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Riverhounds Postgame: Interviews with Bob Lilley, Robbie Mertz and Jahmali Waite plus Twitter reaction

File photo courtesy Steel Army Twitter

Riverhounds SC Post Match Coverage on Pittsburgh Soccer Now is presented by The Bulldog Pub


For the first time since 2001, the Pittsburgh Riverhounds pulled off a win against a Major League Soccer club on home turf, as they defeated Columbus Crew, 1-0, on Wednesday night before an overflow sellout crowd of 6,107 fans.

With the win, the Hounds advance to the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Quarterfinal Round, where they’ll take on FC Cincinnati on either June 6 or June 7.

FINAL: Riverhounds SC 1, Columbus Crew SC 0 (US Open Cup Round of 16)

After the match, Riverhounds SC Head Coach Bob Lilley, midfielder Robbie Mertz and Goalkeeper Jahmali Waite plus Columbus’ Head Coach Wilfried Nancy met with the media. See the quotes and interview clips below.

In addition, PSN’s John Krysinsky and Mark Goodman, shared their reaction.

#PITvCLB Post Match Interviews:

Bob Lilley on the impact of winning before a home crowd against an MLS opponent

“It’s important for the club. We’ve been building and growing. These nights and opportunities to pack the house and have an MLS team here introduce the game to more people.”

“I don’t think we had a great performance. But a great result for the club. We reminded our guys, they were going to have to work hard defensively. They’ll have to compete. Look to play positive,” Lilley added.

Lilley on the importance of sellout crowd and fan support

“The fans played a big part tonight,” Lilley said. “

The game got stretched and wide open, and we probably needed to get ahold of the ball a little more. I think the fans pulled us through. It maybe wasn’t pretty at the end, but there was energy in the building. Our guys had something to hold onto.”

Robbie Mertz on the Hounds’ approach in this match and reaction to the atmosphere at Highmark Stadium 

“We needed to stay steady. Don’t get too high. Don’t get too low. Let’s go about our business. Yet, that goes by the wayside when you walk out, and you see that environment. After the game you see how joyful everyone is.”

Robbie Mertz on the match-up vs Columbus and finding a way to get the result  

“We knew coming into game they were possession oriented team. We weren’t under illusion it would be different. We want to avoid being under a ton of pressure, but we did what we had to do.”

Goalkeeper Jahmali Waite on withstanding Columbus’ possession and pressure late in the match 

“That’s something we work on in practice every day,” Waite said. “Bob is really big on goalkeepers being aggressive and coming off the line. That helps a team a lot. You get the ball in your hands, the play is over, so I try my best to be aggressive off my line to help the team.”


Wilfried Nancy on his team’s performance and why they came up short

“I was expecting more, because we know this is a physical team,” Nancy said.

“But they know that and they faced already this kind of team. We were late. We were (winning the) first ball, but the second ball no. After that, when we had the ball, we didn’t connect the way we usually do. Yes, the environment. Yes, we can find a lot of excuses with the turf and so on, but at the end of the day, this is for both teams. We were not able to be better on that. That’s why we didn’t score at least one goal.”


#PITvCLB Twitter Reaction 


John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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