Swope Park Rangers showed some very good qualities despite what was a disappointing result to draw 1-1 against Atlanta United 2.
Paulo Nagamura used two Sporting KC loanees for all 90 minutes, Gedion Zelalem and Graham Smith (who captained SPR today).
Swope Park Rangers opened the scoring just two minutes in after a mess in Atlanta United 2’s defense, which Felipe Hernandez made no mistake with his interception-pass to Jerome Ngom Mbekeli, who got the ball poke away from him until it fell nicely to Hernandez, who calmly slotted last the keeper for his fourth goal this season. SPR controlled the rest of the half, but were unable to score on the seven other shots in the opening 45 minutes.
In the second half, Atlanta United 2 came out the stronger of the two sides, leveling things at 1-1 after SPR failed to clear a corner and it fell to Laurence Wyke, who clinically out it past an outstretched Pulskamp.
It was a result that was about fair, as the Rangers were clearly the better side in the opening half, but Atlanta were the better side in the second half.
Swope Park Rangers have certainly showed some improvement as the season has grown. SPR went out and got an early lead, gave it up, but remained very much in the game and nearly found a winner.
The Rangers remain in 17th place on 6 points in the Eastern Conference of the USL, while Atlanta United 2 sit 11th with a 3-3-5 record.
Swope Park Rangers return to action this Wednesday, May 22, at 7:00 PM CT as they await Memphis 901 FC, with just three points separating the two teams so far.