TORONTO, Canada- Louisville City FC grabbed all three points and extended its unbeaten streak to five games in a midweek meeting with Toronto FC II on Wednesday by a score of 2-0, keeping its second clean sheet in two games. Opening in the 5th minute, Conor Shanosky nodded home a goal before Niall McCabe doubled the tally in the 64th minute with a sublime 30-yard chip into an open net.
LouCity dominated the match from start to finish, despite Major League Soccer’s Toronto FC loaning eight players to TFC II for the contest. Louisville City coach James O’Connor said he was incredibly proud of the way his team played in a challenging situation.
“I think it was a huge challenge," O'Connor said. "For them to turn around and receive eight players from an MLS team is a great challenge for us and I think it shows how far we’ve come as a football club, for them to loan eight players to strengthen their team. But, I thought we completely dominated the game.”
LouCity central defender and reigning USL Team of the Week honoree Shanosky scored after a scrum from a George Davis IV corner kick in the 5th minute. O’Connor said Davis, Guy Abend and Conor Shanosky all deserve a lot of credit for creating the own goal opportunity. Abend recorded the assist, heading the ball straight into the air inside the 6-yard box, neatly enough for Shanosky to finish.
“Obviously the first goal was a scramble from a corner," O’Connor said. "The delivery from George was very good, Guy got a head to it and Conor reacted which I thought was very pleasing."
McCabe took advantage of a poor pass from TFC II keeper Quillan Roberts and chipped it in from distance, giving LouCity a two-goal advantage in the second half. O’Connor’s squad didn’t look back after McCabe’s goal, and he said his fellow Irishman, along with USL-leading goal scorer Chandler Hoffman, deserve a ton of credit for his stunning finish.
“I think Niall’s goal was really, really good," O’Connor said. "If you look at the pressure Chandler put the defender under and had a great block. Then it comes out to Niall and it’s an incredible finish. To hit that ball first time the way he did, he deserves enormous credit. That’ll definitely win goal of the week. It was a phenomenal finish.”
Toronto- native Greg Ranjitsingh, who made his second start for the season in goal, kept another clean sheet. The Canadian performed well in his hometown and made a massive diving save when a TFC II free kick threatened to equalize in the first half. O’Connor said he was quite happy with Ranjitsingh against TFC II.
“I was really pleased for Greg to have another clean sheet," O’Connor said. "I thought he commanded his box very well and he made a big save from the free kick by catching it.”
Ranjitsingh’s fellow Torontonian, Mark-Anthony Kaye, started on Wednesday, facing his old club. Kaye played for 76 minutes and threatened all night, creating chances for his team on his own with his smooth dribbling and his tricky skills. O’Connor said Kaye played well against his old club.
“Tremendous effort from Mark," O’Connor said. "If you look at the work rate that Mark showed tonight, him and George, the wide guys put a lot of work in. Both him and George worked exceptionally hard,” O’Connor said.
With the win, LouCity remains undefeated away from Louisville Slugger Field. O’Connor said he was pleased to see his team continue to show the fight and spirit they’ve shown all season long at the end of a three-game stretch over the course of eight days.
“I thought the whole group, considering that was their third game in eight days, I thought the group worked really, really hard through the course of the eight days,” O’Connor said. “We made multiple changes to the team. It shows you what a great squad of players we have.”
Fortunately, the players will have an opportunity to catch their breaths. The Club’s next game is at home against Western Conference foe Saint Louis FC on May 14 (7:30 p.m. | TICKETS). O’Connor said he will do his best to make sure his players take advantage of the time off.
“We get an opportunity to give some rest to the players," O'Connor said. "It’s important we get some rest into the guys. We’ll definitely give them a little bit of time off. They fully deserve it. They’ve worked exceptionally hard over the past few weeks.”
Fans can stay up to date with all of Louisville City’s breaking news, roster updates and ticketing information by following the Club on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Season tickets are available for Louisville City’s historic second season via the Club’s official website.
Match: Toronto FC II vs. Louisville City FC
Date: May 4, 2016
Competition: United Soccer League
Venue: Ontario Soccer Centre
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. EST
Weather: 50 degrees; cloudy
LOU: 5’ - Conor Shanosky: Conor Shanosky smashed a shot on goal into the net after a pretty George Davis IV corner kick.
LOU: 64’ - Niall McCabe: McCabe, who often distributes goals, was able to get one of his own on Wednesday, chipping one in from distance after the TFC II keeper made a bad pass from outside of the penalty box.
LOU: 36’ - Greg Ranjitsingh: In front of his hometown, Ranjitsingh came up huge in the 36th minute with a diving save off of a TFC II free kick.
LOU: 90’ - Ben Newnam: Newnam kept the clean sheet for LouCity late in the match after a grounded cross made its way to a waiting TFC player. Newnam made a miraculous one-on-one block and cleared the line.
LOU: 13-Greg Ranjitsingh; 24-Kyle Smith, 5-Conor Shanosky, 6-Tarek Morad 2-Ben Newnam; 8-Guy Abend, 4-Aodhan Quinn (c), 12-Mark-Anthony Kaye (76’ 77-Andrew Lubahn), 11-Niall McCabe (85’ 9-Cameron Lancaster), 22-George Davis IV (76 7-Kadeem Dacres); 17-Chandler Hoffman (85’ 14-Ilija Ilic)
Subs not used: 15-Sean Reynolds, 1-Scott Goodwin, 20-Enrique Montano
TOR: 40-Quillan Roberts; 19-Daniel Lovitz, 15-Eriq Zavaleta, 6-Nick Hagglund, 32-Wesley Charpie (57’ 28-Mark Bloom); 14-Jay Chapman (61’ 36-Brian James), 20-Chris Mannella (c), 49-Martin Davis (72’ 31-Sal Bernal), 63-Liam Fraser (75’ 45-Luca Uccello); 48-Raheem Edwards, 11-Molham Babouli (72’ 64-Shaan Hundal)
Subs not used: 25-Alex Bono, 42-Mitchell Taintor
James O’Connor on dominating the match despite Toronto FC loaning eight players to TFC II: “I think it was a huge challenge. For them to turn around and receive eight players from an MLS team is a great challenge for us and I think it shows how far we’ve come as a football club, for them to loan eight players to strengthen their team. But, I thought we completely dominated the game.”
O’Connor on Mark-Anthony’s performance against his former club: “Tremendous effort from Mark. If you look at the work rate that Mark showed tonight, him and George, the wide guys put a lot of work in. Both him and George worked exceptionally hard.”
O’Connor on LouCity keeper Greg Ranjitsingh: “I was really pleased for Greg to have another clean sheet. I thought he commanded his box very well and he made a big save from the free kick by catching it.”
O’Connor on the upcoming time off for his players: “We get an opportunity to give some rest to the players. It’s important we get some rest into the guys. We’ll definitely give them a little bit of time off. They fully deserve it. They’ve worked exceptionally hard over the past few weeks.”