Indy Eleven Settles for 1-1 Draw with Saint Louis FC
Midfielder Don Smart Tallies First Goal of Preseason in 64th Minute to Level for “Boys in Blue”
EVANSVILLE (Wednesday, March 16, 2016) – For the second straight game, Indy Eleven would grab a second half equalizer, this time midfielder Don Smart doing the honor with a 64th minute strike that countered a goal out of the halftime gate by Saint Louis FC in a 1-1 draw at Arad McCutcheon Stadium on the campus of the University of Evansville.
On a windy evening in Southwest Indiana, Indy Eleven would take some time to get into the match possession-wise, but goalkeeper Jon Busch would be on from the get-go for the “Boys in Blue.” The veteran netminder was forced into three saves in the opening 30 minutes, the best coming in the 16th minute when he bent low to bat down and handle Jamiel Hardware’s 25-yard free kick that snuck through the Eleven four-man wall.
Indy Eleven would get its best looks back to back in the 25th minute, but trialist forward Jair Reinoso was shouldered off a through ball in the area by Saint Louis goalkeeper Mark Pais before midfielder Duke Lacroix saw a second try on the push forward miss wide.
After a scoreless first half, it wouldn’t take long to move the scoreboard in the second 45 minutes as Saint Louis FC forward Irvin Herrera took away the ball from an Eleven defender in the final third and carried behind the backline before slotting low and right of Busch to give the USL side the 1-0 lead 25 seconds out of the locker room.
For the second straight game giving up the first goal seemed to energize the Eleven attack, paying off in the 64th minute with Smart’s first of the preseason. The play began when Lacroix pushed up the middle of the field and into the penalty area before deftly laying off for Smart, who lashed a first-time blast into the upper right corner from 12 yards out to even things up.
That would mark the final shot on goal for either side as the teams would settle for a share of the spoils out of the first ever professional exhibition game played in the River City.
Indy Eleven will continue its spring exhibition schedule this Saturday, March 19, with a scrimmage against its fourth USL foe of the preseason in Louisville City FC. The closed-door affair in the Indianapolis area will take place at 2:00 p.m. ET. As always, live updates will be posted as they happen via the @IndyElevenLive Twitter feed and additional Indy Eleven social media outlets.
Visit www.IndyEleven.com/preseason for the full details on Indy Eleven’s preseason itinerary leading up to the team’s third season of NASL play, beginning Saturday, April 2, at the Tampa Bay Rowdies. “Indiana’s Team” kicks off its home slate at IUPUI’s Carroll Stadium a week later on Saturday, April 9, against 2015 NASL Championship finalist Ottawa Fury FC. Season, single game and group tickets can be purchased at IndyEleven.com or by phone at 317-685-1100 (Mon.-Fri., 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. ET).
STL – Irvin Herrera (unassisted) 46’
IND – Don Smart (Duke Lacroix) 64’
Indy Eleven XI (4-2-3-1, L -> R): Jon Busch (Keith Cardona 70’); Nemanja VukoviÄ‡ (Nicki Paterson 70’), Greg Janicki, Colin Falvey (Cory Miller 60’), Lovel Palmer (Neil Shaffer 83’); Gorka Larrea (Marco Franco 35’), Brad Ring (Dylan Mares 60’); Duke Lacroix (Dragan Stojkov 70’), Eamon Zayed (Sinisa Ubiparipovic 70’), Justin Braun (Wojciech Wojcik 60’); Jair Reinoso* (Wojciech Wojcik 60’)
* = trialist
Saint Louis FC XI (4-2-3-1): Mark Pais; Parker Maher, James Musa, AJ Cochran (Sam Fink 32’), Richard Dixon (Jake Bond 72’); Chad Bond, Tyler David (Drew Connor); Schillo Tshuma (Mitch Lurie 72’), Jamiel Hardware (Mike Ambersley 72’), Charles Renken (Kentaro Takada 72’); Irvin Herrera (Jermie Lynch 72’)