Indy Strives for Five Unbeaten in First Meeting with Monterey Bay F.C.
Indy Eleven at Monterey Bay F.C.
Saturday, September 17, 2022 – 10:00 p.m. ET
Cardinale Stadium – Seaside, Calif.
Local TV: none
Streaming Video: ESPN+ (click to subscribe)
Radio (Spanish): none
In-game updates: @IndyElevenLive Twitter feed, presented by Central Indiana Honda Dealers
Live stats: #MBvIND MatchCenter on USLChampionship.com
2022 USL CHAMPIONSHIP REGULAR SEASON RECORDS
Indy Eleven: 9W-14L-5D (-10 GD), 32 pts.; 9th in Eastern Conference
Monterey Bay F.C.: 11W-14L-2D (-12 GD), 35 pts.; 11th in Western Conference
COMMUNITY HEALTH NETWORK SPORTS MEDICINE INDY ELEVEN INJURY REPORT
OUT: FW Manuel Arteaga (R knee), FW Aris Briggs (R shin), DF A.J. Cochran (hamstring), GK Bryan Meredith (R hand fracture)
** Jesus Vazquez will receive a one-game suspension from the USL Championship due to caution accumulation (8th caution of season) should he see a yellow card in Saturday’s match
Indy Eleven will make its longest road trip of the 2022 season when it heads to the Pacific Coast (or at least within a mile of it) for its first meeting against expansion side Monterey Bay F.C. on Saturday evening.
The Eleven enter the weekend on a roll, unbeaten in four straight games, including three wins at home against playoff-bound competition. Postseason participation isn’t the team’s primary motivation at this point, but another win this weekend would stave off mathematical elimination heading into the final four weeks of play. Rather, the ability to “run through the tape” of an up-and-down campaign looks to be enough of a carrot for the Boys in Blue, whose 4-3 bounce-back win last weekend was the latest case of triumph in the face of adversity during the final third of the regular season.
While Monterey Bay F.C.’s 35 points are just three more than Indy possesses, they still have everything to play for as one of five teams sitting within two points of the Western Conference’s final playoff position – currently held by Las Vegas Lights FC on 37 points.
MBFC will enter Saturday’s affair well-rested after last weekend’s pivotal meeting at Las Vegas was postponed due to a water-logged pitch at Cashman Field (make-up date still TBD as of press time). The expansion side enters winners of their last two matches, both at Cardinale Stadium against San Diego Loyal (3-1) and Orange County SC (1-0) on Sept. 3 and 7, respectively.
Frank Yallop’s side is spearheaded in attack by Chase Boone and Sam Gleadle, each of whom have six goals and pace the squad in shots and shots on target, while Morey Doner (5) and James Murphy (4) lead MBFC in assists. Antony Siaha has solidified a rotating cast in goal, starting the squad’s last 11 contests and registering a 7W-3L-1D record in the process to help Monterey Bay get back into the postseason conversation during their opening season.
LAST TIME OUT
It was easy until it wasn’t, but Indy Eleven found a way to collect a thrilling 4-3 result over Birmingham Legion FC in front of an announced crowd of 10,104 at IUPUI Carroll Stadium to push its undefeated streak to four games. Despite letting a three-goal lead elapse over the middle of the match, the Boys in Blue kept their resolve and found the match winner late through Stefano Pinho’s 10th goal of the season.
Midfielder Solomon Asante collected a trio of assists, including corner kick services that Neveal Hackshaw headed home early in the first half to qive Indy a fast 2-0 jump. Just past the hour mark Juan Tejada opened his Eleven scoring account to move the advantage to three goals, but goalkeeper Tim Trilk’s foul on Marlon Santos inside his penalty area minutes later set up Enzo Martinez’s spot-kick rebound goal to scratch that goal back prior to halftime.
Santos took matters into his own hands after the break, scoring twice less than 10 minutes apart after the hour mark to bring the wild match back to all-square at 3-3. However, it was Asante again playing distributer for the difference-maker in the 78th minute, his square ball across the six setting up Pinho to sweep home his third goal in as many games to lift the Boys in Blue to three straight wins at home in two weeks’ time.
IND – Neveal Hackshaw (Solomon Asante) 11’
IND – Neveal Hackshaw (Solomon Asante) 16’
IND – Juan Tejada (Robby Dambrot) 31’
BHM – Enzo Martinez (unassisted) 35’
BHM – Marlon Santos (Enzo Martinez) 62’
BHM – Marlon Santos (Sadik Balarabe) 71’
IND – Stefano Pinho (Solomon Asante) 78’
Indy Eleven lineup (4-4-2): Tim Trilk; Robby Dambrot, Jesus Vazquez, Mechack Jerome, Jared Timmer; Ayoze (captain) (Raul Aguilera 58’), Neveal Hackshaw (Bryam Rebellon 67’), Samuel Asante (Rodney Michael 96+’), Sam Brown; Juan Tejada (Justin Ingram 68’), Stefano Pinho
IND substitutes: Sean Lewis (GK), Alex McQueen, Wilfredo Rivera
Monterey Bay F.C. 1 : 0 Orange County SC
Wednesday, Sept. 7 | Stats & Highlights
Sam Gleadle’s 51st minute goal made all the difference in a match that was always slightly tilted towards the home side at Cardinale Stadium. Despite the tight scoreline, MBFC outshot OCSC 13-10 and finished with a 7-2 edge in shots on target, giving Orange County backstop Pat Rakovsky a busy night in his area all around. The victory gave Monterey Bay a vital three points to get back with a three-point result of playoff positioning – including a leg up on the defending USL Championship trophy lifters from Orange County in that race.
#MBvIND SERIES: Saturday marks the first regular season matchup between Indy Eleven and Monterrey Bay F.C., which is holding its own in Western Conference play during its 2022 expansion season in the USL Championship. So far this season, Indy Eleven is 3W-4L-2D in first-time matchups in USL Championship action, including a 1-2-1 mark in road contests. MBFC represents the 10th and final unfamiliar opponent of the 2022 campaign for the Boys in Blue.
vs. LA Galaxy II (1-1 D on April 2)
at Rio Grande Valley FC (2-1 W on April 9)
vs. Orange County SC (3-1 W on April 30)
vs. New Mexico United (1-2 L on May /28)
at The Miami FC (1-1 D on June 8)
at Colorado Springs Switchbacks SC (3-4 L on 6/18)
at San Diego Loyal (0-5 L on June 25)
vs. Detroit City FC (0-1 L on July 2)
vs. San Antonio FC (1-0 W on Aug. 27)
at Monterey Bay F.C. (Saturday)
#MBvIND FAMILIAR FACES: There are no Eleven alums on MBFC’s inaugural roster, and no Hoosier State connections for the Californian side. However, it would not be a surprise to see defender Jesus Vazquez have a sizeable rooting contingent make the slightly more than 2-hour drive north from his hometown of San Luis Obispo, Calif., on Saturday night.
ELEVEN PLAYER TO WATCH: DF JESUS VAZQUEZ
While it’s not a true homecoming, as mentioned above, the San Luis Obispo-native Vazquez will be close enough to his old stomping grounds that he’ll likely see plenty of familiar faces in the stands at Cardinale Stadium. Speaking of familiarity, the 27-year-old has been a stalwart presence in the middle of the Eleven backline since he came to the Circle City from Rio Grande Valley in late July, starting seven of his eight available contests – and he ended up playing 80 minutes the one night head coach Mark Lowry attempted to rest him during a congested schedule period a could of weeks back against Louisville.
In a battle between two teams with very similar profiles – both have scored 32 goals on the season and are also tight in goals conceded (42 for Indy vs. 44 for MB) – it’s likely the little plays that will make the difference – recovery runs, tight clearances, the challenge with a razor-thin margin. Despite a small sample size with the Boys in Blue, Vazquez has already proven to be a heady player with a knack for those moments, and with just a little more motivation we’ll look for him to lead by example come Saturday night.