Even with the relative position of the teams, Loudoun United has had problems with the Pittsburgh Riverhounds, losing nine of the first ten games the pair have played since the Red-and-White’s inception. And even a underachieving Hounds team is not one to be trifled with as Loudoun learned Sunday night, losing 2-1 in front of 2,020 fans at Segra.
The XI responsible for Wednesday’s win over Memphis returned, as Jeremy Garay, Jacob Greene, Ted Ku-DiPietro, Hayden Sargis, and Gaoussou Samaké came down from D.C. United. Abdellatif Aboukoura and Gavin Turner joined from the Academy, and Kristian Fletcher made his first Loudoun lineup after his Wednesday MLS debut.
The Hounds’ pressure reaped some early rewards as a Sargis turnover eventually resulted in a Russell Cicerone goal:
Ku-DiPietro and Tyler Freeman combined for a counter that almost leveled things:
Things stayed that way for a good portion of the second half, as former Loudoun player Shane Wiedt helped Edward Kizza with a Hounds brace:
Minutes after Christian Benteke missed a penalty for D.C., his brother Jonathan drew a late penalty, which he was able to convert for Loudoun to halve the lead:
Loudoun continued to press, and a 94th minute corner kick found Luis Zamudio in the Hounds area, but he headed it just wide for the game’s last touch.
“To be honest, I thought it was a pretty good match,” Coach Ryan Martin said after the game. “Two teams that were going after it, obviously in the end, their experience probably made the difference in terms of the finish. We created enough (that) when we look back, enough to more than get a point out of that game. So a little disappointed with that, but happy with the overall performance.”
“Credit to them, they’re good at what they do,” Jalen Robinson said afterwards. “That’s why Bob (Lilley, Pittsburgh coach) wins as much as he does. It was like a track meet because we’re trying to get the line up, they’re flirting with the line, their center backs are hitting long balls, but we know they can’t sustain that. That’s why I think we had a better rhythm in the second half versus the first. We had our chances, so it is disappointing, but you’ve got to respect them for being good at what they do.”
USL Championship Regular Season - Game 27
Loudoun United FC 1 (Benteke 89 (PK))
Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC 2 (Cicerone 26, Kizza 74)
Loudoun (4231): Luis Zamudio; Hayden Sargis (Kristian Fletcher 45), Jalen Robinson (C), Nicky Downs, Gaoussou Samaké (Abdellatif Aboukoura 82); Jeremy Garay (Abdoul Zanne 45), Houssou Landry; Ted Ku-DiPietro, Skage Simonsen (Jonathan Benteke 62), Jacob Greene; Tyler Freeman
Pittsburgh (352): Jahmali Waite; Shane Wiedt, Arturo Ordonez, Mekeil Williams; Hugh Dixon (Jelani Peters 62), Daniel Rovira (Edward Kizza 62), Daniel Griffin, Kenardo Forbes, Robbie Mertz (Louis Argudo 73); Albert Dikwa (Jesse Williams 86), Russell Cicerone (Angelo Kelly 73)
Loudoun - Freeman 69
Pittsburgh - Wiedt 41, Waite 55, Argudo 90, J. Williams 90+2