Photo courtesy Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC
PITTSBURGH – USL Championship Eastern Conference rivals Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC and Louisville City FC played to a 0-0 draw on Saturday afternoon at Highmark Stadium to wrap up their preseason schedules ahead of the opening weekend of the 2023 USL Championship season next week.
Both sides threatened to break the deadlock, with LouCity creating the first good chance in the 20th minute. Brian Ownby got to the end line for the visitors before delivering a cross to Oscar Jimenez, who forced a save from Hounds goalkeeper Jahmali Waite from the top of the penalty area. Four minutes later, Ownby chipped the goalkeeper in a one-on-one situation but saw the effort sail over the crossbar.
The Hounds had a similar opportunity in the 58th minute when Kenardo Forbes got in behind the LouCity defense for the hosts’ best chance of the day, only for the Jamaican’s shot to fly wide.
Albert Dikwa also sent an effort just wide as Pittsburgh produced a strong second half, while with 15 minutes to go Robbie Mertz sent in a cross that found new Hounds forward Tony Lopez, but his header flashed off target.
“I'm really happy with the performance overall from the group,” said LouCity Head Coach Danny Cruz. “This is a tough place to play, but we try to put the players in positions that are challenging for them here in preseason. I thought the group handled it really well. We created some good opportunities in the first half, and our defensive block was excellent.”
LouCity will open its 2023 regular season on the road as it visits Orange County SC at Championship Soccer Stadium next Saturday night. The Hounds will also hit the road for a rematch from last year’s postseason as they face Birmingham Legion FC at Protective Stadium.