Jacksonville Sports Day

NASL: Armada FC Shuts Out FC Edmonton Friday on Kilduff’s Goal

A chilly Friday night matchup in Canada led to not only a victory for the Jacksonville Armada FC, but also three crucial points as The NASL Championship inches closer. The team battled FC Edmonton at Clarke Stadium to a one-nill end.

“We played some extremely good football in the first half,” said Jacksonville head coach Mark Lowry, “and in the second half we managed the game to see it through and do what was needed to collect the points.”

Ciarán Kilduff notched the loan goal of the night for the visitors. The victory comes after a three-game scoreless drought for Jacksonville and nudged the team back into fourth place in the combined season standings, a position for a playoff seed.

Although the first half did not see any goals, Jacksonville applied pressure early to the Eddies in the first 30 minutes.

Tony Taylor received the first chance on goal for the Armada FC nine minutes into the game. He fired a shot straight up the middle, but it found the hands of Edmonton goalkeeper Tyson Farago.

Drew Beckie attempted the most promising shot in the first half off of a corner in the 16th minute. Zach Steinberger sent the ball into the box, where Kalen Ryden and Nicklas Maripuu found contact before Beckie tried to chip it into the net. It went just over the crossbar though.

Edmonton almost made it on the board midway through the first half. Sainey Nyassi delivered a cross to Jake Keegan in the box, but his header hit the woodwork before goalkeeper Caleb Patterson-Sewell secured the rebound.

Halftime came and went with neither team ahead.

Derek Gebhard was subbed in for the Armada FC almost twenty minutes into the second half, and his fresh legs gave his team a spark. He had the first attempt on goal in the 65th minute, but Farago stopped him in his tracks inside the box.

Two minutes later, Gebhard again used his speed to gain possession of the ball around midfield before passing to Kalen Ryden in the left corner of the field. Ryden sent a cross into the box where Kilduff was able to head it home and put Jacksonville on the board.

The Eddies tried to answer immediately with a shot by Fisk, but Patterson-Sewell dived to save it.

They almost equalized in the 89th minute when Nicolás Di Biase launched a free kick over the wall, but Patterson-Sewell again saved it with a one-hand tip over of the top.

Patterson-Sewell earned his ninth clean sheet this year and the Armada FC took its fourth 1-0 victory over the Eddies when the final whistle blew.

“These were a much-needed 3 points at a crucial stage of the season,” Lowry said. “It was a fantastic team effort against a very good Edmonton team.”

Jacksonville now returns to Hodges Stadium for the final home matches of the Fall Season in a three-game home stand. First up is a matchup with North Carolina FC on Friday, Oct. 13 at 7:30 p.m.

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