Despite taking an early lead, the Charleston Battery dropped points Saturday against the Richmond Kickers by a score of 3-1.
The Battery were without the suspended Romario Williams due to yellow card accumulation, but it was his replacement, Heviel Cordoves that put the Black and Yellow in front before a pair of goals from Sunny Jane and Oliver had the home side in front at half time. The Battery then came out in the second half and attacked, with a late push to boot, but Yudai Imura gave the Kickers insurance in stoppage time to condemn the Battery to a loss.
Skylar Thomas was at right back, replacing Quinton Griffith, while Obi Woodbine returned from suspension on the opposite side. Jarad van Schaik would slot in on the left in midfield, whilst Tah Brian Anunga would partner Justin Portillo in the middle. Maikel Chang would round out the midfield on the right, and Attaula Guerra would partner the aforementioned Cordoves up front.
The scoring was opened in as early in the second minute, when Cordoves controlled the ball from a knockdown inside the box, turned, and squeezed the ball into the corner to give the visitors the early lead.
However, Richmond would settle quickly, and got themselves back in the game not long after.
Sunny Jane would put the Kickers on terms again just after 17′, when he volleyed from the edge of the box after the defenders at the edge of the box couldn’t make a challenge to level.
On 23′ came a dangerous pull back on the right from Skylar Thomas to the top of the box that was saved well by the ‘keeper, but the ensuing corner was cleared away and the referee blew up for a foul.
Four minutes later, it was Justin Portillo at the edge of the D who would feed a through ball to Jarad van Schaik, who would sting the ‘keeper’s hands with a save.
On 35’ there was action at the other end as Fernando found his way to the byline, but couldn’t find anyone in the box and it was cleared away.
But just a minute later, the Kickers would be right back down the Battery’s throat. This time, it was the goalscorer, Jane combining with his strike partner, Oliver, who controlled at the top of the box and scored.
So, from up early, the Battery found themselves down. They would have to keep their heads up if they were to get anything from the game, and not let their current woes get the best of them.
And shortly after, the Battery looked promising as a ball was put behind for a corner kick, but it was caught by the ‘keeper, who looked to start a counter before it was cut out near the top of the box.
A Battery corner with two minutes left to go until half time was played in before a free kick was given for a foul on a defender.
And that’s how the half ended. There were noticeable shakes of the head from the Battery players coming off, and while understandable, they would hope that that wouldn’t be the nerves setting in.
And they came out of the blocks in the second half on the attack.
A 49th minute effort from Heviel Cordoves went wide of the far post as the Battery looked to turn the screw, while some good buildup shortly after fell to Obi Woodbine, who seemed to mishit a volleyed attempt on the right side of the box into the side netting.
And than, on 53, came perhaps the visitors’ best chance to equalize. Cordoves would receive an inch perfect through ball that left him 1-on-1 with the goalkeeper, and he tried to guide the ball into the bottom corner only for the ball to hit the post.
Richmond had a free kick on 65′ eventually cleared out for a throw in, which led to nothing as the Battery’s quest for an equalizer wore on.
And Attaula Guerra had another chance on 71′ as he latched onto a great through ball from Maikel Chang, but the ‘keeper was there to deny his attempt low as he got down to it. The ensuing corner led to nothing as time began to run out.
A couple minutes later, the Black and Yellow had a free kick that led to nothing as they looked to have run out of ideas after the couple of flowing moves were thwarted.
The Battery were reduced to a lot of huffing and puffing late on, but no real chances came until the home side would put themselves out of sight late on.
Yudai Imura’s 92nd minute free kick from 25 yards beat Odisnel Cooper at his near post despite the ‘keeper getting a hand to it, having seen it late.
And that was how the game ended. The Battery couldn’t take advantage of the teams above them losing, and couldn’t turn an early lead into points.
Next up for the Black and Yellow are Louisville City away from home on September 2nd at 5PM.