USLSoccer.com Staff Report
Thursday, March 3, 2016
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Charleston Battery rallied for a 1-1 draw against Miami FC during a scrimmage at Patton Park on Thursday. Ricky Garbanzo found the equalizer for Charleston after the team had fallen behind in the opening 20 minutes.
“I think it was a good test of what a regular-season game is going to look like,” Charleston midfielder Zach Prince said. “Our guys weren’t holding anything back, and neither were they.”
Miami opened the scoring around the 20th minute by springing a swift counter off a Battery corner attempt, Prince said.
“We kinda made a mistake defending and didn’t leave as many guys back as we should have,” Prince said. “They went down the left side, crossed it to the right and tapped it in. There was nothing [starting goalkeeper Odisnel] Cooper could have done about it.”
Down a goal, the Battery responded with a series of quality chances, several coming off quality hold-up play by starting center forward Heviel Cordoves. The breakthrough came about 10 minutes later when midfielder and set-piece specialist Justin Portillo lined up over a corner kick.
Portillo’s in-swinging ball to the back post picked out his new midfield partner, holding midfielder Neveal Hackshaw, who headed it toward the goal. Garbanzo reached Hackshaw’s attempt in flight, putting his flick-on redirection into the net from a yard out.
Battery Head Coach Mike Anhaeuser started Cooper in goal, with a back line of (from right) Obi Woodbine, Taylor Mueller, Shawn Ferguson and Emmanuel Adjetey. Prince, Hackshaw, Portillo and Maikel Chang comprised the midfield, with Garbanzo lining up underneath Cordoves.
Cordoves and Cooper came off at halftime, replaced by forward Chris Tsonis and goalkeeper Alex Tambakis. Winger Dante Marini replaced Prince with 15 minutes remaining, following by swaps of Quinton Griffith for Chang, Forrest Lasso for Tsonis, and former Seattle Sounders FC 2 signing Duncan McCormick replacing Garbanzo with 10 minutes remaining.