North Texas Soccer Club traveled out to the east coast to compete against reigning USL League One Champions Greenville Triumph SC. It was a tough match for the young Texas club as they lost 0-4.
Eric Quill made two changes to the starting lineup by introducing Richard Sanchez and Kazu for their first start of the season. Derek Waldeck moved higher in the field to pair alongside Imanol Almaguer in the midfield.
Greenville found early success from Marios Lomis‘ header from the second-ball off a free-kick.
The Triumph doubled their lead after Don Smart ran down the right side and played a short cross to Andrew Booth who finished the opportunity.
Quill opted to bring in Juan Parra and Bernard Kamungo for Collin Smith and Alex Bruce respectively at halftime.
Matthew Corcoran entered the match for Kazu as North Texas looked to turn the game in their favor in the 57th minute.
Greenville Triumph had other ideas as Marios Lomis grabbed his second goal just outside of the box on the left.
Alejandro Viniegra came in for Hope Avayevu in the 65th minute.
Lachan McLean sealed the win for Greenville with the final goal of the game.
It didn’t get better for North Texas SC as Gibran Rayo and Kazu both were sent off for professional behavior in the 77th minute.
Rio Ramirez was the final substitute for North Texas SC as he came in for Imanol Almaguer in the 89th minute.
North Texas SC were outplayed with the final score being 0-4.
Thoughts & Takeaways
North Texas SC has an abundance of individual talent within its roster. The difference in playing styles makes defending as a team difficult at the start of the season when players are new to each other.
Coach Quill stressed to the broadcast crew that preventing dead-ball situations and completing defensive plays are areas that his team can work on. Greenville was able to exploit these weaknesses to their advantage to dominate the match.
It shouldn’t be surprising that the defensive game of North Texas SC lags behind the attacking success. It takes time and multiple games not only for the back-line but also for the team to successfully implement the defensive game-plan as a whole.
That doesn’t mean that individual players are struggling. Mickey Maldonado has demonstrated his defensive capabilities and one can imagine the success he, along with a consistent back-line, can have over the course of the season.
Typically, such a one-sided loss has few positive takeaways. For North Texas SC, this loss provides many learning opportunities for the young team.
Playing against the reigning league champions will require a team to play their best game. Greenville has started 2021 with significantly less turnover in personal in comparison to North Texas SC. The Triumph is arguably a much better competition than Fort Lauderdale CF.
The better competition serves as a reminder to the newer faces of the quality of competition that they will face over the course of a season. The severe loss can serve as a reminder of the difficulties that playing the sport at a professional level entails.
Fans shouldn’t be worried in the long term for North Texas SC as Eric Quill and his staff will tactically take-away the areas the team needs to work on. Oddly enough, having a tough loss early on in the season can do plenty of good for the North Texas SC in the long term.
North Texas returns home to play against Chattanooga Red Wolves SC on Saturday, May 8th, at 7:30 PM.