RECAP - Eleven 3 : 0 Puerto Rico FC

Late first half onslaught helps Boys in Blue end home slate undefeated
Published Oct 22, 2016

Indy Eleven’s 3-0 Win over Puerto Rico FC Caps Undefeated Home Regular Season Slate

First Half Goals by Braun, Zayed & Mares Send “Boys in Blue” to Third Straight Win


INDIANAPOLIS (Saturday, October 22, 2016) – Indy Eleven finished its 16-game home slate in regular season play undefeated thanks to a late first-half onslaught, goals by Justin Braun, Eamon Zayed and Dylan Mares lifting the “Boys in Blue”  to a 3-0 victory over Puerto Rico FC in front of 8,916 fans at IUPUI’s Carroll Stadium.

PHOTOS: Click to download pictures from #INDvPRFC from the NASL’s FTP site

STATS: Get detailed Opta statistics from #INDvPRFC via the NASL MatchCenter

Indy Eleven’s fourth shutout in its last six games - aided by a red card shown to Puerto Rico FC forward Oliver in the 37th minute - helped Indiana’s Team finish the regular season with a 13W-3D-0L home mark. That record bodes well for Indy Eleven’s prospects in its postseason debut two weeks from today on Saturday, Nov. 5, when it will host FC Edmonton in The Championship Semifinal.

“We were very impressed with the team’s effort tonight. To be able to play in front of that crowd with that energy was the best boost we could have asked for,” said Indy Eleven head coach Tim Hankinson. “I thought that we had a tough opening 20 minutes, but the goal helped to open the game up and when they went down to ten men, we knew we had to push.”

While the game would start with both teams able to get into the final third fairly easily, the first notable event of the match came in the 15th minute when Oliver earned his first yellow card for colliding hard into Indy Eleven goalkeeper Jon Busch on a 50-50 challenge in the air. Indy defender Nemanja Vukovic’s 28th minute free kick signaled Indy’s offensive intentions, but the 20-yard effort was batted by a diving Trevor Spangenberg, forcing the ball off the crossbar and out for a corner.

Indy Eleven would not be denied much longer however, as the home side broke through in the 36th minute through Braun, who first-timed Sinisa Ubiparipovic’s square ball off of Spangenberg and in for the opener.  A minute later Indy would find itself both a goal up and a man up after Oliver picked up his second yellow card for elbowing Indy captain Colin Falvey off the ball.

From there it was one-way traffic for Indy Eleven, which doubled its lead shortly after Don Smart was pulled down inside the area by Ramon Soria in the 44th minute, another play orchestrated by an Ubiparipovic dish. Zayed stepped up to take the ensuing penalty, and while Spangenberg saved the initial low effort, the rebound bounced right back to Zayed for his 15th goal of the campaign.

“The only element we need is that crowd,” said Zayed. “Playing in front of the Brickyard Battalion, and to go undefeated here the whole year – a lot of people were laughing at me when I said we could do it. But as a group we knew it was possible and we’re thrilled to have executed.”

Three minutes later Mares all but put the match away, accepting Braun’s pass at the top of the arc and cutting back inside to fire a right-footed shot that left Spangenberg flat-footed and frustrated, pushing the lead to 3-0 in front of an appreciative Carroll Stadium audience.  

Indy Eleven was content to control possession and take the air out of the ball in the second half, but that doesn’t mean chances weren’t for the taking. Wednesday’s hero Nicki Paterson nearly flicked on Marco Franco’s well-driven ball to the six in the 61st minute, only to see the chance flash just wide left, and in the 68th minute forced Spangenberg into a diving save to stop a blast from 30 yards. Braun was robbed of a second in the 73rd minute, his header of Smart’s splendid back post cross hitting off the left post.

The defensive effort was elementary for the Boys in Blue, who allowed only three shots - and none on goal to test Busch - en route to their 11th clean sheet on the season.

While its spot in The Championship has been wrapped up since June, Indy Eleven could very well have an impact on the last postseason spot when it closes out the regular season next Sunday, Oct. 30, at the current holder of the fourth and final spot in Rayo OKC (7:00 p.m. kickoff, live on

NASL Fall Season
Indy Eleven  3 : 0  Puerto Rico FC
Saturday, October 22, 2016
Michael A. Carroll Stadium – Indianapolis, IN
Attendance: 8,916

Indy Eleven:
Fall Season: 11W-4D-6L, 37 pts., 2nd place
Overall Season: 15W-10D-6L, 55 pts., 2nd place

Puerto Rico FC:
Fall Season: 4W-9D-8L, 21 pts., 11th place
Overall Season: 4W-9D-8L, 21 pts., 12th place

Scoring Summary:
IND - Justin Braun (Sinisa Ubiparipovic) 36’
IND - Eamon Zayed (unassisted) 45’
IND - Dylan Mares (Justin Braun) 48+’

Discipline Summary:
PRFC - Oliver (caution) 15’
PRFC - Oliver (second caution/ejection) 37’

Indy Eleven line-up (4-4-2, L-->R):  Jon Busch; Nemanja Vuković, Greg Janicki, Colin Falvey (capt), Lovel Palmer (Marco Franco 35’); Dylan Mares, Brad Ring, Sinisa Ubiparipovic (Nicki Paterson 60’), Don Smart (Duke Lacroix 75’); Eamon Zayed, Justin Braun

Indy Eleven bench: Keith Cardona (GK), Daniel Keller, Omar Gordon, Souleymane Youla

Puerto Rico FC (4-4-2): Trevor Spangenberg; Ramon Soria, Cristiano Dias (capt), Ramon Martin del Campo, Rudy Dawson; Kyle Culbertson, Michael Kafari (Chris Nurse 21’), Tyler Rudy, Paulo Mendes (Joseph Marrero 64’); Sydney Rivera (Brian Bement 81’), Oliver

Puerto Rico FC bench: David Meves (GK), Camilo Botero