Pittsburgh-On a hot and steamy Saturday night, the Pittsburgh Riverhounds and Orlando City Lions finish even at one. The Riverhounds Matt Kassel headed home the game’s first goal in the 82nd minute. The Lions battled back to even the score in added time when Kevin Molino slid a low right-footed shot past the outstretched hands of Riverhounds goalkeeper Hunter Gilstrap.
The game began with physical challenges and direct style of play from both sides. The tempo on the field was extremely fast as both Clubs were eager to open the scoring. The teams slowed the tempo of the game at the half-hour mark, as the heat began to take its toll in the scoreless first half.
Following the break, the Lions nearly capitalized on a counter attack in the 49th minute, but Gilstrap was on form and up for the challenge. A long service over the Riverhounds back line landed at the feet of Max Griffin. Taking a touch to prepare his body, Griffin fired a shot to the right of Gilstrap. Parrying the ball over the end-line with his right hand, Gilstrap denied Griffin and the Lions of the game’s first goal.
The Riverhounds would receive their best opportunity of the game in the 58th minute when Mike Seth was brought down in the Lions penalty area. Rich Costanzo stepped up to the penalty spot and struck a low right-footed shot to the right of Miguel Gallardo. Springing quickly to his right, Gallardo made a save but gave Costanzo a second opportunity to find the back of the net. Costanzo’s second chance whistled just over the bar and out for a goal kick.
The Riverhounds found the back of the net off of Seth’s long throw-in in the 82nd minute. Rising above the crowd, Darren Amoo flicked the ball towards the back post for a streaking Kassel. Fighting off his marker, Kassel headed the ball back across the goal and just inside the upright to put the Hounds up one.
Kassel nearly tallied his second goal of the game five minutes later on a set piece from 30 yards out. Seeing Gallardo cheating to the near post, Kassel fired a low right-footed shot towards the back post. Scurrying across his line with speed, Gallardo dove to his right to push the ball wide of goal and out for a corner.
The Lions would capitalize in added time from the foot of Molino. Moving the ball around the Riverhounds penalty area with composure, the Lions freed Molino with a nice combination from Ian Fuller and Matt Luzunaris. Wasting little time on the ball, Molino’s right-footed shot snuck inside the back post to bring the game level at one.
The Riverhounds travel to Dayton for a midweek game against the Dutch Lions on the Fourth of July. The game is slated for a 7:30 PM kickoff at Miami Valley South Stadium. The Lions remain on the road as they travel to the west coast for a two-game series against the Los Angeles Blues next weekend. Both games will be played at Cal State Fullerton’s Titan Stadium. Friday night’s game is scheduled to kickoff at 10:30 PM and Sunday’s game at 8:00 PM Eastern Standard Time.
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