A trio of Hounds found the scoresheet in Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC’s (10-3-8) 3-2 victory against the Swope Park Rangers (3-12-6) on Saturday at Highmark Stadium. Here is how Pittsburgh scored at least three goals in its third straight game.
7’ Christian Volesky assisted by Robbie Mertz
The Hounds were first to jump on the scoreboard, using a corner kick to find the back of the net.
Stationing five players inside of the six-yard box, it was Christian Volesky (green arrow) who ended up placing a header into the goal after Robbie Mertz whipped in a ball. Despite having eight defenders by the six-yard box, Swope Park could not fend off the striker, who leaped above the competition.
47’ Neco Brett assisted by Jordan Dover
Anthony Velarde started things inside of the attacking third.
With a defender closing in, Velarde (orange arrow) elects to pass wide to Jordan Dover (yellow arrow), who makes a run down the right flank. Once Dover has his run into the penalty box cut off by another defender, he sends a cross toward Neco Brett (green arrow), who is placed at the center of the penalty area.
As the only defender in the path of the pass misses on the opportunity to clear, Brett boots a shot into the bottom left-hand corner to give the Hounds the 2-1 advantage at the time.
51’ Anthony Velarde assisted by Robbie Mertz
Using his vision after alluding a defender, Mertz connects a pass to Velarde from the left to the right side of the pitch.
With open room and space to run, the rookie midfielder bolts into the penalty area. When he arrives there, he is greeted by a Swope Park defender. However, this doesn’t slow his run, as Velarde dribbles past him before firing a shot into the top left-hand corner to extend the club’s lead to 3-1 at the moment.
Tale of the Tape
The Hounds doubled the Rangers in shots (17-8) and nearly doubled the opposition in shots on target (7-4). Despite these numbers, Swope Park hung around throughout the match. The former Western Conference squad converted a penalty kick off the foot of Gedion Zelalem in the 33rd minute, which knotted the score at 1-1 heading into the half.
In the second stanza, Swope Park found the back of the net again, having Zé Pedro blast a shot in from outside of the 18-yard box during the 67th minute. The Hounds buckled down afterward, possessing the ball 58 percent of the time during the match’s final 15 minutes – a stretch that play entered the Black and Gold’s defensive third for just 9 percent of the time.