The Swope Park Rangers’ (5-17-7, 22 points) streak of three straight clean sheets came to an end Wednesday night after losing to Loudoun United (7-15-6, 27 points) by a 4-1 scoreline at Segra Field in Leesburg, Virginia.
Sporting KC Academy product Wilson Harris scored his team-leading ninth goal of the season. The forward converted a penalty in the 37th minute, making it seven goals in his last eight games. Newly acquired Argentine Luis Olivera made his debut for the Rangers, as well, started on the right side of the backline.
The Rangers came out ready to play as Felipe Hernandez had a shot on goal in the first two minutes. Calle Brown was able to save the Sporting KC loanee’s shot en route to a six-save performance. Fellow Sporting KC player Wan Kuzain took the next shot on goal five minutes later and again Brown was ready for it.
Gordon Wild, who would end up with a hat trick, got the scoring started in the 10th minute off a free kick. There was nothing for Max Trejo to do as Wild’s perfectly executed curling set piece landed in the top left corner of the goal. Loudoun kept their foot on the gas as no more than a minute later they had a one-on-one with Trejo. This time the 17-year-old stood his ground and made the save to keep SPR in the contest.
The Rangers began to mount an attack and started sustaining possession, with Hernandez giving the Rangers their best chance yet in the 27th minute. He lined up a free kick and nearly copied Wild’s success. The midfielder’s shot was slightly off target and skimmed off the side netting and out for a goal kick.
The Rangers found their equalizer in the 37th minute as Olivera slipped Mark Segbers behind the defense. Segbers cut in towards goal but was upended by Brown and was awarded a penalty for his efforts. Harris stepped up and kept his hot streak with a coolly taken penalty. He put the ball in the lower left corner and sent Brown diving to the right.
The deadlock would not last long as Wild stole the lead back in the 43rd minute. He took a shot from outside the box and put it past Trejo in the bottom left corner of the net.
Loudoun made a pair of substitutes right out of the half and looked to hold onto their one-goal lead. SPR made their first switch in the 51st minute, bringing on Alexsander for Olivera. Alexsander made an immediate impact, winning a free kick near the corner flag. Rassambek Akhamtov went for the back post and nearly beat Brown who barely got a fist to the spinning shot.
In the 68th minute, SPR brought on Ze Pedro for Tucker Lepley but in that same minute Loudoun doubled their lead. Theodore Ku-Dipietro found space on a corner and slotted home Loudoun’s third goal.
Trejo then made a pair of excellent saves, leaving his feet to box Elvis Amoh’s shot over the box and diving to keep Griffin Yow off the scoresheet. Loudoun was awarded a penalty of their own in the 85th minute. Wild took on the responsibility and converted it, completing his hat trick.
Things escalated in the 90th minute after Ethan Vanacore-Decker was fouled in the attacking third. Both teams had a coming together after an altercation between Vanacore-Decker and Ku-Dipietro, which saw both of them being sent off.
The Rangers will look to get back on track at home on Monday versus Birmingham Legion FC (11-12-6, 39 points). Kickoff is at 7 p.m. CT and tickets are available at SeatGeek.com. Fans can also stream the match on ESPN Plus or follow @SwopeRangers on Twitter for live updates.
2019 USL Championship
Game 29 of 34
Segra Field | Leesburg, Virginia
Weather: 69 degrees and clear
|Swope Park Rangers (5-17-7, 22 points)||1||0||1|
|Loudoun United FC (7-15-6, 27 points)||2||2||4|
Swope Park Rangers: Max Trejo; Jaylin Lindsey, Kaveh Rad, Camden Riley, Luis Olivera (Alexsander 51'); Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal, Rassambek Akhmatov (Ethan Vanacore-Decker 82'), Felipe Hernandez (C); Tucker Lepley (Ze Pedro 68'), Wilson Harris, Mark Segbers
Subs Not Used: John Pulskamp, Jahon Rad, Killian Colombie, Tyler Freeman
Loudoun United FC: Calle Brown; Peabo Doue (C) (Chris Odoi-Atsem 46'), Shane Wiedt, Collin Verfurth, Hunter Gorskie; Nelson Martinez (Theodore Ku-Dipietro 46'), Antonio Bustamante, Griffin Yow, Gordon Wild, Andrew Lubahn (Kevin Paredes 68'); Elvis Amoh
Subs Not Used: Colin Miller, Noah Pilato, Connor Presley, Christian Sorto
LDN -- Gordon Wild 6 (unassisted) 10'
SPR -- Wilson Harris 9 (penalty kick) 37'
LDN -- Gordon Wild 7 (Hunter Gorskie 1) 43'
LDN -- Theodore Ku-Dipietro 1 (unassisted) 68'
LDN -- Gordon Wild 8 (penalty kick) 85'
SPR -- Rassambek Akhmatov (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 34'
SPR -- Wilson Harris (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 40'
LDN -- Hunter Gorskie (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 81'
LDN -- Theodore Ku-Dipietro (red card; violent conduct) 90'
SPR -- Ethan Vanacore-Decker (red card; violent conduct) 90'
|Shots on Goal||7||9|
Referee: Natalie Simon
Assistant Referee: Max Smith
Assistant Referee: Izzy Campos
Fourth Official: Paolo Cardella