RECAP PROVIDED BY PITTSBURGH RIVERHOUNDS
PITTSBURGH (Riverhounds.com) — The Pittsburgh Riverhounds (6-16-6) played FC Cincinnati (14-6-8) to a nil-nil draw in the first head-to-head meeting between the two clubs at Highmark Stadium.
Hounds goalkeeper Zack Steffen shined, stopping all three shots faced on goal out of 10 total for his second clean sheet in seven career starts.
His effort was fortified by a Pittsburgh backline of Willie Hunt, Sergio Campbell, Mike Green and Ryan Adeleye, as well as the latter’s second half replacement, Marshall Hollingsworth, that held a Cincinnati attack averaging 1.44 goals per game entering the match to only its fourth scoreless showing on the season.
The match’s first 45 and change consisted mainly of a defensive gridlock with both squads trading possession and near misses of dangerous chances on goal.
Pittsburgh opened the second half with the better showing of play in the first 20 minutes, pushing the pace in the Cincinnati defensive end.
Unable to crack the Cincinnati backline though, the Hounds had to call upon Steffen to keep the match scoreless in the 66th minute. A two-minute flurry for the opposition, Cincinnati first threatened as second half sub Jimmy McLaughlin sent a stellar cross in from the left for the back post.
Unmarked, Andrew Wiedeman put a clean header directly on goal, forcing Steffen to react immediately for the save.
After Steffen collected the ensuing corner, Cincinnati regained possession off the goal kick, pushing to break the scoreless tie. Firing a ball into the box, chaos ensued in front of the Hounds net, as the ball bounced off multiple players before landing at the feet of Casey Townsend.
The Cincinnati forward wasted no time pushing a shot on goal, but the crossbar stonewalled his bid for a goal.
The clubs would trade near chances from there, with Cincinnati coming close to a go-ahead goal in the 78th minute off a McLaughlin shot just missing the far post, while both Lebo Moloto and Nick Thompson had open looks, but could not find the frame.
Action concluded with the Hounds getting a last chance corner in second half stoppage time.
Moloto curled a strong take into the box, ticketed far post for a streaking Thompson, but goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt was quick to the ball to ensure the draw.
Despite nabbing a point at home for the third-straight match, the Hounds were officially eliminated from playoff contention with the result.
Pittsburgh now heads to Bethlehem to face Steel FC (6-13-9) in the penultimate match of the season this Sunday, August 18. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m. at Goodman Stadium.
For more information on the Hounds’ final road game of the year, visit Riverhounds.com.