By Sam Agnitsch
The OKC Energy concluded their recent road trip Tuesday night defeating the Swope Park Rangers 2-0. Playing without suspended captain Michael Thomas, the boys rallied behind their defense and earned a tough 3 points, stunning Swope Park Rangers with two late goals.
The Energy struggled early with the SPR pace up front, allowing SPR speedster Alex Molano to find space in the box and just narrowly hitting the far post with the attempt in the 10th minute. Soon after OKC was able to settle in thanks to some sloppy midfield play and looked to attack on the wings. In the 20th minute Danni Konig played a dangerous ball into the box for Wojciech Wojcik which was snuffed out in a crowd of SPR defenders. Kalen Ryden joined in on the attack and was able to exploit a disorganized SPR back four crossing in multiple dangerous balls from the left wing. Perhaps the best chance of the half came in the 41st minute with Woj taking a nice turn into the box, forcing SPR keeper John Kempin to make a superb kick save preserving the 0-0 score line just before halftime. The opportunities were there but the goals weren’t for both sides. This would change in the second half.
Following the pattern in the first half, SPR came out firing again. SPR quickly peppered Laurendi out of the gate although most shots being directly at the keeper. Then in the 59th minute Laurendi was called on to make two fantastic saves, the first saving a shot near post after being pulled out of the box and the second coming on the rebound attempt pushing the shot over the crossbar after hustling back. SPR continued the onslaught and appeared destined for a goal until the 84th minute when super-sub Coy Craft tapped in a cross-box pass from fellow sub Timo Pitter. The goal stunned a SPR team that was controlling much of the match but were even more shocked at what followed. Pitter once again got involved in the box and collected a nice pass off his chest to bury the final goal in the 90th minute sealing the 3 points for OKC.
The Energy added to their unbeaten streak now reaching four games and will look for number five July 16 when they take on Orange County Blues at Taft Stadium.