The third match this week seemed to take its toll on Energy FC with the home side unable to create much in the opening half. Tucker Stephenson had the best look at goal just before halftime, but his effort from the top of the box missed high.
With quality chances few and far between, it looked as if a single goal would be enough to win the match and it was. Unfortunately, it was the visitors who capitalized.
A counterattack in the 66th minute led to Justin Dhillon finding Marcus Epps in behind the OKC defense. Mitch Osmond tracked across to cut off Epps, but the forward was able to cut inside and fire past CJ Cochran for the winning goal.
As has been the case all season, Energy FC didn’t quit and nearly found a late equalizer with Arun Basuljevic striking the crossbar in the 90th minute and Villyan Bijev forcing a good save out of SAFC goalkeeper Matt Cardone in stoppage time.
Energy FC remains on 35 points and in the fourth and final playoff spot in the Central Division.
The Greens are on the road at Austin Bold FC next Sunday at 8:00 p.m. CT. They return to Taft Stadium for the final home match of the regular season on Sunday, October 17 at 5:00 p.m. against Birmingham Legion FC. Tickets are available at energyfc.com/october17.
SA: Epps (Dhillon), 66’
OKC: Kurimoto (Yellow Card), 31’
SA: Taintor (Yellow Card), 34’
OKC: Batista (Yellow Card), 54’
SA: Gallegos (Yellow Card), 80’
OKC: Bijev (Yellow Card), 86’
SA: Hopeau (Yellow Card), 90+
OKC Starting XI: GK: CJ Cochran; D: Conor Donovan (c), Mitch Osmond, Lamar Batista; M: Mueng Sunday (Kodai Iida, 74’), Tucker Stephenson, Hiroki Kurimoto (Brad Dunwell, 45’), Charlie Ward (Aidan Daniels, 71’), F: Jaime Chavez (Seyi Adekoya, 74’), Arun Basuljevic, Villyan Bijev
Subs not used: Sam Howard, Zach Ellis-Hayden, Deklan Wynne
SA Starting XI: GK: Cardone; D: Taintor, Ford, Deplagne (Lema, 70’); M: Maloney, Victor Giro (c) (Lindley, 45’), Khmiri; F: Nathan (Dhillon, 60’), Epps, Gallegos (Hopeau, 89’)
Subs not used: Mercado, Varela, Sjoberg