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Louisville City 1:1 Harrisburg City Islanders

James O’Connor called the first half and second half showing a “Jekyll and Hyde” performance. The same could be said for this team’s entire season.

Once again, Louisville City comes away with only a point at home, after yet another frustrating draw against Harrisburg City, 1-1.  The side fell behind in the first half, before Paolo DelPiccolo scored his first goal for Louisville City to salvage a point. Despite having eighteen shots on the night, the home side managed to net only once, a trend that is becoming all too familiar and is leaving fans worried.

Louisville City controlled possession early and had a great buildup of play in the second minute, but the resulting shot from the top of the box was blocked out of play. In the tenth minute, Harrisburg City nearly took the lead, as a shot beat Ranjitsingh and rattled off the bar, and the follow-up shot required a great save from the LCFC keeper to prevent a goal.
As has been the case often in the past month or so, the boys in purple repeatedly built play up quite well, only to see the final touch go begging. Crosses directly to the keeper, heavy touches in the area, and an inability to find Cameron Lancaster in a position where he could get the ball facing goal continued to be a concern for the home team. In fact, Harrisburg outshot LCFC 4-1 in the first twenty minutes.
Then in the 21st minute, Harrisburg made LCFC pay for not taking their chances. Some poor defending allowed the Islanders to maintain possession after a bad clearance, and Jose Barril made them pay, lashing a shot from about twenty yards out and curling it past Greg into the corner to make it 1-0. The players looked absolutely dejected as they headed back to the center spot, but nobody was as disgusted as O’Connor on the sidelines, who threw his hands in the air and simply walked away.
Nothing seemed to chage after the goal.  LCFC continued to be stuck in the midfield, unable to get things going in the final third. Niall McCabe, who was terrific earlier in the season as a wide player, struggled to link up with Lancaster playing as a trequartista. Meanwhile, Harrisburg continued to put pressure on, as the defense was often left scrambling to cover gaps, as the absence of Sean Reynolds was obvious.
Louisville City finally got a great chance in the 34th minute, as McCabe was taken down just outside the top of the area. However, the curling effort from DelPiccolo was just hit just over the bar.
Late in the half, LCFC began to get some chances, First, in the 40th minute, Ben Newnam sent in a cross that went just inches over the head of Lancaster. Three minutes later, Lancaster made a great turn on a pass and chipped a shot just wide of the bar. There were shouts for a penalty as his shirt was being pulled on the turn, and that caused him to slip on the turf as he took the shot. However, the referee was having none of it. A minute later, Aodhan Quinn turned and fired a shot from the top of the area, and it hit the post behind the goal. In stoppage time, a great ball into the box was dummied by DelPiccolo, and it fooled all of his teammates. McCabe got the ball at the top of the area and his shot was somehow just kept out by the diving Keasel Broome. The half would end 0-0.
The second half would continue to see LCFC build up the play and see nothing as a result. Magnus Rasmussen and Kadeem Dacres would enter the match early in the half, and LCFC would eventually make inroads, drawing a free kick from about 30 yards out in the 56th minute. The shot by Lancaster would get deflected by the wall and evade the keeper, ringing off of the bar. The rebound fell to DelPiccolo, who punched it home from close range to tie the score at 1-1. For PDP, it was his first goal as a Louisville City player.
In the 70th minute, Chandler Hoffman replaced Lancaster, and Guy Abend replaced DelPiccolo, as they pushed for the winner. City began to get a few chances, but as had happened so many times before, the final ball was just not there. City continued to push, and nearly got the breakthrough in the 85th minute, but the cross from the edge of the six yard area was somehow kept from reaching any player in front of goal.
City got one last chance in stoppage time, as Kadeem was taken down outside the area. However, Quinn’s free kick from the right wing went over everyone’s head and well wide of the goal. Then, Dacres was taken down in the area a minute later, with no penalty given on what was a very iffy challenge. The referee waved off the claims, and then blew the whistle on an yet another disappointing performance by the home side.
Louisville City have a quick turnaround, as they host Rochester on Saturday night.