After giving up an early goal in the first half, Orange County SC managed to bang the door down in the 90th minute to draw 1-1 vs. Phoenix Rising.
It was an even start in the first half for both sides. OCSC enjoyed early spells of possession and sustained spome attacks in the attacking third of the pitch.
The away side took the lead in the 11th minute as Solomon Asante put away a low cross by wide man Billy Forbes.
The host could have had a penalty as Oscar Sorto was taken down in the penalty area but the ref deemed there wasn’t enough contact.
Near halftime, OCSC could have equalized as forward Michael Seaton had a shot that rang the crossbar.
The home side enjoyed even more possession in the second half as Phoenix were content with sitting back and soaking up pressure.
After earning corner after corner towards the end of the match, it was substitute Aaron Crognale, a defender on-loan from Columbus Crew SC who hit a composed finish towards the roof of the net. The score would stay 1-1 at the final whistle.
What we learned? Continuity and chemistry will be an issue.
While it’s no secret, there is high turnover with USL teams. Most players sign 1-year deals and it’s extraordinary if a player signs for two. As a result, there is an inherent lack of chemistry and continuity in a team season to season.
On Saturday night 11 out of 14 players did not play for Orange County last season. While they held possession, through balls went astray, chances were few and far between, and a breakdown of communication was seen at times.
If Orange County want success, these players will need to get on the same page as soon as possible. If not, then they will be in for a long season.
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