupski.

Nashville played without the services of team captain  Mac Garrigan and forward Juan Yepez, both of whom are nursing injuries. Guevara, in his rookie campaign as a professional coach, vowed yesterday to “get rid of some of our players who just aren’t ready for the professional game.” The Diamonds signed a pair of new players last week, and adjustments in the 18-man roster had been expected to make room for them.

Nashville hosts expansion squad Oklahoma City Sunday at TSU.