Photo courtesy of Richmond Kickers
RICHMOND, Va. – Three quality strikes from Sunny Jane, Oliver and Yudai Imura paved the way for the Richmond Kickers to record a 3-1 win against the Charleston Battery at City Stadium on Saturday evening. The Battery took an early lead via a goal from Heviel Cordoves in the second minute of action, but the Kickers would take the lead before the break. In the 17th minute, Jane controlled a cross from the left wing by Braedon Troyer with his chest before hitting a left-footed laser by Battery goalkeeper Odisnel Cooper. Jane, who caused problems all night for Charleston, was at it again 19 minutes later, driving down the middle of the field before feeding Oliver, who hit a perfectly-placed ball in. Yudai Imura would seal the win with a beautiful free kick in second-half stoppage time. With the result, the Kickers improve to 5-12-8 overall and 5-6-3 at home this campaign, while the Battery fall to 11-6-8 this year.
2' – CHS – Heviel Cordoves (Maikel Chang)
17' – RIC – Sunny Jane (Braedon Troyer)
36' – RIC – Oliver (Sunny Jane)
90+3' – RIC – Yudai Imura
Three Things That Matter:
1. The Kickers have struggled more often than not during the 2017 USL regular season, but they turned in one of their better overall performances against a talented Battery team on Saturday. With the victory, Richmond has now won back-to-back games for the first time this regular season, and many players made it happen. Great goals from Jane, Oliver and Imura, as well as important saves from goalkeeper Travis Worra, keep the club's slim hopes of a late playoff push alive.
2. The Battery snapped a seven-game winless run with a win against the Rochester Rhinos last week, but the club was unable to continue its winning ways as it looks to clinch a home game in the first round of the USL Cup Playoffs. The club entered the weekend third in the Eastern Conference with 41 points. Seven games remain on the team's schedule, with four being played away from MUSC Health Stadium.
3. Travis Worra appears to be Richmond's lucky talisman, as the club is undefeated all three games he has started in goal this campaign. This year, Worra has made 10 saves for the Kickers, while posting one clean sheet. The netminder made three stops against the Battery on Saturday, none more important than his denial of Ataulla Guerra, who was played in on goal by teammate Maikel Chang for a one-v-one scoring opportunity in the 71st minute.
USLSoccer.com Man of the Match:
Sunny Jane, Richmond Kickers – Jane shined all evening for the Kickers, scoring one goal while also recording the assist on the game-winning goal.
Richmond Kickers at Charlotte Independence – Sept. 2, 7 p.m. ET, Sportsplex at Matthews
Charleston Battery at Louisville City FC – Sept. 2, 5 p.m. ET, Louisville Slugger Field