BROOKLYN, NY – The club’s first team (2-3-4, 10 points) earned their second victory of the 2019 campaign against the Lehigh Valley United (4-4-1, 13 points) on Saturday evening at Poly Prep Country Day School. The first team concluded a four-game home-stand, by securing their lone victory, losing a pair, and drawing one during the respective span. The Lehigh Valley United have put the Mid-Atlantic Division on notice, as they have tripled their points total from the 2018 PDL campaign coming into tonight’s contest. Regardless of the result, the Allentown, PA based club still remains in second place within the division.
Returning from injury included Bryant and Stratton goalkeeper Babacarr Ceesay, who last played at Lehigh Valley on June 1. Coming into the contest in search of their first victory since the opening contest in Leesburg against the Evergreen Hammers, the first team got things started rather quickly against the United of Lehigh Valley. Newly signed forward Valentyn Kharko made an impact early within the first 10’ minutes of the match, as he sent a pass across to midfielder Conor McGlynn for a shot that went past the diving Joseph Valeriano for the 1-0 icebreaker. Following the icebreaker from the first team, Lehigh Valley’s Jason Rocha knotted the contest at one a piece with a goal roofed over the head of Ceesay.
The second half of the contest featured three goals from the first team that earned them their 10th point of the 2019 campaign. On a pass from Alexis Santa to Kyle Parish, Lehigh Valley defender AJ Bishop took down the LIU Post product to land a penalty kick for the first team. Midfielder Conor McGlynn took the kick and came away successful for his second goal of the contest, in as many shots, to even the score at two in the 50’ minute of play. Eight minutes following the penalty kick, Lehigh Valley responded with a 58’ minute one timer from Collin Muller to put the opposition ahead by one.
The first team, during the 2019 USL League Two campaign have been known to rise following a fall. The club’s first team did exactly that in come-from-behind fashion last night, as a corner from Alexis Santa lands on the head of Mikail Radchenko and crosses it to Kyle Parish for the Australian’s first goal of his USL League Two career off a header to knot the contest a three in the 65’ minute of play. Just two minutes following the Parish header over Valeriano, veteran Robi Sillah finds a wide -open Alexis Santa on the left wing and sends one past the diving keeper in Joseph Valeriano for the go-ahead and game-winning goal at the 67’ minute mark.
The victory over the Lehigh Valley United on Saturday evening improved the head-to-head record to 5-0-1. The first team improved their record to 2-3-4 with 10 points on the season, for the first time since the 2015 season. They also secured double-digit points before the turn on the calendar to July, for the first time since 2015 as well. Numerous yellow-card cautions were issued during the contest as Sory Konate, Mikail Radchenko, and Conor McGlynn were all assessed one.
The first team trailed in shots 14-12 throughout the contest, but led the second 45’ minutes by a total of 7-6 over their opponent. Fouls galore occurred and were called on point by center official Brian DiPaolo throughout, as each received 15 including the cautions. Goalkeeper Babacarr Ceesay worked four saves into his stat-line, while allowing three goals on seven shots faced.
The club’s first team kicks off a three-game road trip on Long Island as they travel to Uniondale to face the Long Island Rough Riders on Wednesday, June 19 for an 8:00 p.m. start at Hofstra University’s soccer stadium.