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Pittsburgh Riverhounds

FINAL: Riverhounds SC 2, Charleston Battery 0

Photo courtesy Ed Thompson
USL Championship — Old Guard Shield

FINAL: Riverhounds 2, Charleston 0

Match statistics: USL Championship Match Center

Match Summary

The Pittsburgh Riverhounds didn’t waste any time, as Junior Etou scored the earliest goal in club history, then Tola Showunmi added a late goal to secure a 2-0 victory against Charleston Battery on Saturday night at Highmark Stadium.

With the win, their fifth straight in league play, the Hounds (7-2-5, 26 points) jumped the Battery (7-4-4, 25 points) in the USL Championship’s Eastern Conference standings, and into first place.

“Good teams find ways to win. We weren’t our best, but we jumped out of them early, and that helped,” Riverhounds Head Coach Bob Lilley said after the match.

“It’s a gutty performance. It’s an important one. There was some physical fatigue. Some emotional fatigue. Charleston was super aggressive. They’re not an easy team to play against.”

The Hounds scored just 21 seconds into the match, orchestrated together a few quick passes following the opening touch, which ended with a clinical Junior Etou finish in the box on the end of yet another Kenardo Forbes assist.

The Hounds only generated one more shot for the remainder of the half, but settled into a compact defensive shape, which conceded 65 percent possession to the Battery, and four shots, with just one on frame.

Goalkeeper Jahmali Waite came up with a terrific stop to keep the Hounds lead intact in the 17th minute.

“I don’t think we played particularly well in the first half, after we scored,” Lilley said.

“We struggled to create any promising attacks. It felt like we were defending for long stretches. For me, you have to, after you score an early goal. you have to be able to show you can play. You can hold onto the ball.”

had to come up with a couple saves in the second half, as Charleston continued to hold the edge and brought more pressure around the edge of the box.

Once again, in locking down its third straight league match with a clean sheet, all with Waite in goal, the Hounds, in a 5-4-1 formation, defended well in the box when facing an assault of Battery crosses, many aimed to hit its dangerous target man Augustine Williams.

As the match entered the late stages, the Hounds started to knock the ball around a bit more, and also found room on the counter attack.

In the 83rd minute, Hounds midfielder Robbie Mertz took possession behind midfield line, then found Luke Biasi on the left flank.  The second-year defender/winger moved forward, then played a ball into space for Showunmi, who took a touch in stride then made a few nifty moves to get around goalkeeper Trey Muse, who came off his line.  Showumni then slotted his goal scoring chance into the back of the net with his right foot in front of the Paul Child Stand, putting a stamp on the Hounds fifth straight win in league play.

The Hounds will go back on the road next Saturday, when they face Oakland Roots, with a 10 p.m. (ET) kickoff.

Match Updates  

Look for pregame and match updates including starting lineups and highlights posted below.


Hounds pick up the three points, and now move past Charleston for the top spot in the Eastern Conference standings.


Tola Showunmi breaks forward, then makes a few nifty moves around GK Trey Muse, after a clever feed from Luke Biasi.

That two matches in a row the Lanky Londoner has scored.

74′ — Hounds subs:

  • IN: Robbie Mertz, Tola Showunmi
  • OUT: K. Forbes, E. Kizza

61′ — Kizza gets forward into space, then unleashes a shot from 24 yards that forces Charleston keeper Trey Muse to go down to his right for save.

60′ — Most we’ve seen the Hounds knock it around in the final third — coming in past few sequences. Junior Etou with a nice cross from the left side that can’t quite connect with Kizza.

56′ — Yellow Card — Riverhounds – Pat Hogan

48′ — Augustine Williams beats Arturo Ordonez to cross in box, but soft header is easily handled by Jahmali Waite.



Ho-hum rest of the first half.  Hounds unable to generate much in the final third, while their compact shape limited a Charleston side that owned 60/40 possession edge and 4-2 shots advantage.

32′ – With lead, Hounds staying compact in 5-4-1, but lots of movement and rotation between the midfielders: Forbes, Griffin, Zwetsloot and Etou.

22′ – Langston Blackstock picks up the first yellow card of the game. He gives a look to the referee to indicate it’s his first foul, but the card was for the situation rather than any malice.

16′ – Charleston with few free kick chances and a corner in past few mins The latest FK — Arturo Rodriguez from 24 yards — puts it on target inside near post but Hounds GK Jahmali Waite is there to deny

14′ — Nate Dossantos is injured — and comes off the field, but quickly comes back on.


Junior Etou scores 24 seconds into the match!  Feed comes from Kenardo Forbes, his fifth assist on the season.

Hounds Starters…

26 Waite GK
13 Biasi DF
7 Blackstock DF
6 Dossantos DF
5 Ordoñez DF
3 Hogan DF
11 Forbes (C) MF
20 Zwetsloot MF
2 Griffin MF
8 Etou MF
19 Kizza FW

Charleston starters…

25 Muse GK
14 Dodson DF
28 Wynne DF
20 Paterson (C) DF
5 Archer DF
4 Allan MF
69 Avila MF
19 Crawford MF
12 Rodriguez MF
13 Markanich MF
9 Williams FW


Match Preview / PSN Hounds Coverage 

Pittsburgh Riverhounds-Charleston Battery two decades ‘Old Guard’ rivalry heats up with top of the table clash


Riverhounds’ Open Cup run ends with 3-1 loss at MLS leader FC Cincinnati



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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Glory on the Grass

Riverhounds MF Kenardo Forbes

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