Indy Eleven at Charleston Battery
Saturday, June 4, 2022 – 7:00 p.m. ET
Patriots Point – Mt. Pleasant, S.C.
Local TV: N/A
Radio (Spanish): N/A
2022 USL CHAMPIONSHIP REGULAR SEASON RECORDS
Indy Eleven: 5W-4L-2D (+2 GD), 17 pts.; 7th in Eastern Conference
Charleston Battery: 1W-8L-2D (-16 GD), 5 pts.; 13th in Eastern Conference
COMMUNITY HEALTH NETWORK SPORTS MEDICINE INDY ELEVEN INJURY REPORT
OUT: Ayoze (L hamstring strain), Aris Briggs (shin contusion), Jonas Fjeldberg (R hamstring strain)
QUESTIONABLE: Bryam Rebellon
IND: Neveal Hackshaw (Trinidad & Tobago), Alex McQueen (Grenada), Noah Powder (Trinidad & Tobago)
CHS: Benjamin Ettienne (Grenada), AJ Patterson (Grenada)
Indy Eleven kicks off a month-long road trip Saturday night at the Charleston Battery at their “new-ish” home of Patriots Point in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, just across the Cooper River from the Holy City proper. Saturday’s match marks the first meeting between the Eleven and the Battery in nearly three years due to scheduling changes in the USL Championship made during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Boys in Blue hit the road looking to rebound from a fluky loss, just its second setback in the Eleven’s last nine contests – while Charleston’s draw at Loudoun United FC capped a winless month of May for the Black and Yellow, but also stopped the bleeding of a four-game losing skid. Both sides will also be dealing with multiple absences due to international duty, although the Boys in Blue will be hurt more in that department without the services of regular starters Neveal Hackshaw, Alex McQueen, and Noah Powder, than will Charleston, who will miss the lightly used duo of defender AJ Patterson and midfielder Benjamin Ettienne – both Grenada team mates of McQueen.
While the Boys in Blue took a tough 2-1 defeat last weekend to New Mexico United, the team’s offense continued to produce. Indy extended its streak of consecutive matches with a goal to nine when Stefano Pinho scored his team-leading fifth goal of the season in the 80th minute. In his first significant action since joining Indiana’s Team, two-time USL Championship Most Valuable Player Solomon Asante notched his first Indy Eleven assist on the goal, putting a stamp on his active half hour at Carroll Stadium.
Across the pitch, goalkeeper Tim Trilk saw his first start in league action for Indy Eleven, replacing the recalled Nashville SC loanee Elliot Panicco in the loss to New Mexico. While one goalkeeper left for the Music City another arrived in the person of Bryan Meredith, who himself joined the Boys in Blue on loan from NSC last Thursday. While Meredith was available to play last weekend it was Trilk who got the call and saw only four shots come his way, continuing the Eleven’s trend of allowing scant chances by the opposition at home.
So far, 2022 has been a rocky season for the Charleston Battery. The East’s 13th place side has not won a game in nearly three months, taking a 1-0 victory against FC Tulsa in its opening match of the season on March 12 before gaining just two points from its last 10 outings. The Battery scored just one goal during the entire month of May, that coming in last week’s 1-1 draw against Loudoun United FC.
The Battery are tied for the fewest goals in the USL Championship with seven, for the fewest clean sheets with one, and for the second-most yellow cards in the league with 39. Augustine Williams, Mauro Cichero and Aidan Apodaca have combined to score six of the team’s seven goals, each notching two a piece.
LAST TIME OUT
Indy Eleven 1 : 2 New Mexico United
Indy Eleven’s eight-game undefeated streak at Carroll Stadium came to an end as New Mexico United won 2-1 in a Saturday matinee matchup. The (other) Black and Yellow opened the scoring late in the first half, when Justin Portillo’s bending blast bounced off the underside of the crossbar in the 38th minute, and United doubled its lead courtesy of an own goal by Mechack Jerome in the 63rd minute. While Stefano Pinho’s goal in the 80th minute sparked a late comeback bid, it ultimately wasn’t enough to continue its four-game home winning streak.
Charleston Battery 1 : 1 Loudoun United FC
Sat., May 28 | Stats
Charleston Battery ended a four-match losing streak last week, drawing 1-1 with Loudoun United FC in Leesburg, Va. Loudoun’s Alexander Dexter opened scoring late in the 76th minute, but an 85th minute red card to United’s Rio Hope-Gund gave Charleston added hope downt he stretch. The fifth minute of stoppage time saw the Battery even up from the unlikeliest of sources, as goalkeeper Joe Kuzminsky beat his opposite number Luis Zamudio to a popped up corner kick on the goalline to score the equalizer – his team’s first goal in more than four-and-a-half games – and secure a point on the road.
SERIES VS. CHARLESTON BATTERY
Indy Eleven trails the all-time series to Charleston Battery 1W-2L-1D across four meetings. The teams first met in 2018, playing twice that season and twice in 2019. Saturday’s match marks the first meeting between the sides since 2019, due to scheduling changes made due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Eleven are undefeated on home turf against Charleston, but have yet to win in South Carolina. The two sides last met on Sept. 4, 2019, a 1-0 win for Charleston at its former home of Blackbaud Stadium thanks to a goal from Romario Piggott in the 42nd minute.
ELEVEN PLAYER TO WATCH: MF SOLOMON ASANTE
Welp, it’s time. The two-time USL Championship Most Valuable Player made his long-awaited Indy Eleven debut May 21 against New York Red Bulls II, playing in the final 11 minutes of the match. The Ghanaian saw an increased role last week against New Mexico United, entering in the 62nd minute and playing the remainder of the match, during which Asante notched his first assist in an Indy Eleven uniform, finding Stefano Pinho in front of the net on a strong, low cross from near the right endline that showed his service-with-purpose is still at the forefront of his game. As Asante has seen his role increase week after week, the star midfielder should be playing more minutes and scoring goals with his trademark electrifying style in no time – but perhaps sooner rather than later with injuries and national team duty paring down Mark Lowry’s available selections. Saturday’s match is the start of Asante’s first road trip with the Boys in Blue, and will also be the former MVP’s first match against Charleston Battery after he spent his previous four influential USLC campaigns out in the Western Conference with Phoenix Rising.