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Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC Fall in Five Goal Game

By Cody Costra, 07/17/21, 3:30PM MDT

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Colorado Springs, CO (July 17, 2021) – The Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC lost 3-2 to San Antonio FC on Saturday afternoon.

San Antonio got on the board early as a turnover found Nathan with space in the box as he finished a powerful strike. The Switchbacks equalized in the 14th minute as Michee Ngalina dribbled into the right side of the penalty area before hitting a shot that was originally saved by Matt Cardone. The rebound fell to the foot of Hadji Barry who took a touch before scoring his league-leading 13th goal of the season. 

The visitors had an opportunity to equalize from the penalty spot after a shot hit the arm of Switchbacks defender Michael Edwards. PC put his penalty kick into the top left corner for San Antonio's second goal. The Switchbacks nearly battled back quickly as Ngalina got behind the back line to see his 1-v-1 shot saved and the his rebound shot while on the ground was put just wide of the left post.

An opportunity fell to the foot of Switchbacks midfielder, Beverly Makangila, from a cleared corner kick as Makangila hit a shot under the crossbar but it was saved out for a corner kick by Cardone. Just before halftime, San Antonio played a pass behind the Switchbacks defense as Sean Melvin came out to tip the ball away from the foot of Sam Gleadle. There was judged to be a foul as a second penalty kick of the game was awarded to San Antonio as Nathan scored his second goal of the game, this time from the spot.

The Switchbacks got a goal back as Edwards played a long pass from his own half to the top of the penalty area. Zach Zandi ran onto the end of the pass and chipped a looping ball over the head of the goalkeeper and into the back of the net for Zandi's first goal with the Switchbacks.

Deshane Beckford had an opportunity in the final minutes of the game to tie the game at three when he dribbled inside the left side of the penalty area and unleashed a shot headed towards the top right corner of the goal but Cardone made his eighth save of the game to preserve the 3-2 scoreline.

The Switchbacks are back at Weidner Field on July 23 for their first-ever meeting against Louisiville City FC with gates opening at 6pm for a 7pm kick off. The game is presented by FOX 21 News as the first fans in the gates will receive a free special edition signature trophy of Hadji Barry. Tickets are available HERE.


Post-Game Quotes

 
Brendan Burke - Head Coach
Overall thoughts on the game
"We were really poor in the first half. We didn’t do our jobs, we didn’t take balls out of the air on the back line, we didn’t support each other; just poor, and we put ourselves in a hole. Then in the second half we did most things right and we worked hard to dig ourselves out of it. We created more than enough chances to win the game going away, we just weren’t able to finish off some of those chances and that’s frustrating. It’s a bad feeling to know that it was in your hands and not perform in the first half."


On the fight in the team to create chances through the 90th minute:
"Yeah it's great. We have good energy in the locker room, good energy on the team. We're just getting some key players back, and we're looking forward to getting Triston back in a week or two. You saw Zandi's quality when he got back in, we've missed him for weeks, but the reality is we've lost two games back to back because of silly mistakes on our part, not because we can't carry the game or were not good enough to push the game, we certainly are. I haven’t seen the stats yet but I imagine we created probably fifteen good goal scoring chances today between the two halves, we just weren’t sharp enough defensively - and that’s not just on the back four that’s in the midfield as well, we were losing second balls and duels, just stuff we can’t do anywhere but certainly not at home."


Jimmy Ockford:
On the team's overall performance:
"Energy levels weren’t there from the start and we kind of fell behind at the beginning of the match, so that one's on us in the beginning. But I think we did well coming out of the second half, bringing a bit more. We knew it was going to be a physical game and we matched that, so it was a tough one. But it's unfortunate, an all around frustrating day.


 On moving forward to the next game:
"We'll go over some clips of this game, try to clean up some stuff. Get some different ideas, clean up some of the ideas that we already have. We'll just try to forget about it and move onto the next match. All you can do really is go into training on Monday with eyes on the next one."


Zach Zandi:
On returning to the field and getting his first goal with the Switchbacks:
"I'm really happy to be back out there, I missed I think six games. It wasn’t a long time span but it felt like a long time so I'm just happy to be out.. [The goal] felt really nice, really nice. I wish I could have done more to help the team, but I'm just really happy to get that first goal for me. Hopefully it can be more to come, but I'm happy with how I did, but you know, I have to get my fitness up, have to be able to help the team a little bit more, to get the W."


On adapting for Louisville:
"Louisville is one of the best teams in the USL, it should be an amazing game. I think everyone is looking forward to that game. We need to go in and we have to prepare properly, be calm, and have a positive mindset. The past couple games we've let go, so it's about having a positive mindset and pushing through to get that win."

Game Statistics

  • Man of the Match// Zach Zandi
  • Scoring Summary// COS: Barry (14'), Zandi (73') | SA: Nathan (7'), Giro (24' - PK), Nathan (43' - PK)
  • Saves// COS: Melvin (2) | SA: Cardone (8)
  • Discipline// COS: YC: Edwards (23'), Mayaka (41'), Ockford (57') | SA: YC: Giro (36'), Doyle (63'), Hopeau (88'), Cardone (90+1'), Gleadle (90+4'), Cuello (90+7')