RAPIDS SWEEP THE AMERICANS FOR THE FIRST TIME
By: Alex Husting
The Rapids Men defeated the Memphis Americans for the first time in a 3-2 victory on Friday night. Niall Torricelli sealed the victory with the go-ahead goal in the final minute of regulation to give the Rapids their second win of the season.
Each Rapids goal was scored by a different player for Columbus with Clayton Adams starting the night off with a goal less than a minute into the contest. Manny Chavez bookended the first quarter with a goal of his own to tie the match up at 2-2.
The Americans were equally as effective on offense with two consecutive goals from Samuel Castro and Djorde Djordje Djordjevic to keep pace with Columbus. The Americans outshot the Rapids 7-2, but Columbus was able to hold off some of the Memphis attacks.
After Chavez’s goal with just over one minute remaining, both teams went 45 minutes without scoring another. After a combined nine shots in the first quarter, there were just 21 shots in the last three quarters with neither team finding the back of the net.
This drought was ended by a brilliant push from the Rapids that culminated in a goal from the right side by Torricelli that gave Columbus the lead. With just three seconds remaining, Memphis had one last opportunity on a free kick courtesy of a Rapids delay of game but could not break through the Columbus defense.
Tevin West started the match for the Rapids and played the entire first half with the two goals allowed but also eight saves. Zamudio took over in the second half and only had three shots against him, saving all three.
The Rapids Women have won two straight after a huge 3-2 victory over the Americans inside the Columbus Civic Center. When the match headed to overtime it was Emily Burke, in just her fourth match in Columbus, that took over and scored the winning goal.
All of the scoring came in a wild second half that saw the lead change four times. The Americans were the first on the board with a Syndey Walker goal with under five minutes remaining in the third quarter.
The 1-0 lead would not last long due to a Brittney Conway goal just over one minute later to tie things up heading into the fourth quarter. Burke also recorded her first assist of the season on that Conway goal.
The Americans responded at the start of the fourth with an unassisted goal from Kristen Sparks that gave Memphis the lead for the next 10 minutes.
When the Rapids needed a goal to stay alive, they turned to their leading scorer in Olivia Jarrell. Jarrell took it herself and found the back of the net with just 19 seconds remaining in regulation to send the match to overtime.
Despite the even score, the Americans outshot the Rapids 29-21, including 11 shots in what was a scoreless second quarter. Bria Riancho played arguably the best match of her Rapids career with 23 saves on 25 shots against and just two goals allowed. She finished the match with a 92% save percentage.
Angel Hailey was the goalkeeper for the Americans and she finished the match with 11 saves on 14 shots against.
These were both crucial wins for the Rapids as they head into a crucial weekend at the halfway point of the first NISL season.
The broadcast can be viewed in its entirety on the NISL Youtube channel.
Season tickets remain available here.
ABOUT NATIONAL INDOOR SOCCER LEAGUE (NISL):
The National Indoor Soccer League, which has its league office in Georgia, was founded in January 2021 by a group of experienced sports team/league owners with over 40 years of ownership experience. The NISL has plans to grow the league nationally within the next three years and will kick off its inaugural season in December 2021. The league will operate a Men's & Women's division with each market fielding both teams. Fans will be able to watch a men’s and women’s game each gameday. For more information, go to nislpro.com.