PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Saint Louis FC came back to draw 2-2 against Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC at Highmark Stadium in Match 9 of the USL Championship regular season.
Pittsburgh opened the scoring early as Ropapa Mensah bundled home the ball on the goal line following a deflected cross in the 16th minute before doubling their advantage through a tidy finish from Robbie Mertz in the 40th minute. Saint Louis FC would get a goal back in first half stoppage time from Kyle Greig before Wal Fall stepped up to bury a free kick in the 57th minute to claim the draw and earn a crucial point on the road. The result sees Saint Louis FC move to 4-3-2 with 14 points in Group E while Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC is 5-3-1 with 16 points in Group F.
The first half saw Saint Louis FC dominate possession and nearly open the scoring in the 10th minute as Mour Samb crossed the ball to the back post following a corner routine but Sam Fink could not get a touch at the back post. Pittsburgh played aggressively on the counter and would break the deadlock in the 16th minute as Steevan Dos Santos crossed the ball hard and low to take a deflection and bounce on the goal line for Mensah to finish. Pittsburgh would score another in the 40th minute as the ball fell kindly to Mertz following a tackle for him to turn and slot past STLFC goalkeeper Kyle Morton. Saint Louis FC would then get a lifeline in first half stoppage time as Greig controlled a knockdown from Russell Cicerone to fire at Riverhounds goalkeeper Tomas Gomez who made the initial save but Greig would finish the rebound to make it 2-1 at the break.
The second half started after a two-and-a-half hour severe weather delay but Saint Louis FC was able to maintain the momentum from before the break to get back into the game. They would equalize in the 57th minute as Fall stepped up to curl a free kick from the edge of the penalty area over the defensive wall and inside the near post for his first goal of the season. Pittsburgh would respond with a great chance in the 72nd minute as Kenardo Forbes hit a close-range effort following a deflected shot but Morton was there to make the save. Cicerone would then have a golden chance to win the game in the 78th minute as Paris Gee found him at the back post with a cross but his left-footed shot crashed off the crossbar and neither side could find a winner as they finished level.
“I was happy with the determination to come back from two goals down, but I thought we could have prevented both of their goals with better decisions,” said STLFC Head Coach Steve Trittschuh. “We need to take the energy and our play from the second half and play 90 minutes that way. The games will not get any easier, so we need to be ready to play from the start.”