Orlando City B (3-19-4, 13 points) dropped its 10th straight game tonight as the Young Lions fell 2-1 to Chattanooga Red Wolves SC. After an exciting first half that saw both teams have multiple chances, it was an early second-half goal that was the difference. Tony Walls goal was the winner after Sito Seoane and Leonardo Simas exchanged first-half goals.
OCB made a few changes to the team that fell 3-2 at Toronto FC II last weekend. Christian Herrera returned to the net, replacing Juliano Chade, continuing the team’s trend of rotating between the two goalkeepers. Two regular starters this season, Randy Mendoza and Serginho, returned to the starting lineup after being on the bench in Canada. Steven Hernandez also came into the lineup, replacing Luc Granitur.
While the first half was exhilarating, the teams appeared to lose their energy in the second period. The two teams started fast and had several opportunities in the first 45 minutes. After an early second half push by Chattanooga, which resulted in their second goal, there were very few quality chances in the final 40 minutes.
The Young Lions nearly opened the scoring in the 22nd minute when Thiago Souza and Steven Hernandez both had point-blank chances on goal. William Bagrou played Souza through on goal but Alex Mangels blocked his shot. The ball went right to Hernandez, whose first touch was on goal, but Mangels popped right back up to make the save.
In the 34th minute, Chattanooga scored the first goal of the game. Seoane found some space at the top of the box to take a shot on goal. With his hands behind his back, OCB center back Brandon John turned his body as he attempted to make the block. The ball bounced off his heel and rolled into the corner of the goal, giving the hosts the lead.
After nearly equalizing through Souza in the 37th minute, the Young Lions finally scored two minutes into first half injury time. Dribbling across the box from the right side, Simas took on three defenders before creating some space for a shot. Mangels was unable to get to this one as it trickled just inside the post.
Two minutes into the second half, Chattanooga nearly took the lead back. After captain Conor Doyle had to be helped off the field and replaced, a quick restart provided an opportunity for Seoane to catch Herrera off his line. The tall OCB goalkeeper was able to get his hand up to tip the ball off the crossbar and clear the danger.
The hosts took the lead back in the 54th minute. First-half substitute, Josue Soto, sent a long cross toward the back post. Herrera attempted to get his hand to it but it sailed just over his fingertips. The ball landed on the head of Walls, who headed it down past Herrera and into the OCB goal.
Already down a goal, things got more difficult for OCB when Simas got sent off. After being booked for kicking the ball away in the 62nd minute, he was issued a second yellow for a hard foul in the 67th minute.
However, just seven minutes later, the Young Lions caught a break when Chattanooga suffered a similar situation. Having already been booked in the first half, Leo Folla was booked a second time for a high arm in the 74th minute.
Being down a goal and back to even numbers on the field, you would expect OCB to have the majority of chances late. That wasn’t the case. Chattanooga was able to hold possession rather easily and even created a few chances as the hosts attempted to drain the clock.
OCB was strong offensively in the first half, creating several chances through Souza and Lucas Ontivero. The Young Lions could’ve scored multiple goals in that first half if not for some stellar goalkeeping by Mangels. It looked like a different team coming out for the second half. After giving up an early second half goal, the team was full of frustration. That resulted in Simas’ pair of yellow cards.
The 2-1 loss is OCB’s 10th straight and their 14th in the last 15 games. Having already secured last place in the 2019 USL League One standings, the Young Lions will play their final two games on the road over the next two weeks. The first will be next Friday against the Greenville Triumph SC before ending the season against the Richmond Kickers.