USL Roundup: Late goals shape Week 1

FC Cincinnati nearly marked its first USL game with a result but fell, 1-0, to a stoppage-time goal in Charleston.

A loanee from the Montreal Impact, Romario Williams, got the goal as Charleston maintained its unbeaten home streak that dates back to May 2014. He scored off the bench from a ball served by O’Brian Woodbine to spoil the head coaching debut of former U.S. international John Harkes.

“You can see that he’s very strong around the box and he can take guys on, so it’s going to be our job to keep him up there around the goal,” Battery head coach Mike Anhaeuser said of Williams, signed on loan to help fill the gap left by the departure of Dane Kelly, who lead Charleston last year with 11 goals. “You saw what he did; what a great touch and what a great finish.”

LANCASTER HITS BLAST FOR LOUISVILLE. Another great strike carried Louisville City FC to a 1-0 victory over Charlotte.

In the fourth minute of stoppage time, Cameron Lancaster, a 76th-minute substitution, fired a free kick into the top corner from about 25 yards out. He shared hero status with LCFC keeper Scott Goodwin, whose stop of a Jorge Herrera penalty kick shortly before Lancester’s entry into the match kept the game goalless. Goodwin lunged to his left and turned the shot aside after Caleb Calvert had been fouled in the penalty area.

PICK OF THE BUNCH? Carlos Martinez of Tulsa probably takes top prize for this missile just 12 seconds into the second half of a 2-0 triumph against Rio Grande Valley, one of six new teams entering the league this season.

MONARCHS PREVAIL AFTER HOLNESS SCARE. Maikon Orellana scored just seconds into stoppage time to earn Real Monarchs a 1-0 victory over Saint Louis FC at Rio Tinto Stadium.

RSL veteran Devon Sandoval collected a throw-in and nodded it to Orellana, who smashed his shot between keeper Mark Pais and the goalpost. Monarchs outshot SLC, 9-4, and with the victory ran their unbeaten streak to six games, dating back to the 2015 season.

The game was delayed in the 34th minute when Monarchs’ midfielder Omar Holness left the game after sufferering a seizure. Alec Sundly replaced him. Holness went to the hospital for tests and was later released. He will undergo further tests supervised by Dr. Mike Cosgrave and the RSL medical staff.

LASSITER DEALS DOS FOR LOS DOS. The son of former U.S. international Roy Lassiter is keeping the family name on the scoring charts.

Ariel Lassiter scored both goals Saturday as 2015 runner-up Galaxy II beat Arizona United SC, 2-0, at StubHub Center. Lassiter put away a penalty kick he’d won in the 10th minute and on the half hour ran down a Rafael Garcia ball over the top to notch his second.

Galaxy II held onto the lead despite playing a man down after Oscar Sorto was sent off in the 62nd minute. In last year’s USL championship game, Galaxy II lost in extra time after conceding an equalizer to Rochester in the final minutes of regulation.

Roy Lassiter set the MLS single-season scoring record of 27 goals during the league's inaugural season (1996) that has yet to be exceeded. The mark has been tied twice in the past four years by Chris Wondolowski (2012) and Bradley Wright-Phillips (2014).

STEEL STARTS STRONG. One of the nation’s most famous teams of the last century was Bethlehem Steel, disbanded in 1930 after more than two decades of operation during which it won nine league titles and a record-tying five Challenge Cups (forerunner of the U.S. Open Cup).

The club name has been revived as the USL arm of the Philadelphia Union, and it debuted Friday by beating FC Montreal, 1-0, on a goal by Fabian Herbers in the 43rd minute at the Olympic Stadium. It plays its first home game in 86 years Sunday against FC Cincinnati at Goodman Stadium on the campus of Lehigh University in -- where else -- Bethlehem, Pa.

 

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