CINCINNATI, OH – FC Cincinnati returned to USL action Saturday and forward Danni König scored late to help the Orange and Blue earn a 2-2 draw against Orlando City B at Nippert Stadium. FCC rewrote the USL single-game regular season records as 25,308 attended in support of the club on “Fan Appreciation Night.” FCC held the previous mark of 24,376 set in 2016, also against Orlando City B in the final home match of the regular season on Sept. 17.
“It was a very emotional week for us, as we went through the high of Wednesday’s victory before knowing we needed to return for a USL match,” FCC Head Coach Alan Koch said postgame. “Our group came back tonight and fought until the end. I’m impressed with the character. Orlando came up with as many MLS players as they could, and I give them credit as they were very, very good tonight. As I always say, this game is about moments. We came out tonight with the right mentality from the start.”
FCC jumped on the scoreboard early on in the sixth minute. Defender Josu put the ball into play on an inbounds pass to midfielder Corben Bone, who quickly returned possession to the defender as he jogged into the fold. Josu crossed a ball from the far sideline to forward Kyle Greig on the right side of the six-yard box, who headed a score into the back of the net, for his first goal of the season.
Orlando City B followed the Orange and Blue’s offensive attack with two goals of their own in the 14th and 55th minutes, respectively, and carried a 2-1 lead into stoppage time near the end of the match.
FCC, playing to its strength of not letting up until the final whistle, came up with an equalizer in the 92nd minute on König’s score to finish with a draw. The play was initiated by Kenney Walker, who had been a second-half substitution for the Orange and Blue. Walker hustled to get the ball into play following an offside call on OCB. The midfielder drove a pass from one end of the turf and into the box on the other end. Defender Leo Pereira tried to prevent an opportunity for FCC by heading the ball, but König came up with possession and flicked a right-footed a shot over keeper Earl Edwards.
Following FCC’s early goal, OCB struck in the 14th minute. Defender Kevin Alston threw an inbounds pass overhead deep into the FCC box. Despite a good defensive play by defender Sem de Wit heading the ball out of the box, midfielder Austin Martz controlled possession and drilled a shot past goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt to even things up a one goal apiece.
Defense helped keep things even for FCC after 45 minutes as OCB managed twelve shots at the goal to only five for the Orange and Blue.
In the second half, the visitors tacked on a second score in the 55th minute to gain an advantage in what was a strong offensive output from both clubs. Midfielder Tony Rocha lofted a ball deep downfield to forward Hadji Barry just outside the FCC box. Barry dribbled close to the six-yard box as Hildebrandt defended, but Barry slid a goal from the right side of the box past Hildebrandt into the back-left corner of the net for a 2-1 lead.
FCC attempted to even it up in the 81st minute as midfielder Matt Bahner dribbled downfield and crossed a ball to Greig, looking for his second goal. Bahner’s cross was just outside the reach of a sliding Greig inside the six-yard box as he nearly ran into the goalpost.
FCC returns to the pitch Saturday, August 12 when they travel to face Louisville City FC. The match is scheduled to kick off at 7:30 PM.
FCC: 6th – Kyle Greig (Josu)
ORL: 14th – Austin Martz
ORL: 55th – Hadji Barry (Tony Rocha)
FCC: 92nd – Danni Konig
FCC: Mitch Hildebrandt, Austin Berry, Harrison Delbridge, Sem de Wit, Josu, Matt Bahner, Aodhan Quinn, Corben Bone, Jimmy McLaughlin, Kyle Greig, Andrew Wiedeman
ORL: Earl Edwards, Kevin Alston, Zach Hayden, Seb Hines, Leo Pereira, Tony Rocha, Lewis Neal, Paul Clowes, Austin Martz, Pierre Da Silva, Hadji Barry