Here at The Blue Testament our Swope Park Rangers coverage has dipped a bit since our lead SPR writer went off to university to start his collegiate soccer career. With that in mind, let’s catch up quickly on the last four games.
SPR Break Near Two Month Winless Streak
With the help of four Sporting Kansas City players, the Rangers pulled out a 1-0 win on Saturday over 6th place North Carolina FC. Tyler Freeman, Wan Kuzain, Felipe Hernandez and Jaylin Lindsey all started in the 1-0 victory but it was former SKC Academy striker Wilson Harris who scored the game winner on an assist from Lindsey. The lineup also featured two more SKC Academy players in Kaveh Rad and Tucker Lepley. Lepley has also featured in several consecutive matches and he’s still just 17.
Below are the full highlights of the game.
Rangers Draw with Charleston Battery
This past Wednesday the Rangers made progress towards righting what has been an awful season. SPR was able to pull out a nil-nil draw to break a seven match losing streak and to also earn their first shutout since June 8th.
This game features the same four Sporting KC members plus goalkeeper Eric Dick who was finally able to make an appearance instead of just sitting on the bench behind Tim Melia. And Dick, despite a few sketchy plays with his feet, came up with a handful of great saves to maintain the shutout.
SPR Lose 4-2 in Memphis After an Early Lead
The Rangers were up 1-0 on a Wilson Harris penalty kick, but it was mostly downhill from there. Two quick goals before the half led to a Memphis 901 FC lead. Then Ze Pedro found an equalizer before Memphis found the back of the net two more times (both Brandon Davis goals) to run away with the home victory. Swope lacked a Sporting KC presence as players like Hernandez and Kuzain where needed to fill out the 18 in Portland during the international break.
Swope Lose 0-2 Against Bethlehem Steel
The Philadelphia Union’s USL team hosted the Rangers and dominated to a 2-0 win despite Sporting KC loaning down Lindsey, Freeman and Kuzain (and Hernandez featured, though he didn’t have his first team contract yet at this point). The Steel did pick up a late red card, but it wasn’t enough for the Rangers to get anything going.
Swope Park are back in action on Saturday the 21st on the road against the Charlotte Independence. There are just seven games left in the 2019 USL Championship season for the Rangers who have only won four games through the first 27 tries (4-16-7).