Top of the Table North Texas SC continues to roll

North Texas SC was victorious over Real Monarchs by a score of 2-1 on Friday with beautiful goals scored by Pedrinho and Tarik Scott from the home side.

Head Coach John Gall described the match as a “Really good result against a very positive team, [Real Monarchs] were well organized and played good football.”

The Match

Despite what the social media lineup said, Coach Gall had North Texas starting in a 3-4-3 shape, with the typical attacking trio of Sali-Scott-Pedrinho leading the line.

The NTX 3-4-3 shape at kickoff vs Real Monarchs.
The 3-4-3 shape at kickoff

The match started red hot, with each side getting dangerous chances early, but each were snuffed out just before they could threaten the net.

The next 20 minutes of the match after the early flurry was a deadlock, with each side feeling each other out but with no real success either way. Captain Nico Gordon earned a yellow card for ensuring he was not dribbled around.

The game began to open up a bit more after, as the ensuing set piece for Real Monarchs was a dangerous one, then a deflection fell kindly for Tarik Scott who took it from the halfway line into the box before his shot was blocked.

In the 36th minute, GOAL North Texas! Tomas Pondeca slid a beautiful through ball into the box for Pedrinho, who cut inside and chipped it over the keeper after the ball bounced up on him. A goal in consecutive games for Pedrinho now.

Real Monarchs would equalize just a few minutes later, after the normally reliable Michael Collodi had a nightmare as a long-range curling effort went through his arms and legs and into the net.

So there was nothing to separate the two sides as they went in for the halftime break, knotted at one.

A friendly face dropped by for the North Texas match, as former North Texas member Ricardo Pepi returned to watch his former club.

North Texas wasted no time getting to it in the second half, as Tarik Scott restored the host’s lead after just 7 minutes! A sumptuous through ball from Pedrinho to the top of the 18-yard box for Tarik Scott set the young striker up for the chance, who then unleashed a powerful low-driven shot into the corner and in.

Turner Humphrey earned a yellow in the 63rd minute in the same fashion as his fellow center back, denying a Real Monarchs attacker trying to dribble around him. The ensuing set piece turned into a big chance for the away side but Collodi had a big kick save to deny another equalizing goal.

North Texas switched to the 4-3-3 in the second half.

North Texas frustrated Real Monarchs the rest of the second half, as each Monarchs chance was snuffed out by a North Texas player before they could get a shot off. As such North Texas earned all 3 points on the night, for another win at home!

Tarik Scott earned the Man of the Match hat honors on the night, as his goal was the difference maker in the match as well as playing a strong game throughout.

Quotes and Takeaways

North Texas shut the Monarchs down for most of the full 90, in spite of the goal the Monarchs were unable to get any momentum going forward or much to threaten Collodi in net.

Goalkeeper Michael Collodi has been massive for North Texas in 2024, but one of the aspects of his game that might get overlooked is his willingness to leave the net to cut out a chance. Multiple times a game Collodi will be faster to an opposing long ball than an attacker, which is very important for the team’s ability to keep opponents in their own half.

After the match, Coach Gall remarked “After the adjustments at halftime, we came out and made things a lot more difficult for them, and obviously it was great seeing Tarik get the winning goal”

On being top of the league pending this weekend’s results “I think we are all super competitive people… this is what we are all about and this is what we want to do!”

On his match-winning goal, Tarik Scott said to himself “let me try something” before unleashing it into the bottom left corner.

North Texas will travel to Los Angeles to take on the team that is in second in the standings, LAFC 2, next Sunday.

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