Next Match – Monterey Bay FC vs Louisville City – 03/18/2023
Louisville City began their season on a positive note with a 3-1 road win over Orange County. Niall McCabe, Cameron Lancaster, and Matiti Mushagalusa all found their first goals while Brian Ownby put on a POTM performance with two assists and a shot that rattled the crossbar. The boys in purple will remain in California for their next match against Monterey Bay.
Entering their sophomore season in the USL, Monterey will be looking to continue the momentum they had in the latter half of last year. They started understandably slow, but began to find their footing by the fall. One could argue their win against LouCity was a turning point for their inaugural campaign. They have one match in the books for 2023 and it ended in a wild 5-3 win against Hartford Athletic. FiveThirtyEight may have only given them a 35% chance to make the playoffs, but it appears they are already setting out to upset those odds.
Alex Dixon is a newcomer to Monterey but has already proven himself to be a threat. Dixon spent the past two seasons in Pittsburgh scoring 4 goals (4th), earning 7 assists (3rd), and a 7.20 player rating (5th) in the 2022 season. A big loss for PIT and a big get for MB. It’s already paid off for MB too, as he scored 3 of their 5 goals. Sam Gleadle was a regular in last season’s MB side. He ended the season with a team-high 8 goals as well as 2 assists. In game one of 2023, he earned an assist. Canadian defender Morey Doner is also one to keep an eye on. The 27-year-old was tied for 1st last season with five assists plus one goal to his name. It’s also worth noting that Monterey Bay has Jason Johnson, who had a brief stint with LouCity in 2020.
Despite MB’s statement home opener, FiveThirtyEight is giving the nod to LouCity to win this one. 57% chance to MB’s 19% chance. Between the importance of establishing early momentum in the first five matches and the desire to right the wrongs of last season’s loss, this will be an important match for Louisville. Can they build upon their play from the OC match and maintain a perfect road record? Despite MB’s improvements, I’m confident the boys in purple can get the job done!
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