FC Cincinnati 2

RECAP | Stitz, Pinto power FC Cincinnati 2 past Philadelphia Union II for first road win of the season


FC Cincinnati 2 (6-12-4, 24 points) earned their first road win of the MLS NEXT Pro season Sunday night at Subaru Park with a 2-1 win over Philadelphia Union II (9-9-4, 33 points). The result leaves the Eastern Conference standings unchanged for both sides, as other league results stand.

Ben Stitz scored his sixth goal of the season in the 10th minute of play to give the Orange and Blue an early first half lead. Lucas Tamarez, who made his first start after signing with the club on August 3, picked up his first assist of his MLS NEXT Pro career after winning a failed Philadelphia clearance and picking out Stitz at the top of the 18-yard box. Stitz struck first time with a perfectly placed curling effort, beating Andrew Rick at the far post.

Union II responded quickly, applying pressure in the 12th minute with a dangerous attack led by Jeremy Rafanello. Rafanello picked out Christopher Olney making a late run into the box and a quick strike from the midfielder was met by a better save from Paul Walters. Olney followed his initial attempt with a second effort which was once again saved by Walters. Walters finished the first half with five saves.

Philadelphia found their breakthrough in the 17th minute as David Vazquez connected with Stefan Stojanovic on a long-lofted ball over the Cincinnati defense. Stojanovic was able to finish his long run and one-on-one against Walters for his eighth goal of the season. Vazquez registered his first assist of the season on the goal.

The Orange and Blue found themselves tied with Union II going into the break, but it took just two minutes for Cincinnati to restore their lead through Malik Pinto’s second goal of the season in the 47th minute. Arquimides Ordoñez played Pinto through on goal after holding play in midfield and Pinto was able to hold off a Union II defender before sliding one past Rick.

Pinto’s goal would prove enough as the Orange and Blue held Union II scoreless in the second half. Next up for FC Cincinnati 2 is a trip to in-state rival Columbus Crew 2 on Saturday, August 19 at Historic Crew Stadium. The match can be streamed live on MLS Season Pass on the Apple TV App with kickoff set for 6 p.m. ET.

FC Cincinnati 2 at Philadelphia Union II
Date: August 13, 2023
Venue: Subaru Park
Competition: MLS NEXT Pro regular season
Kickoff: 6:03 p.m. ET
Weather: 87 degrees, clear

PHI: 1-0-1
CIN: 1-1-2

PHI – S. Stojanovic (D. Vazquez) 17’
CIN – B. Stitz (L. Tamarez) 10’, M. Pinto (A. Ordoñez) 47’

PHI: A. Rick, J. Castillo, C. Rojas, D. Krueger (Neil Pierre, 90’+1), F. Westfield, K. Tucker (A. Perez, 90’+1), C. Olney (A. Sorenson, 90’+1), S. Stojanovic, D. Vazquez, J. Rafanello (B. Diallo, 70’), Nelson Pierre (E. Davis, 58’)

Substitutes not used: G. Atkinson, N. Nkanji

Head Coach: Marlon LeBlanc

CIN: P. Walters, H. Conteh (P. Horton, 65’), J. Machado (K. Thomas, 37’), J. Akpunonu, L. Aghedo, I. Foster, L. Tamarez, M. Pinto, J. Castellano, A. Ordoñez, B. Stitz

Substitutes not used: H. Morse, M. Schenfeld, J. Mora

Head Coach: Tyrone Marshall

Shots: 18 / 5
Shots on goal: 7 / 3
Saves: 1 / 6
Corner Kicks: 7 / 1
Fouls: 16 / 18
Offside: 3 / 2
Possession: 47.5 / 52.5

PHI – S. Stojanovic (Yellow card) 29’
PHI – J. Castillo (Yellow card) 68’
CIN – J. Akpunonu (Yellow card) 73’
CIN – J. Castellano (Yellow card) 90’+3
CIN – B. Stitz (Yellow card) 90’+4

Referee: Danielle Chesky
Ast. Referees: Sharon Gingrich, Patrick Casey
Fourth Official: Gary Gutierrez