A 93rd minute winner from Dante Marini separated the Charleston Battery and Memphis 901 Saturday night.
It was a tough game for both sides that took awhile to get going. The game would open up in the later stages, with Memphis pushing hard to get the win at home, forcing Joe Kuzminsky in goal to a number of saves, but a Kyle Nelson cross deep in stoppage time wasn’t cleared and Marini was on hand to slot the ball into the net and lift his side to the win.
Elliot Collier came closest in the first half, when on 42′, he headed a free kick from the right toward goal, but the effort would hit the post and was cleared.
The two teams went in scoreless at the break, and both sides would have to open up more if they wanted to win the game.
A Memphis free kick bounced menacingly wide at the back post before anyone could get a touch on 53′, as the hosts started the better of the two teams in the second half.
Memphis won a free kick on 70′ that was initially cleared, but a cross back in from the right was put on frame and forced Joe Kuzminsky into a save.
And ten minutes later, the hosts would go close again, as Collier’s cross was cleared for a corner. The set piece was played in and put on target but would clatter the bar and be cleared for another corner, which was also cleared.
Substitute Nicque Daley would provide some fresh legs late on, and on 88′, would force a shot on target from the edge of the box, which was saved by Jeff Caldwell in the Memphis goal.
The Battery would earn a corner on the left shortly after, which bounced at the back post, was reset and fired toward goal, but the effort went wide.
And then, deep in stoppage time, a run up the right wing from Kyle Nelson would put him in a dangerous position, and his ball into the middle wasn’t collected as Dante Marini would pick up the ball and fire a first time shot into the net to put his side in front.
Marini’s second goal of the season came at a huge time for the Battery in what was a difficult game, but the Black and Yellow had indeed dug deep.
And that’s the way it ended. The Battery picked up an important three points, and though cruel on the home team, they will feel as if the points were hard fought.
The Battery next face the Pittsburgh Riverhounds at home on May 4th. Kick off is at 7:30PM.
PHOTO CREDIT ROSS ALMERS PHOTOGRAPHY