The New York Red Bulls II continued their seven match unbeaten streak, defeating Saint Louis FC at MSU Soccer Park Friday night.
Following Marcus Epps’ loan to Memphis 901 FC earlier in the day, Sebastian Elney started on the right wing for NYRBII. The move proved critical, and Elney scored a brace. Evan Louro kept STLFC at bay, and NYRBII rolled to a 2-0 victory.
STLFC entered the match on the back of a 3-0 win over Bethlehem Steel FC, their first win since April. The visitors kept the match tight, keeping numbers behind the ball, and frustrating NYRBII through physicality at times.
Sebastian Elney made the breakthrough in the 34th minute. A quick exchange at the top of the box between Tom Barlow and Jared Stroud drew STLFC’s defense slightly out of position. Elney made a direct run into the box, and Stroud played a well-weighted ball into his path. Elney took a touch, then lashed a shot into the near post, finding the back of the net.
STLFC created a few chances, but failed to finish in the first half. Their best chance came during a breakaway. Kadeem Dacres beat the NYRBII backline, but Evan Louro stood tall and denied the attacker, making a kick save.
The second half proved frustrating for STLFC. They created chances, but again struggled playing the final ball. NYRBII hung in, and eventually added the final dagger in the 89th minute. Oscar Umar fouled Vincent Bezecourt on the break as the last defender and received a red card. Bezecourt struck the resulting free kick well, forcing a save from Tomás Gómez. The save came off the crossbar, struck Gómez’s legs, and rolled in front of the net. Elney ran in and put the loose ball into the net.
The win improves NYRBII to 13-4-5 and pushes NYRBII temporarily into first place. Next up, NYRBII head to Connecticut to take on Hartford Athletic.