Chattanooga FC hit the road to take on Greenville FC in South Carolina but after a hard-fought battle, the score ended in a tie, 1-1.
Greenville pursued the goal very aggressively from kickoff. In return, CFC’s defense fought back from the start.
Eighteen minutes in, CFC had their first shot on goal by Santiago Moore. Intense, physical play set the tone of the match. Twenty minutes into the game though, and both teams struggled to get any threatening shots off.
Everson Lima leaped over a Greenville player to stop a counter attack. Chattahooligans refer to him as the “anchor” for the CFC defense, and Lima was in clear control all night. Pierre Bocquet and Juan Hernandez were all over the midfield contributing significantly. Both midfielders had a fantastic game and were vital to the team’s success.
A foul in 30th minute, dangerously outside the box created a scoring opportunity for CFC. After the cross in front of the goal, it was saved by a header from Hernandez. Both teams battled it out, but with no result at halftime.
A shot on goal by Felipe Oliveira five minutes into the second half was the first attempt for CFC. Oliviera was fouled by Greenville a minute later and Greenville received the first yellow of the match. This free kick created another scoring opportunity for CFC and it was obvious the boys in blue were ready for the second half of the match.
In the 54th minute of play, Bocquet had a beautiful shot on goal which resulted in a corner kick. Bocquet was able to get a bicycle kick attempt at goal off the corner, but still no goal for either team.
Joao Costa had the first goal of the night. Running into the box right on time, he shoot the ball into the back of the net after receiving a cross in front of the goal by Moore in the 57th minute.
In the 64th minute Costa created another corner and scoring opportunity for CFC.
Shortly after, Costa received the second yellow card of the match in the 70th minute.
CFC head coach Bill Elliott made some substitutions at the 70th minute in efforts to keep the lead. Charlie Clarke came on for Moore, Jose “Zeca” Ferraz came on for Oliviera, and Cameron Woodfin took Costa’s place on the field.
Steven Rocca went down with an injury and had to leave the field in 79th minute. Michael Hornsby came on for CFC and replaced Rocca at left back.
CFC picked up the pace and intensity in the second half. Their tenacity and refusal to quit was obvious during the entire half.
A Greenville foul in the 82nd minute created a great scoring opportunity for CFC. The free kick taken by Hernandez created a corner and the corner was hard fought but the score remained 1-0.
CFC’s newest keeper, Phil D’Amico, collided with a Greenville player while saving a ball. Though on the ground for several minutes, he persisted and stayed in the game to finish the match.
In the first minute of extra time, Greenville was able to find the back of the net as they passed the ball right past CFC defense for a last-minute goal. The crowd was shocked and the match finished just a minute after with the score tied, 1-1.
“I am proud of the way the boys played, especially in the second half,” CFC head coach Bill Elliott said. “They fought hard and fair and the unfortunate result at the last minute wasn’t a true reflection of the hard work they put into this match. We are looking forward to the quick turn around and meeting Inter Nashville on Wednesday.”
“No one likes a tie,” Sean McDaniel, CFC’s general manager, added. “But, the boys had a great game and we are proud of the work they put in tonight. I think we can use this as momentum and motivation when we travel to Nashville on Wednesday.”
Contributor: Sarah Catherine Baker/Chattanooga FC