Gordon Wild and Jackson Conway scored their first goals of the campaign - with Conway’s goal standing as the first of his professional career - as ATL UTD 2 knocked off North Carolina FC 2-1 at Fifth Third Bank Stadium on Saturday night. Atlanta now have back-to-back wins and sit at 3-1-2 on the season.
Atlanta held marginally better of the play to start the match, but Brendan Moore was called upon to make some big saves to keep NCFC off the board. In the 25th minute, though, Andrew Carleton picked out Wild with a nice forward pass - and the German beat former Atlanta United keeper Alex Tambakis far post for the match’s first goal.
NCFC drew level on a cross from D.J. Taylor to Marios Lomis in the 36th minute to knot it at 1. It stayed that way until the the 67th minute, when a timely defensive play by Luiz Fernando deep in his own third set up Conway’s first professional goal.
“Like every young professional, it’s always good to get your first goal,” said Conway. “I just had to stay composed and make sure I put it away (especially with) the chances I had in the first half.”
Atlanta threatened to add a third toward the latter portion of the match to really ice it away, but in the end it only needed two as it snapped a two-game losing streak at home. It did so in support of Brendan Moore, who made several impressive stops en route to a six-save performance.
“We played in front of a really big crowd in Memphis on the road with a young team and got a lot of praise,” said coach Stephen Glass. “For the young group to bounce back from the win and take on (tonight) with an unbelievably positive performance from start to finish was nice for us to see.”
ATL UTD 2 are off until April 24 when it takes on the Tampa Bay Rowdies in Kennesaw. Match time is set for 7:30 p.m. at Fifth Third Bank Stadium.
ATL UTD 2 Starting Lineup: Brendan Moore, Wesly Decas, Guillermo Benitez, George Campbell, Jon Gallagher, Jack Metcalf (c), Will Vint, Anderson Asiedu, Andrew Carleton, Gordon Wild, Jackson Conway
Substitutes: Fernando 46’ (Wild), Kissiedou 57’ (Metcalf); Wyke 86’ (Conway)