ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Saint Louis FC won 2-0 against San Antonio FC in front of 4,781 fans at Toyota Stadium in Match 32 of the USL Regular Season.
Saint Louis FC left it late with the opening goal coming in the 79th minute as Lewis Hilton found the top corner for his third goal of the season before Albert Dikwa sealed the win with a goal in second-half stoppage time to earn all three points in a critical game in the USL Western Conference playoff race. The win sees Saint Louis FC improve to 13-8-10 with 49 points while San Antonio FC falls to 12-12-7 and remains on 43 points in the USL Western Conference.
The first half saw Saint Louis FC dominate possession and they nearly opened the scoring in the 3rd minute as Corey Hertzog got on the end of a Hilton free kick but his flick was saved by San Antonio FC goalkeeper Matt Cardone. The home side then had a great chance in the 14th minute as Wal Fall was played behind the defense and crossed the ball to Austin Martz but his sliding touch went narrowly wide. STLFC goalkeeper Tomas Gomez was then called into action with a save on Lance Liang’s shot from distance in the 24th minute before Hertzog saw his bullet header fly past the top corner from a Kyle Culbertson cross in the 31st minute to see both sides level at the break.
The second half saw both teams make substitutions early and it was substitute Kadeem Dacres who nearly opened the scoring but his curling effort went over the crossbar in the 58th minute. Fellow-substitute Dikwa would make the impact in the 79th minute, however, as he played the ball to Hilton who rifled it into the top corner. Gomez came up with another big save in the 83rd minute as he denied Omar Gordon from a free kick opportunity at the top of the box to preserve the lead and clean sheet. San Antonio would then finish the game with 10 men as Moises Hernandez was shown a straight red card for a foul on Hilton in the 87th minute and Dikwa would put the game to bed as he was played over the top by Sam Fink and rounded Cardone for the finish.
“It was a tight one tonight and we knew we had to be clinical when we got an opportunity and I’m immensely proud of all the guys tonight as the spirit and togetherness that they have shown all year has paid dividends,” said STLFC Head Coach Anthony Pulis. “It’s a massive three points but it’s not over—we have to keep going and get back to work and make sure we’re prepared for Phoenix next week.”