PITTSBURGH (October 7, 2017) – Two first-half goals proved to be two too many, as the Pittsburgh Riverhounds (8-12-11) fell 2-0 to the Rochester Rhinos (12-7-11) at Highmark Stadium.
Action got off to a less than stellar start for the home side with Rhinos forward Jochen Graf scoring less than 30 seconds into the match. Wal Fall then added another tally in the 14th minute to extend the deficit to the eventual final, two-nil.
Pittsburgh’s closest chance to break Rochester’s 13th clean sheet of the season came in the 69th minute off the foot of forward Corey Hertzog. Working his way down the left side of the pitch was defender Taylor Washington, who bullied his way into the edge of the box. Shaking off a defender, Washington worked a nifty cross to the foot of Hertzog, who attempted to beat Rhinos goalkeeper Dan Lynd dead-on, but unfortunately his bid for goal sailed too high.
For the match, the Hounds were out-possessed by Rochester at a 55-to-44 percent clip and failed to record a shot on goal for the second straight match.
Additionally, with the defeat, Pittsburgh saw its winless streak extend to six games (0-3-3) and losing streak move to three.
The Hounds now look ahead to their season finale at home next Saturday, Oct. 14 against Ottawa Fury FC. The club will be hosting its Fan Appreciation Night and kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tickets are still available and can be purchased at Riverhounds.com.
Riverhounds – Matt Perrella – Taylor Washington, Gale Agbossoumonde, Jamal Jack, Mike Green – Kevin Kerr, Victor Souto, Stephen Okai, Ben Fitzpatrick (Romeo Parkes 45’) – Chevaughn Walsh (Kay Banjo 66’), Corey Hertzog
Subs not used: Brenden Alfery, Ryan Adeleye, Danny Earls, Shannon Gomez, Jack Thompson
Rochester Rhinos – Daniel Lynd – Joe Farrell, Ryan Felix, Todd Pratzner, Jordan Dover, Bradley Kamdem Fewo (Ray Lee 28’) – Ryan James, Kenardo Forbes, Christiano Francois (Julian Büscher 66’) – Wal Fall (Sofiane Tergou 74’), Jochen Graf
Subs not used: Tomas Gomez, Sergio Campbell, Stefan Defregger, Darius Madison
Cleveland Brothers "Blue Collar Players of the Game"
Head coach Dave Brandt
On the first goal allowed…
“We pressed the first ball and effectively, so they kicked it. They’re a very good crossing team. We just didn’t handle the long kick.”
On the team chemistry…
“I think training has been good. There has been a good spirit in the group. It’s a group gets along together and all that. But I do think there’s something hanging in the air without a doubt. And I think we saw that today.”
On offensive struggles…
“We actually in the end had several decent looks tonight that went close and didn’t go on goal. On goal only counts if they go in as well, so that’s our concern.”
Forward Corey Hertzog
On Rochester’s defense…
“When you play Rochester, you know it’s going to be hard to score. It’s going to be hard to get some offense going. They’re so organized in the back.”
On Rochester’s physicality…
“They’re a strong physical team, but they’re smart. They’re organized. They know what they’re doing. When the ball’s in the attacking third, every single one of their defenders is talking, getting everybody back.”
On next week’s season finale…
“We have one more game left. We can end this season on a ‘W.’ That’s all we need to look at there. It doesn’t matter about three points. It doesn’t matter about anything. We need to win this game.”