Sunday, October 24, 2021

Indy Eleven vs FC Tulsa - 08.32



- Opponent: FC Tulsa
- Location: Carroll Stadium
- Attendance: 6,499
- Final Score: 1-1 D

- Starting XI: Farr, Buckmaster, Timmer, Adewole, Seagrist, Koffie, Partida, Moon, Ayoze (C), Vassell, Arteaga
- Substitutions: Moon 65' (Sissoko); Gutjahr 86' (Vassell); Ouimette 90' (Koffie) 
- Unused: Edwards, Doyle, Hackshaw, Liu

- Scoring Summary:
IND - Vassell 71'| (assist Ayoze)
TUL - Johnson 78' (assist Marlon)

- Bookings:
TUL - Fenwick 32' (Yellow)
IND - Arteaga 43' (Yellow)
IND - Adewole 72' (Yellow)

- Referee: Melvin Rivas
- Adage goals: None

Thoughts and Opinions

As a result of Tulsa's Wednesday win against Atlanta, this game meant absolutely nothing as it related to the Central Division standings...from Indy's perspective. Tulsa's 4-0 win against Atlanta United 2 finally put Indy on the wrong side of the math. Indy would be spending the playoffs like the rest of us; watching from the comfort of our homes instead of at the stadiums. However, Tulsa knew that a draw against Indy would secure their spot in the playoffs. So, one team was playing just hard enough to not lose and the other was playing for pride.

Indy started the game without Law, Ledesma, or Wild on the game day roster, and Moon was on the bench. While Indy has other options for their offense, those are four dynamic players to not have at your disposal. As a result of each team's goals for the game and Indy's roster, Indy started the game dominating possession, but with very little to show for that possession. Tulsa's back four and midfield set a wall that Indy couldn't find a way to break. The game was evenly played, with both Indy and Tulsa getting 9 shots, and Tulsa edging Indy 5 to 4 on shots on target. 

Then Indy scored in the 71st minute off a rocket from Vassell and the entire plan changed for Tulsa. The draw was now out of play. With upcoming games on Wednesday and Saturday against a surging Memphis and a potential other playoff team in OKC, Tulsa decided that they needed to go for the win in Indy rather than wait. Seven minutes later, Tulsa equalized from a scrum off of a free kick. 

Photo Credit: Matt Schlotzhauer
The good news is that Indy held on for the draw in front of their fans on "Fan Appreciation Night" to give the last part of the season something resembling positive results, with a 1W-3D-1L record in their last five games. 

Indy was also able to celebrate another player reaching 100 appearances with the team as Ayoze reached the milestone with this game. It's difficult to say how many more games Indy gets with Ayo based on his age, but even though he'll turn 36 years old in November, he's still playing better than many guys in this league. We hated to see him play against Indy when he was with the Cosmos, but definitely glad we've been able to get 100 games for Indy. 

Additional Thought

Remember last game when I said that you're going to get some "NO NO NO NO NO" moments from Farr. This one exemplifies it. "This is trouble," is exactly right Brad. I'm not sure why Jordan thought he needed to come out that far, but it nearly put Indy down early in the first half.

The Game Beckons Game Ball

Photo Credit: Matt Schlotzhauer
Despite my regular concerns about Vassell's ability to hold onto the ball, the guy played his ass off in this game and he was unafraid to take shots on goal. Something that the team drastically needed because Indy had 0% accuracy on 8 crosses. Vassell, on the other hand, was unafraid to shoot whenever he got the chance. Vassell was responsible for 3 of Indy's 4 shots on target. 

It may not have been the game winner that the team wanted, but it was enough to get Vassell the GBGB.

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