Jacksonville Sports Day

NASL: Indy Eleven Sinks Armada Despite Keita Goal

Photo by Indy Eleven/Matt Schlotzhauer

Alhassane Keita found the back of the net for the first time in league play this season and almost had another on Wednesday night, but it was not enough for the Jacksonville Armada to overtake the NASL Spring Season champion Indy Eleven in a 5-2 loss at Michael A. Carroll Stadium.

Keita, who was the Armada’s leading scorer in 2015, struck gold in the 33rd minute when he was able to snatch the ball from Indy’s Don Smart and smash it into the back of the net from just outside the box with his left foot.

It was his first goal since his game-winner in Jacksonville’s thrilling 2-1 extra time victory over the Charleston Battery in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup third round on June 1.

It looked like the Guinean striker would have another tally to his total in the 80th minute when defender Matt Bahner curled in a picture-perfect cross just in front of the goal for a streaking Keita, but the Eleven’s Colin Falvey got a foot on it first to put it past Indy goalkeeper Jon Busch for an own goal.

Indy’s leading goal scorer Éamon Zayed led his squad with a hat-trick effort, netting goals in the 16th, 58th and 65th minutes. Forward John Braun assisted on Zayed’s second goal and scored one of his own in the 13th. Nemanja Vukovic had the Eleven’s other goal in the 36th minute.

The Armada will return home Saturday for a 7 p.m. fixture against the Carolina RailHawks.

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