CORPUS CHRISTI – June 23
After a first half of missed opportunities, Corpus Christi FC cashed in during the final 45 minutes to earn a 3-0 win over Houston FC in Premier Development League play at Dugan Stadium Friday.
The win came in the first of five consecutive home matches over the final six games of the regular season.
The Sharks (4-4-1, 13 points) needed a result Friday to keep their hopes of a playoff berth in the Mid South Division alive. Corpus Christi FC scored three times in the final 30 minutes of the match to top Houston FC 3-0 at Dugan Stadium on Friday.
Nenad Markovic, who came on as a sub in the second half, scored on a rebound in the 62nd minute to break the seal.
“It was a tough game in the fact that we couldn’t put the ball in, myself, in the first half — I should have had two goals,” Patricio Botello said. “I couldn’t put it in and it was one of those games where you think ‘It is not my day.’ Nenad came in in the second half, put a goal in and completely changed the game.”
The match opened in the final 10 minutes of play and CCFC dodged a few Houston FC opportunities before capitalizing twice in stoppage play on goals from Botello (90+1) and local product Karlo Lopez (90+2).
CCFC also produced its first clean sheet of the season as the home side dominated possession.
“This was huge,” CCFC coach Sebastian Giraldo said. “Defense is what we have been working on. We had to fix a problem we had. We can score on anybody but we’ve taken a couple of goals in transition that we weren’t happy with. Tonight we fixed it. Above anything else the guys deserve credit.
“The attitude to run for 90 minutes, track back and do your work and tackle guys. I think it was all there tonight.”
CCFC has a quick turnaround, hosting Brazos Valley Cavalry F.C. on Sunday June 24,2018 at Dugan Stadium in the second of three instances this season where the Sharks play two matches in three days.
“We had to win tonight,” Giraldo said. “That was the focus in practice. We had to get a result. Our guys were relentless. Last time we played (Houston FC), I think we made a mistake of pulling out of the attack and not going at them.
“You will see a very heavy rotation in (the) roster. We kept four guys off (Friday) that were in the 18 consistently for us. Those guys will be in the game on Sunday. We are very focused right now.”
Sunday’s match will also be Military and first responders night at Dugan Stadium. The game will benefit the Christian Fellowship Veterans Administration and tickets for military personnel and first responders will be $2.
Culled from Quinton Martinez, Corpus Christi Caller Times