The Charleston Battery are in Kennesaw, Georgia this week for a Wednesday night battle with Atlanta United 2. Tomorrow's match will be the result of a postponed match originally scheduled for July 5th. ATLUTD2 split points with the Battery at MUSC Health Stadium earlier this season.
Charleston will finish up a three-game road stretch on Wednesday after a 1-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Riverhounds last Saturday. The loss snapped a three-match run in which the Battery failed to conceded, beginning with a 0-0 draw against the Charlotte Independence on August 30th. Steevan Dos Santos scored his 9th goal of the season to take three points and keep the Riverhounds undefeated at Highmark Stadium. ATLUTD2 split points with the Tampa Bay Rowdies at Al Lang on Saturday. Atlanta have earned four points in their last two matches and will look to keep things rolling against the Battery.
While the Battery are finding their feet defensively, the Black and Yellow's attack has been amiss. Charleston have scored just one goal in their last four matches and leading goalscorer, Zeiko Lewis, hasn't found the back of the net since July 20th in a wild win against Hartford Athletic. Spells of international call-ups have kept the dynamic forward from finding his groove but a trip West on I-20 may be the cure to Lewis' drought.
ATLUTD2 have conceded 68 goals this season, tied for the second-most in the USL Championship. 32 of those goals have been conceded at Fifth Third Bank Stadium including a 0-5 loss to Birmingham Legion at the beginning of September. The result is the second time this season that ATLUTD2 has conceded five goals at home in one match. It's been a tough year defensively for ATLUTD2 highlighted by an 8-1 loss to New York Red Bulls on July 13th.
Taylor Mueller returns from his one-match suspension for yellow card accumulation and Joe Kuzminsky will be available for selection after a late illness forced him to miss the Battery's match against Pittsburgh.
Playoff Watch - Another week has come and gone, and the Battery still find themselves looking up at the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Last week's results didn't do the Battery any favors but the gap remains just one point, with a favorable midweek match up against ATLUTD2 tomorrow night. Let's take a look at the important matches coming up in Week 29.
Nashville v. Birmingham - Every Battery fan should be watching this one closely. Nashville and Birmingham square off Tuesday night at First Tennesse Park at 8:00 PM. Birmingham's loss against Saint Louis on Friday means the Battery remain just one point behind Legion FC for the ever-important 10th spot. Nashville will need a positive result to hold off Pittsburgh and North Carolina, who are challenging for a top-four spot.
Saint Louis v. NYRBII - Saint Louis kick off a half-hour after Charleston and host first-place New York Red Bulls II in their Wednesday night match. Saint Louis are three points up on Charleston and need at least a point to keep the Black and Yellow from drawing level on points with a win against ATLUTD2.
Ottawa v Tampa Bay - To say Ottawa is struggling at the moment would be an understatement. The Canadian club have lost their last four and are now only four points up on the 11th place Battery. It doesn't get any easier for the Fury as a hungry Rowdies team come to town Wednesday night. Only four points separate 8th from 11th place and Ottawa could fall into a heated battle for the last few playoff spots.
The Battery are back at MUSC Health Stadium Sunday, September 22 to take on North Carolina FC. Text "Tickets922" to (843) 971-GOAL for special offers.
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ATLUTD2: USL Championship Record, 6-16-6
Goals: Kanakimana (6)
Assists: Kissiedou, Metcalf (3)
Chances Created: Metcalf (44)
Saves: Castanheira (75)
Clean Sheets: Castanheira, Moore (1)
Charleston Battery: USL Championship Record, 8-8-11
Goals: Lewis (6)
Assists: Higashi (4)
Chances Created: Lewis (29)
Saves: Kuzminsky (70)
Clean Sheets: Kuzminsky (6)