Louisville City FC's Luke Spencer scored twice to continue his good preseason to lead his side to a 4-2 exhibition victory against Memphis 901 FC on Wednesday. | File photo courtesy Em-Dash Photograhy / Louisville City FC
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Luke Spencer scored a pair of goals as defending USL Cup champion Louisville City FC took a 4-2 victory against fellow USL Championship side Memphis 901 FC on Wednesday afternoon on the campus of Vanderbilt University.
Lucky Mkosana and Napo Matsoso also found the net for LouCity in the second half, while Memphis got goals from Adam Najem and Junior Sandoval as it continued to prepare for its inaugural season in the league.
“It was great to have Luke get two goals today and I believe that is three for him so far,” Louisville City Head Coach John Hackworth said. “His runs off the ball today were very good and we needed to find him even more than we did actually.”
Spencer, who scored the game-winning goal in LouCity’s 2018 USL Cup victory, created and scored the opening goal against 901 FC as he was brought down in the penalty area midway through the first half. Spencer stepped up and converted from the spot.
Memphis hit back as Najem scored just past the half-hour mark, but Louisville quickly regained the lead a minute later as Niall McCabe set up Spencer for his second of the contest.
901 FC again got on level terms in the second half as Sandoval scored in the 65th minute, but once again LouCity was quick to respond as offseason arrival Mkosana knocked home a finish after good work by Sunny Jane two minutes later. Matsoso then wrapped up the scoring with two minutes to go as he provided the insurance goal.
“I want to say that the group in the second half did a better job of executing our game plan, so that’s great for all of them, but Napo getting on the board was big,” Hackworth said. “And Sunny's pass on Lucky's goal was great. We are a team and we root for each other's success. We were all excited to see how the guys played in the second half.”
Despite the result, Memphis Head Coach Tim Mulqueen believed there were good passages his side could work on as it builds towards its home opener against the Tampa Bay Rowdies on Saturday, March 9.
“Although I’m not pleased with the result, we had some really good moments of play that threatened the defending champions,” said Memphis Head Coach Tim Mulqueen. “I thought our organization and commitment to compete was outstanding. If we continue to work on the small details and eliminate the mistakes we made, we’ll have a very successful season.”