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Pulse of Pittsburgh Soccer: Riverhounds look to get on right track; Tessa Dellarose called up to US WYNT U-20 squad;

Photo courtesy Pitt Athletics

The Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC did not play this past weekend, and this also provided a relatively quiet past week on the Pittsburgh soccer front though the college teams have been keeping busy with spring schedules and one young player from the region, Tessa Dellarose, has been called up to National team squad.

This week that changes a bit as the Hounds are back in action at Highmark Stadium, while we’ll see a spring season friendly renewal of ‘Cross-Tahn Derby’ between Robert Morris and Duquesne’s men’s squads plus Pitt men and women’s squads have matches too.

Riverhounds Looking to Get on the Right Track

As the page turns to April, the Hounds are still looking to pick up their first points and their first win of the season.  It’s been a very slow start for a franchise that has not failed to reach the postseason in each of the last six seasons under the direction of Head Coach Bob Lilley.

While there are some fans out there who have expressed their concerns and disgust, the overall consensus is that most Pittsburgh soccer fans have faith that the Hounds, with a core group that includes 11 returnees from last season’s Players Shield winning squad, will turn things around.

The team has been going about its business to prepare for the next match.

The Hounds return to action on Saturday night, facing another Eastern Conference rival, Tampa Bay Rowdies, at Highmark Stadium.

“With the season being long, any off week is a good thing,” Luke Biasi said.

“It will be good for us to work on what moving parts we need to fix. If we start to put together more consistent performances, we’ll get on the right track.”

The first meeting of the two teams that finished 1st and 2nd in the Eastern Conference a season ago, will mark the Hounds’ and Highmark Stadium debut on CBS Sports Golazo Network.

Look for more to come from PSN, as we connect with Bob Lilley and a few players this week ahead of their match vs Tampa Bay.

Pitt Men Earn Spring Season Win vs ACC Rival Virginia

In other Pittsburgh soccer happenings, the college teams continue with spring seasons, as PSN’s Dom Campbell was at Ambrose Urbanic Field on Saturday, as Pitt’s men’s squad came away with a 1-0 win vs ACC foe, Virginia.

Next up for the Panthers, they’ll take on Wake Forest over at Highmark Stadium on Saturday, at 1 p.m.

And speaking of Pitt men’s soccer — former Panthers continue to excel in the pro ranks, notably in the past few weeks, Valentin Noel has been showing his scoring prowess since being added to the Las Vegas Lights’ roster.

Noel scored his second goal of the season and added an assist in the Lights’ 3-0 victory on Saturday.

On the other side, in the NWSL, former Pitt standout Amanda West made her debut on March 23, then her first start a week later, on Saturday night.

Also, Brownsville’s Tessa Dellarose, a sophomore at University of North Carolina who’s come out of Riverhounds Development Academy and once played at Brownsville High School, has been selected for USWNT’s U-20 roster ahead of matches vs Germany and Canada.

While Steel City FC were eliminated in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, that tournament moves on to the second round this week, starting with matches on Tuesday.  If anything, we now get a little closer to seeing teams that the Riverhounds’ might face when they enter the fray in the National Tournament’s Round of 32.

Pittsburgh Soccer Schedule (April 2-6)

Friday, April 5                 Robert Morris (Men) vs Duquesne (Men)   6 p.m.    Rooney Field

Saturday, April 6             Pitt (Men) vs Wake Forest   1 p.m.     Highmark Stadium

Pitt (Women) vs Lafayette   2 p.m.    PA Classics

 Riverhounds vs Tampa Bay       7 p.m.      Highmark Stadium

 

 

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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