KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Hadji Barry and Michee Ngalina led Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC to a 4-0 victory against Sporting Kansas City II on Friday night at Children’s Mercy Park as Head Coach Brendan Burke notched his first win at the helm of the club.
The Switchbacks got out to an ideal start in just the seventh minute as Jimmy Ockford first intercepted a pass and then after receiving a return pass played Ngalina in down the right flank. Ngalina delivered a low cross through the six-yard area that found Austin Dewing at the back post for a tap-in finish for his first goal in the professional ranks.
Ngalina almost added to the lead for Colorado Springs in the 20th minute as a well-executed counterattack saw Barry slide the Congolese forward through, but SKC II goalkeeper Kendall McIntosh denied him as he closed quickly coming off his line. The Switchbacks added their second nine minutes later, however, as Barry was brought down in the penalty area by McIntosh. The Guinean took the penalty kick himself and shot low to the left corner to double the lead.
Colorado Springs was awarded another penalty kick before halftime as SKC II defender Petar Cuic handled in the penalty area. Ngalina’s initial effort from the spot was saved by McIntosh, but the SKC II goalkeeper was ruled to have left his line early, which gave Ngalina a second chance that he put away into the left corner of the net. Sporting’s night quickly got worse as defender Matt Constant was sent off after a challenge on Barry before halftime, giving the hosts an even bigger hill to climb.
Barry struck again against his former club in the 64th minute as Ngalina picked up possession in space on the left before driving toward the top of the penalty area and passing to Barry. The Guinean forward’s first touch pulled him away from his defender and set up a left-footed shot into the bottom-right corner of the net for his second of the night.
Barry then narrowly missed out on a hat trick with 16 minutes to go as he fired a curling shot from 20 yards just over the top-right corner of the net, and soon after second-half substitute Dantouma Toure clipped the crossbar with a shot in his debut for the side. SKC II almost pulled back a goal with nine minutes to go as a corner kick from the left fell to Enoch Mushagalusa, but his finish went wide of the right post, and the Switchbacks saw out the contest to claim a comfortable victory.
USLChampionship.com Man of the Match
Michee Ngalina, Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC – Ngalina had one goal and two assists, recorded eight key passes overall and three shots on target while completing 3 of 3 dribbles on the night.
COS - Austin Dewing (Michee Ngalina) 7’
COS - Hadji Barry (Penalty Kick) 29’
COS - Michee Ngalina (Penalty Kick) 36’
COS - Hadji Barry (Michee Ngalina) 64’