INDIANAPOLIS (July 4, 2017) – An entertaining bout between Indy Eleven and the New York Cosmos wrapped up with both sides taking home a point at MCU Park.
Indy got the match going quickly with a scoring chance inside the first two minutes for midfielder Don Smart. With forward Eamon Zayed streaking down the left, the Irishman stopped on a dime to lift a ball towards Smart at the back post. However, as the ball missed the head of a Cosmos defender, Smart miscued his shot and the chance went wide.
After continual pressing, though, Indy would open the scoring just after the opening half hour thanks to midfielder Ben Speas. Pushing up the right side once again, defender Marco Franco threaded the needle for one of the newer “Boys In Blue,” and a clever touch from Speas allowed him to slot the ball between Cosmos’ ‘keeper Jimmy Maurer’s legs for the first goal of the night. For Speas, it was his third goal of the year, putting him level with Eamon Zayed for second on the team scoring charts, and the second assist in as many weeks for defender Marco Franco.
The best chance of the opening half for the hosts came in the 40th minute through the captain Ayoze. With enough real estate in front of him, the defender stepped up and ripped a shot at Indy ‘keeper Jon Busch, who was able to corral the ball after making one of his eight saves on the night, an individual game record.
The second half saw the Cosmos press higher up the pitch on the Indy goal, and after creating a few chances they earned another solid look in the 60th minute. Forward Emmanuel Ledesma was in a similar position as his teammate Ayoze when taking a drive at Busch’s goal, except this time the ‘netminder could only watch as Ledesma’s bullet landed just wide of the far post. Two minutes later, Indy would get their best chance of the second half as Smart settled a ball for Justin Braun. Though Cosmos defender Ryan Richter would head the chance clear, Indy defender Nemanja Vukovic followed up on the half-volley only for the shot to settle wide.
Drama ensued in the 86th minute when Indy Eleven defender Colin Falvey came together with Ledesma in the penalty area, which resulted in the head official pointing directly to the spot. Stepping up, Ledesma beat Busch to Busch’s left into the side-netting and the Cosmos were able to pull one back for the draw.
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
New York Cosmos 1 : 1 Indy Eleven
Saturday, July 4, 2017
MCU Park – Brooklyn, NY
IND – Ben Speas (Marco Franco) 33’
NYC – Emmanuel Ledesma 86’
NYC – Eric Calvillo 72’
IND – David Goldsmith 78’
IND – Lovel Palmer 90’
NYC – Ryan Richter 90+3’
Indy Eleven line-up (4-4-2, L->R): Jon Busch (GK); Nemanja Vukovic, Daniel Keller, Colin Falvey ©, Marco Franco (Lovel Palmer 84’); Ben Speas, Brad Ring, Sinisa Ubiparipovic (Craig Henderson 66’), Don Smart; Justin Braun, Eamon Zayed (David Goldsmith 73’)
IND bench: Keith Cardona (GK); Tanner Thompson, Adrian Ables
New York Cosmos line-up (4-4-2, L->R): Jimmy Maurer (GK); Ryan Richter, David Ochieng, Ayoze © (Eric Calvillo 59’), Darrius Barnes; Danny Szetela, Juan Guerra, Walter Restrepo (Eugene Starikov 46’), Jimmy Mulligan; Pablo Vranjican (Bledi Bardic 81’), Emmanuel Ledesma
NYC bench: Kyle Zobeck (GK); Alexis Velela, Salvatore Barone, Danilo Radjen