Tristan Trager’s goal earns Battery point in 1-1 draw at Indy
INDIANAPOLIS – The Charleston Battery drew 1-1 on the road against Indy Eleven at IUPUI Michael A. Carroll Stadium on Wednesday. After a scoreless first half, a penalty spot conversion from Indy and an equalizer by Tristan Trager in the second half saw the points shared in the midweek duel.
With a relatively quiet start to the match, Fidel Barajas uncorked the first shot of the night in the 8th minute, which rocked off the crossbar following a robust charge into the final third by Arturo Rodriguez.
Indy’s first real chance came in the 26th minute when Sebastian Guenzatti took a shot from inside the box that was blocked by Leland Archer.
Goalkeeper Trey Muse came up big in the 35th minute to make his lone save of the first half, denying Aodhan Quinn from inside the six-yard box with a kick-save.
Charleston and Indy went into halftime scoreless, but the Battery dominated possession, retaining just under 60% in the first half.
The opening goal of the night came in the 61st minute when Quinn converted from the penalty spot. The penalty was awarded after a foul was drawn in the box by Douglas Martinez following light contact with Deklan Wynne.
Charleston remained resolute in searching for an equalizer after going down 1-0 after the spot conversion.
Tristan Trager, less than 10 minutes removed from entering the match, tied the game in the 77th minute after beating both Indy’s goalkeeper and a defender for an easy tap-in on goal. Emilio Ycaza played a long ball over the top to Trager for the assist and the forward capitalized on Indy’s apparent miscommunication, Trager then strolled towards the net for one of the easiest goals of the season.
Trager’s goal was his second of the season, his first in league play, and Ycaza’s assist was his first of 2023.
The Battery pushed forward for a go-ahead goal, with Rogriguez, Augi Williams and substitute Beto Avila leading much of the charge up top.
Indy were reduced to 10 men when Avila’s pressure paid off and drew a yellow card against Robby Dambrot at the edge of the box, his second of the night to earn him an early dismissal. Rodriguez fired the ensuing free kick to the top of the goal but it was saved by Yannik Oettl.
Charleston and Indy would settle for a point each in the 1-1 draw. The Battery out possessed Indy 58% to 42%, noteworthy as Indy entered the match leading the league in average possession.
The Battery have now won 10 points from losing positions in the USL Championship this season, no team has recovered more.
Head Coach Ben Pirmann and midfielder Emilio Ycaza discussed the match after the final whistle, with key quotes to follow.
Coach Pirmann on his assessment of the night…
We started brilliantly. We were on top of them, Fidel had a great chance and we had two or three other half-chances. It was about 60%-40% possession in the first half and the majority of that possession was in the attacking half and around their goal. Trey made a good save. When you reflect after the first half, we had really good ball speed, really good intent, really good purpose.
In the second half, things opened up a little bit. [Indy] changed shape, but I still thought it was there for us. A couple of things didn’t go our way, but we stuck with it. We took advantage of their mistake and created the goal. We had more chances, so when you walk off the field after 90 minutes, you can hold your head high because we did what we wanted to do. Now we just got to get ready to go to Miami.
Coach Pirmann on team’s resolve to bounce back after going down 1-0…
It was a good response. The guys that came off the bench, Emilio [Ycaza], Tristan [Trager] and Beto [Avila], played very well with a lot of aggression, a lot of directness. Even when it was 0-0, Beto came on and did some great things.
We’re getting to the point where if one guy is not having a great game or if coach makes a sub, we can have a good result. To go down on a soft play where [Indy] were really not threatening us at all is disappointing. If we don’t train well, we’ll get caught. If we take our foot off the gas, we’ll get caught. But, if we’re dialed in, ready to go, we can be a team that can beat anybody. We’re going to do whatever is needed to get the points.
Coach Pirmann on shifting the focus to the Miami match in days…
It’s a tough road trip, not a lot of rest. The good thing about tonight was that we kept the ball really well and made our opponents suffer. But, a tough game against a tough opponent and we’re going to travel again tomorrow night to another turf game against a really tough opponent. We’ll have to be dialed in and make them suffer.
Miami are one of the best defensive teams in the league, so it’s probably going to be a game that takes 80 or 90 minutes to decide, just like tonight. The game tonight is going to be very similar to the game on Saturday. Hopefully, we can improve and have the discipline to make a few more plays, fewer mistakes and try to push to get the three points.
Ycaza on the squad’s response in the second half…
Over the whole match, we responded really well. We controlled and dominated the game by creating chances. The only real opportunities that [Indy] had were gifts to them. There were moments that we lost a little bit of focus and concentration, but I thought we played extremely well. [Indy] are a possession-based team and we had more of the ball. We had possession in their half and, despite giving up the penalty, I thought we had the belief that we could turn the game around and create a chance to win it. We were only a couple of minutes away from winning the game.
Ycaza on getting on the scoresheet for the first time with the Battery…
I’m really happy with the performance, happy to be back. It’s always great to be available for the games. I came in around the 70th minute and I knew that didn’t have that much time to make an impact. From when we conceded, the boys really turned around the game, putting pressure, creating chances. I knew that I just needed to come in and continue the flow of the game. I was happy to be able to provide the pass to Tristan, he took advantage of the mistake, and gave me the assist.
Ycaza on turning the page to the Miami game…
They’ve got nothing to lose. They’ve had a tough season. They’re at home and they’re going to look to win. On the mentality side of it, it’s just about having a good start like we had today.
The Battery stay on the road for a match against Miami FC on Sat., July 15. Charleston return to Patriots Point on Sat., July 22, to take on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC in a game that will include the summer-long $3 beer promotion. Tickets are available now via SeatGeek.com, the Battery’s exclusive digital ticketing provider.
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