Indy Eleven Fail to Take Full Advantage of Opportunity Presented Against Hartford

Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

All the Eleven had to do was beat the worst team in the league, at home. If they do that they jump Birmingham in the standings. But it wasn’t to be. Last week, the Eleven forced an early red card. This week the soccer gods would demand tribute for that favor as it was the Eleven’s turn to receive the early sending-off.

Bonehead Move from Diz Pe

Before the game could settle in, Hartford won a corner. The ensuing corner kick Adrian Diz clattered into the Hartford goalkeeper, but there were some extracurricular activities in the box. A Hartford player pushed Adrian Diz Pe to the ground away from the play.

Apparently, the Athletic players didn’t take kindly to Diz Pe’s challenge on their keeper. I, for one, think keepers are far too protected in this sport, but that’s neither here nor there. As Diz Pe went to ground he threw up a boot toward the defender’s face making slight contact.

But no matter how significant the contact that’s an automatic red card every time. In the tenth minute, the Eleven found themselves on the opposite side of a sending off, and the Indy Eleven center back was sent packing. As a result, he will miss the all-important match against Birmingham next weekend.

Bonehead Mistake by Aodhan Quinn

Sensing a theme here? Yeah, that isn’t going away anytime soon. After Diz Pe was sent off, the Eleven chased the game for two whole minutes before Aodhan Quinn fumbled on a back pass which allowed Athletic attacker, Kyle Edwards, one-on-one with the keeper. Edwards would capitalize and put the Athletic up 1 in the 12th minute. 

Bonehead Move by Tristan Hodge 

Hartford defender, Tristan Hodge, wanted to get it on the boneheaded buffoonery. Already on a yellow card, Hodge got in a scuffle with Eleven midfielder Cam Lindsey. Long story short, Hodge swung an arm out at Lindley which forced the official to produce a second yellow for Hodge, sending him off in the 49th minute.

Eleven Equalize Late 

Back on equal footing, the Eleven were really able to flex their muscle and impose their will the rest of the match. Several chances were either saved or went wide of the posts. Until, in the 85th minute, the Eleven sent in a long throw into the box. The ball would find its way to Jack Blake. Bake, in one touch, lashed the ball into the corner of Hartford’s net. The Brickyard Battalion erupted at watching their Boys in Blue draw level. 

Bonehead Mistake by Gustavo Rissi

The game went into stoppage time, but the fun was far from over. The Eleven poured numbers forward trying to steal victory from the jaws of defeat which left them incredibly vulnerable to a quick counterattack. That counterattack came in the 93rd minute.

A speedy Antoine Hoppenot found himself on the end of a Hartford clearance and found himself one on one with Rissi. Rissi would get his angles horribly wrong and, in a flash, Hoppenot was in on goal. Rossi, trailing close behind, did the only thing he could to save the draw and tackled Hoppenot from behind. This resulted in another well-deserved red card. The Eleven lose their second center back of the match. 

By the time the final whistle blew the score was 1-1 and Indy was playing with nine men. Something you don’t see very often. Both suspended players against Birmingham next week are center backs, leaving the Eleven extremely thin at the position. So if you played center back at any point in your life, just show up at Grand Park during Eleven training and you may find yourself in the starting IX next week. 

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