Pittsburgh Riverhounds (0-1-1, 1 points) vs Orlando City B (0-3-1, 1 points)
RIVERHOUNDS GAMEDAY PREVIEW LINK
Friday, April 22 – 7 p.m.
Live Broadcast / Feed – ESPN3, http://www.Riverhounds.com
WHAT’S AT STAKE / KEY STORYLINES
For the Hounds, after an exciting second game of the season at Toronto, where they rallied with a late goal in added time to draw TFCII, they return home seeking three points that could boost them out of the bottom part of the USL’s Eastern Conference Standings.
Both teams are without a win in six combined games.
The Riverhounds played Sunday’s game at Toronto without a number of key players including team captain Kevin Kerr, starting attacking midfielder Lebo Moloto and Sergio Campbell. Look for all three to see playing time tonight.
Hounds Head Coach Mark Steffens will have options for his starting eleven. Hounds had some impressive performances by a few players on Sunday, including Romeo Parkes and Conor Branson, who filled in for Campbell at center back — and his second half subs Karsten Smith, Caleb Posterwait and Isaiah Schafer.
Orlando City returns to USL as “B” team of its senior team which made the jump to MLS after winning two USL titles. They are clearly a young squad with a mix of USL vets thrown in here and there.
ABOUT ORLANDO CITY B
This will be OCB’s first of five games in less than two weeks, as they face the Harrisburg City Islanders on the road on Monday, April 25, and then return home to host FC Montreal on Sunday, May 1, FC Cincinnati on Wednesday, May 4 and Bethlehem Steel FC on Saturday, May 7.
The Lions had to play two men down and last week in Melbourne, limiting Harrisburg to a single goal in a 1-0 loss..
This week’s fixture marks the second road match for the Lions this season. The last time OCB played away, City opened scoring with an early clinical finish from striker Michael Cox assisted by Richie Laryea against Eastern Conference leader, Louisville FC.
Despite early momentum, OCB was unable to fend off Louisville City’s attack indefinitely resulting in OCB’s first road loss.
In an effort to bring pro soccer and extend its fan support throughout Central Floriday, OCB play their home games about an hour away — on Florida’s Space Coast — in Melbourne, Florida. The Hounds will have their return match with Lions on Labor Day weekend.
PRE-GAME / EARTH DAY FESTIVITIES / CONSTRUCTION ALERT
There will be a wide array of festivities and promotions to fans for their Earth Day tilt.
Along with being the first USL game everon ESPN3, the Hounds will host a Happy Hour for fans from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and offer discounted tickets two ways.
Three-dollar discounts will be handed out to fans that ride their bikes to the match, while a 25 percent discount will be applied with the donation of a vegetable or fruit seed packet benefiting the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.
The Pub will be holding Happy Hour; all fans are welcome to attend, as select appetizers and drinks will be offered at half price from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Also of mention, the club asks fans hoping to attend the game to take note of planned construction in Station Square from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Station Square Drive, from the Grand Concourse to the Sheraton Pittsburgh Hotel at Station Square will be closed due to the construction projects underway in the area.
For a complete look at the Riverhounds — you can read my Riverhounds 3-part Season Preview here on Pittsburgh Soccer Report.