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NASL Fulltime Recap Carolina RailHawks 1 : 2 Indy Eleven

July 12, 2014


CARY, NC (Saturday, July 12, 2014) – Indy Eleven left it late, but the expansion squad opened up its NASL Fall Season with its first win in league play, capturing a 2-1 victory over the Carolina RailHawks at WakeMed Soccer Park.  Substitute midfielder Don Smart bagged the game winner in the 87th minute, finishing off a perfect 1-2 combination with fellow sub Dylan Mares to give the visitors their historic first NASL win.

“The track record here for the RailHawks is obviously one of the best in the league, so I’m really proud of all the work our guys put in tonight,” said Indy Eleven Head Coach Juergen Sommer. “This is a great way for us to start the Fall Season for our organization and our fans.”

The match began in an all-too-familiar fashion for Indy Eleven (1-0-0, 3 pts. in Fall Season; 1-5-4, 7 pts. overall), which allowed the first goal in the 23rd minute.  Carolina’s Enzo Martinez found the back of the net for the RailHawks (0-1-0 in Fall Season, 4-4-2, 14 pts. overall) after he toe-touched his way around one defender and through the box putting him in a one-on-one position with Indy goalkeeper Kristian Nicht. Martinez blasted the ball off the outstretched fingers of Nicht and into the net to give the home side the early advantage.

Indy Eleven enjoyed the bulk of the possession in the opening half but had nothing to show for it despite creating numerous dangerous chances, the best coming on a swerving 35-yard shot from midfielder Kleberson, making his first start since May 10, which forced RailHawks netminder Scott Goodwin into a parrying stop.

The game’s complexion changed in the 57th minute when Carolina defender Austen King earned a red card after tripping Ben Spencer on a breakaway towards Goodwin.  The ensuing 20-yard free kick by Kleberson rang the top of the crossbar, signaling Indy Eleven’s intentions for the final half hour.

It was Spencer who tied the match in the 65th minute after re-gathering a through ball from A.J. Corrado that was deflected off a RailHawks defender. The young forward drew Goodwin off his line and finished low to equalize, setting up a furious finish.  Smart followed suit with three minutes remaining in regulation, working a textbook give-and-go with Mares to get inside the area before calmly finishing low as well to put Indy up 2-1. The Eleven managed four minutes of stoppage time efficiently, giving the squad its long-awaited first league victory.

Indy Eleven will look to make it two in a row next Saturday, July 19, when the “Boys in Blue” will welcome the Tampa Bay Rowdies to IUPUI’s Michael A. Carroll Stadium for a 7:30 p.m. ET kickoff.  A limited number of tickets remain for Indy Eleven’s return to “The Mike” and can be secured by visiting the “Tickets” section of IndyEleven.com  or calling 317-685-1100 Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

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