INDIANAPOLIS (September 27, 2017) – Indy Eleven produced its sixth clean sheet of the year in halting hosts Jacksonville Armada FC at Hodges Stadium.
Head coach Tim Hankinson opted for Gerardo Torrado and Ben Speas in place of David Goldsmith and Paulo Junior in a starting XI otherwise unchanged from the team’s 2-0 loss to FC Edmonton last time out. In defense, captain Colin Falvey stood alongside Cory Miller and the pair were called into action early on. In the 9th minute, Jacksonville sniffed their first chance at goal when forward Tony Taylor drove forward on a breakaway. Taylor worked his way into the box and forced Falvey the wrong way on an attempted challenge only to see his effort on goal blocked by Cory Miller.
On the attacking side, Indy’s best opportunities were produced on the counter attack, and that began in the 13th minute with midfielder Don Smart leading the charge. Surging down the flank, the Jamaican, nearing his 100th appearance for the club, whipped in a low cross that the Armada FC back line repelled with Zayed waiting in a central position to tap the ball home. Indy continued their attacking spell with another chance for the forward Zayed in the 25th minute. After wrestling with Armada FC defender Mechack Jerome, the Irishman found himself unmarked near the penalty spot but was inches away from toeing an effort on goal.
A humid night in Jacksonville, Armada FC midfielder J.C. Banks began to take advantage of his home territory. However, though he created a pair of chances for his side towards the end of the first half, he could not convert and the two sides went scoreless into the halftime break.
Jacksonville swapped forward Derek Gebhard for fellow frontman Tony Taylor to start the second half and the substitute immediately began to test the staunch Eleven defense. Near the hour mark, Gebhard found space dropping in to receive a pass and played a ball to J.C. Banks in an excellent attacking position. In behind the defense, Banks struck a low drive towards the far post but his effort cannoned off the post before eventually ending up in the arms of Indy Eleven goalkeeper Jon Busch.
The best second-half chance for Indy came via Don Smart in the 76th minute despite his side moving ahead frequently on the counter. Substitute forward David Goldsmith slid a clever ball to Smart just wide to right, but instead of squaring the ball the midfielder opted to go for goal at the near post but managed a solid save from Armada FC’s Caleb Patterson-Sewell.
In the end, “Buschy” was tested just once as Indy won over 80% of their tackles in shutting out Jacksonville Armada FC.
Indy Eleven returns home to IUPUI’s Michael A. Carroll Stadium to host Puerto Rico FC on Wednesday, October 4 at 7:00 P.M. ET. Tickets for the game – and all remaining 4+ 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 Fall Season
Jacksonville Armada FC 0 : 0 Indy Eleven
Wednesday, September 27, 2017
Hodges Stadium – Jacksonville, FL
JAX – Kevan George 21’
JAX – Ciaran Kilduff 32’
IND – Don Smart 37’
JAX – Aaron Pitchkolan 62’
IND – Brad Ring 69’
Indy Eleven lineup (4-2-3-1, L-->R): Jon Busch (GK); Nemanja Vukovic, Cory Miller, Colin Falvey ©, Marco Franco; Brad Ring (Craig Henderson 85’), Gerardo Torrado; Ben Speas (Paulo Junior 63’), Sinisa Ubiparipovic (David Goldsmith 63’), Don Smart; Eamon Zayed
IND bench: Keith Cardona (GK); Kwame Watson-Siriboe, Tanner Thompson
Jacksonville Armada FC lineup (4-4-2, L->R): Caleb Patterson-Sewell (GK); Kalen Ryden, Aaron Pitchkolan ©, Mechack Jerome, Bryam Rebellon; J.C. Banks (Jemal Johnson 84’), Kevan George, Jack Blake, Nicklas Maripuu (Zach Steinberger 56’); Ciaran Kilduff, Tony Taylor (Derek Gebhard 46’)
JAX bench: Kyle Nasta (GK); Drew Beckie, Peabo Doue, Brian Shriver