USLSoccer.com Staff Report
Saturday, February 27, 2016
OKLAHOMA CITY – FC Dallas took a 2-1 victory against OKC Energy FC on Saturday night in front of a sellout crowd of more than 7,000 fans at Taft Stadium, as goals by Atiba Harris and Timo Pitter led the MLS side to victory against its USL partner.
Harris gave Dallas the lead in the fifth minute as the visitors sprung forward quickly on a counter-attack. Tesho Akindele picked up possession close to the top-left of the penalty area, and sent a pass across the top of the box to an onrushing Harris, who fired home a brilliant first-time finish into the left corner of the net.
Harris also played a part in Dallas’ second goal 10 minutes later, as he picked up a clever lifted pass by Mauro Rosales on the right side. Harris cut in from the flank, and sent a low cross through the penalty area that found Pitter, who curled his finish into the right corner.
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Energy FC pulled a goal back in the 27th minute as a long pass to the right found Evans Frimpong. The winger quickly slipped a pass inside to Michael Byskov as he broke into the penalty area, and the Dane’s shot deflected off Zach Loyd and found the back of the net.
Dallas almost restored its two-goal lead two minutes before the break as Akindele powered a header toward goal from a corner kick by Rosales, but Energy FC goalkeeper Cody Laurendi made a big save to keep the score 2-1 at the break.
That would be the way it remained throughout the second half too, as neither side was able to take advantage of its scoring opportunities. Overall, though, the night was one where both sides provided entertainment for Energy FC’s fourth sellout crowd in its last five games at Taft Stadium.
“Props go out to the fans for making the atmosphere unbelievable,” said Laurendi. “As we move forward, we have a lot of positives to build on. Obviously, we are unhappy that we lost. But I think that we showed that we could play, and we could play with anybody.”