PITTSBURGH (July 6, 2022) — Albert Dikwa scored the game’s only goal in the 79th minute, and Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC claimed its second consecutive win, 1-0, over Indy Eleven tonight at Highmark Stadium.
The goal was the sixth of the season for Dikwa, a career-best for the striker from Cameroon, and it improves the Hounds (9-6-3) to 6-1-1 at home this season. Jahmali Waite recorded his second straight shutout for the Hounds, controlling the back line well in slick conditions despite needed to make just one save on the night.
It is the ninth time in 10 meetings between the Hounds and Indy (6-8-3) that the game has been settled by one goal or fewer, and it propels the Hounds into a tie with Detroit for fourth place in the Eastern Conference.
Heavy rain subsided just before kickoff, but the conditions on the turf didn’t lend themselves to precise passing; the Hounds completed just 72 percent of their passes, and Indy linked up on just 67 percent.
Indy had the ball in the net in the 11th minute, the visitors were called offside on the finishing touch after a flicked header at the front post.
But after that early Indy chance, more of the ball was on the Hounds’ attacking end. The Hounds closed the half with four shots in the final 10 minutes, though none were on target, and they had 59.3 percent of possession in the first 45 minutes.
The second half was “more of the same” by coach Bob Lilley’s assessment in the postgame press conference, and he introduced Dikwa, Kenardo Forbes and Nate Dossantos off the bench in the 59th minute to try and spark the attack.
Though the impact wasn’t immediate, Dikwa’s willingness to press the last defenders paid off with the winning goal.
A clearance by Indy only made it as far as Shane Wiedt about 30 yards from goal, and he controlled the ball and played it to Dani Rovira. Rovira popped a pass over the defense — it would be his second assist in as many games — and Dikwa got a scoring boot to the ball just before charging goalkeeper Tim Trilk could corral it.
The Hounds saw out the final minutes well, though Indy did threaten late on a well-hit volley by Justin Ingram that skipped just wide in stoppage time.
Hounds Man of the Match
Albert Dikwa came off the bench and got the deciding touch on the ball, but he also managed to lead the team with three total shots and share the lead with four touches in the opponent’s box, all in just 30 minutes of work.
The Hounds get to remain home, but they only have 72 hours to prepare for Miami FC (6-6-6), which comes to Pittsburgh for a 7 p.m. Saturday game sitting in the final playoff spot in the East. The two teams met May 28 in Miami, where they played a lightning-delayed 2-2 draw.
Riverhounds SC lineup (5-2-1-2) — Jahmali Waite; Luke Biasi (Nate Dossantos 60’), Mekeil Williams, Arturo Ordóñez, Shane Wiedt, Alex Dixon (Jesse Williams 82’); Dani Rovira (Jelani Peters 85’), Marc Ybarra (Kenardo Forbes 59’); Danny Griffin; Russell Cicerone, Dane Kelly (Albert Dikwa 60’)
Indy Eleven lineup (4-4-2) — Tim Trilk; Neveal Hackshaw, A.J. Cochran, Jared Timmer, Alex McQueen; Jonas Fjeldberg, Sam Brown (Solomon Asante 46’), Justin Ingram, Nicky Law (Ayoze García 68’); Raul Aguilera Jr. (Aris Briggs 84’), Stéfano Pinho
PIT — Albert Dikwa 79’ (Dani Rovira)
IND — Sam Brown 42’ (caution – unsporting behavior)
IND — A.J. Cochran 81’ (caution – unsporting behavior)
PIT — Jahmali Waite 90+4’ (caution – delaying restart of play)