A hat trick of assists from left-back Tyshawn Rose and a second-half brace from Jose Mulato saw North Texas SC capture all three points at home over St. Louis City 2.
Nolan Norris and Amet Korca make their return to the North Texas starting XI after a week away with the first team. Herbert Endeley once again starts on the wing with on-loan Yeicar Perlaza at right back. Most notably in the lineup, Nolan Norris played as a central defensive midfielder as opposed to left or center back.
Tyshawn Rose started despite a red card in the most recent match versus Rapids 2 as MLS Next Pro rules will have him serving his red card on the next match versus the opponent the red card was earned against.
Julian Eyestone gets the start between the posts as Antonio Carrera is away with USYNT duty.
Many North Texas games have started with the attacking focus going to long balls stretching the opposing defensive backline, with this match being no exception as Hope Avayevu and Endeley have received multiple over-the-top passes within the first half hour.
Norris, in his first NTSC start as a 6, looked well-composed on the ball with good distribution.
Eyestone keeps St Louis off the board as a quick counter-attack sees the away side through on goal.
St Louis City 2 scored the opener, as a strike off the crossbar finds an attacker’s foot, who slides it past the young Eyestone to break the deadlock.
A crucial first-half save from Eyestone kept the game within reach for North Texas at halftime, as the home side has not shown enough going forward and St Louis heads into the break up a goal.
Just after halftime… GOAL North Texas equalized! 8 minutes into the second half Avayevu dropped a smart pass to Rose who cuts it back to the center of the box for Jose Mulato to smash it home for his first goal of the season! It’s worth noting that Diego Garcia made a smart choice to dummy the pass to Mulato.
Less than two full minutes after the goal St Louis was reduced to 10 men after Endeley blew past three defenders and is dragged down by the last while through on goal. An easy call for the referee here.
GOAL! North Texas took the lead after a rebound perfectly finds Mulato wide open who made no mistake with his chance. St Louis had been fighting hard to stay in the game after going down a man but Mulato’s goal deflated the away side.
A third for North Texas! Rose’s speed was too much to handle, as he broke free and cut a pass back for Endeley who fired it past the keeper to put the game out of reach for the visitors
After a Goal of the Week nominee last week, Hope tried to one-up himself with another stunning curler from outside the box to put North Texas up by three with minutes to play. Rose earned his third assist on the night after beating the pressing opponent and then finding Hope at midfield.
As experienced by North Texas last week, going down to 10 men can alter heavily alter the dynamic of the match. St Louis worked hard in the second half to stay in it but Eyestone made sure that door was closed.
Outstanding play on the flanks by Hope and Rose as well as dynamism and finishing from Mulato and Endeley saw North Texas earn 3 points at home.
Quotes and Takeaways
The interplay between Tyshawn Rose and Hope Avayevu has developed quickly this season, and the team began to capitalize on here. Rose has shown why the left back spot his his many times this season and is key to success for North Texas.
FC Dallas SuperDraft first-rounder Herbert Endeley was a winger during his time in NCAA play but began the season as a fullback. Endeley has now spent recent matches back as a winger and has capitalized on his chances with his second goal of the season.
“The first half we were very sloppy, very slow, very predictable” Head Coach Javier Cano after the match on the rough first half by North Texas.
Cano also had high praise for the Hope-Rose connection that is developing on the left side of the field, “They are like brothers, they connect on every single movement they do… I am very happy with his hat trick of assists.”
North Texas head out west to take on SJ Earthquakes II on Friday before returning home to Choctaw Stadium Sunday, May 21st.