This is the start of a new series where I take a look at the previous weekends game and breakdown some of the more notable results. I am going to focus primarily on the Eastern Conference and our direct rivals but will make sure to sprinkle in some Western Conference Action. This past week, 10 Eastern Conference teams were on a bye week but there were still a few interesting games.
First Win: Bethlehem Steel 0 - 1 Memphis 901 FC
Bethlehem Steel continue the tradition of allowing Tennessee USL teams to get their first ever win. Memphis 901 FC notch their first ever win after opening the season with a loss and a draw at home. Bethlehem enjoyed the majority of possession throughout the the game and pinged several shots off the post in the first half. in the 58th minute,Memphis' Rashawn Dally capitalized on a mistake from Bethlehem's Benjamin Ofiemu as the Steel centerback attempted to play the ball back to the goalkeeper. Dally, picked the ball up outside the box and slotted it past an on rushing Matt Freese. Bethlehem was almost able to tie it up in the 94th minute but Wesley Charpie made a last ditch block on a Shanyder Borgelin shot.
West Coast Wildcard: Real Monarchs 5 - 0 LA Galaxy II
After two straight draws, Real Monarchs gets their first win of the season with a 5 goal thumping over Los Dos. Ricardo Avila opened up the scoring in the 25th minute after picking up the ball off of a cross and slotting it home. Los Dos was able to keep it close until the wheels came off midway through the second half.
Maikel Chang opened up his account in the 60th minute with a fantastic strike. Josh Heard picked up the ball on the counter and ran at the heart of the LA defense. He squared the ball over to Chang who put the ball off the cross bar and down in to the net. LA left back Diedie Traore picked up a red card in the 70th after bringing down Heard. From the ensuing free kick, Cheng picked up his second goal. Goals by Lionel Etoundi in the 79th and Steve Jasso in the 86th brought the total to 5.
Rival Watch: Saint Louis FC 1 -1 Tampa Bay Rowdies
The Early season success of Saint Louis FC has been well documented both on the podcast and on the site and has allowed Tampa's results to have gone largely unnoticed. After a disappointing 2018, Tampa opened up the season with a 0-1 win on the road against Memphis and followed it up with a 2-0 win at home against the Riverhounds.
St. Louis started the game on the front foot with an early Caleb Calvert shot that came off the post in the 6th minute. In the 26th minute, Sam Fink found the back of the net off a Lewis Hilton free kick to put STL in the lead as they continue to be a threat from set pieces. 3 of their 4 goals this season have come off a set piece goal. Former NSC player Brandon Allen had a chance to bring the game level toward the close of the 1st half but missed just wide.
Tampa Bay opened up the second half with an early chance from Sebastian Guenzatti that was saved by Fenlason. They failed to generate another shot on target until STL goal scorer, Sam Fink, concede a penalty from a handball. Guenzatti slotted home the penalty to bring the teams level.
Nashville is off this weekend so stay tuned tomorrow as I take a look at the key games coming up this weekend.