INDIANAPOLIS (June 24, 2017) – An end-to-end affair that featured numerous chances for both sides, Indy Eleven defeated North Carolina FC, 2-1, to earn its second straight victory of the year and the first on the road in 2017.
The hosts got things started quickly at WakeMed Soccer Park when midfielder Tiyi Shipalane put the finishing touches on a move that ended in unlucky fashion for the “Boys in Blue.” Working forward from the right side, forward Billy Schuler got on the end of a pass that he put under Busch only to see it ricochet off the right post. However, in the right place at the right time, Shipalane was able to tap-in from close range to open the scoring.
In the 17th minute, forward Matt Fondy was gifted an opportunity to double the lead, but Indy goalkeeper Jon Busch made one of his eight major saves on the night to keep him out. The first chance for Indy fell the way of Justin Braun in the 20th minute. Breaking ahead, Braun was played in by Zayed but after rounding the NCFC ‘keeper Sylvestre, he couldn’t get an effort on goal. However, just a minute later Braun was in the thick of things again and wouldn’t let a second chance fall by the wayside. Working combination play down the right flank, right back Marco Franco whipped in a cross that the forward put a bullet header on to power home past Sylvestre and level the scoring.
Without hardly time to blink, Indy rode their wave of momentum and Braun was involved once more in making things happen. Streaking up the center, Braun spotted the run of Eamon Zayed after receiving consecutive one-touch passes from midfielder Sinisa Ubiparipovic and Ben Speas. Playing in Zayed on his left foot, the forward saw his shot take a fortunate deflection and beat Sylvestre to put Indy Eleven in front.
Playing out the first half, three golden opportunities came to NCFC. Two for Lance Laing came in the 32nd and 37th minutes, but “Buschy” made himself big to save a chipped effort on the first and beat away a second five minutes later to preserve the advantage. However, Indy nearly added a third before the break after Ben Speas saw his shot saved only for the rebound to fall to Braun. Though just a few yards from goal, the second year “Boy in Blue” couldn’t put it in the back of the net.
A closely contested second half, one of the better looks on goal came in the opening minutes for Eamon Zayed. Off a free kick by defender Nemanja Vukovic, the Irishman dipped his head just underneath the cross to get it on target but Sylvestre was in the way to prevent a third. Things really began rolling for Indy in the 56th minute when “Vuko,” again forward into the box, was brought down by NCFC defender Kadeem Moses for a penalty. Zayed stepped up to the spot, but Sylvestre was equal to a low, driven effort to the ‘keeper’s right side and Indy couldn’t extend their one-goal lead.
A final set of chances fell to a tired set of NCFC legs in the 77th minute. On the turn, forward Billy Schuler came closest as he flashed a shot towards a near blindsided Busch, but the veteran turned up again to get low and collect with both palms. For Indy, the win signified the second in as many weeks against North Carolina FC ahead of their trip to take on the New York Cosmos at MCU Park on Tuesday, July 4.
Indy Eleven will return home to IUPUI’s Michael A. Carroll Stadium to face the New York Cosmos on Saturday, July 8 at 7:30 P.M. ET. Tickets for the game – and all remaining 10+ NASL matches at “The Mike” in 2017 – can be purchased for as little as $11 online at www.IndyEleven.com or by phone at 317-685-1100.
NASL Spring Season
North Carolina FC 1 : 2 Indy Eleven
Saturday, June 24, 2017
Carroll Stadium – Indianapolis, IN
NCFC – Tiyi Shipalane 9’
IND – Justin Braun (Marco Franco) 21’
IND – Eamon Zayed (Justin Braun) 23’
NCFC – Christian Ibeagha 29’
IND – Don Smart 45+1’
NCFC – Kadeem Moses 56’
IND – Jon Busch 87’
Indy Eleven line-up (4-4-2, L-->R): Jon Busch (GK); Nemanja Vukovic, Daniel Keller (Anthony Manning 85’), Colin Falvey ©, Marco Franco; Ben Speas, Brad Ring, Sinisa Ubiparipovic (Craig Henderson 66’), Don Smart; Justin Braun, Eamon Zayed (David Goldsmith 76’)
IND bench: Keith Cardona (GK); Tanner Thompson, Jason Plumhoff
North Carolina FC line-up (4-4-1-1, L->R): Brian Sylvestre (GK); Paul Black, Christian Ibeagha, Connor Tobin, Kareem Moses; Lance Laing (Saeed Robinson 46’), Nazmi Albadawi ©, Bolu Akinyode, Austin Da Luz (Anthony Marcelin 77’); Tiyi Shipalane; Matt Fondy (Dre Fortune 72’), Billy Schuler
NCFC bench: Macklin Robinson (GK), Brad Ruhaak, Boluwatife Akinyode, Brian Shriver