By Quin Welch, LouCity Insider
LEXINGTON, Ky. — Louisville City FC took home a 3-0 victory against the University of Kentucky on Wednesday at the Wendell and Vickie Bell Soccer Complex on UK’s campus.
LouCity won the game in convincing fashion, due in large part to an impressive offensive explosion in the first half. After seeing a would-be goal called offside call, 2016 addition Andrew Lubahn guided home a corner kick from former Wildcat George Davis IV in the 23rd minute.
The scoring continued just moments later, as Kadeem Dacres — who scored the match-winner against the University of Louisville last week — connected with Guy Abend on a give-and-go before smashing in a goal from the right side of the box.
The scoring ceased until the 84th minute, when Mark-Anthony Kaye pushed a split through ball into the UK defense, and Chandler Hoffman put his shot past the Kentucky goalkeeper. LouCity coach James O’Connor said both linkups are what he is looking for in his attack.
“I think Mark-Anthony played a great ball, with a fantastic run from Chandler,” O’Connor said. “It was an excellent finish.
“Kadeem obviously took his goal very well also.”
O’Connor said that while he was pleased to see his team continue dominating possession a week after they did so against Louisville, there were still some things to work on.
“I think in our final third we need to be better,” O’Connor said. “I think our concentration needs to be stronger. Our passing in the second half needed to be better and quicker.
“There’s still lots of things we feel we have to work on. There’s some aspects that are quite pleasing, but at the moment I have quite a lot of things we need to work on.”
Although LouCity’s attack was something to behold, the defense was spectacular as well. Wednesday’s clean sheet marks the second time out of three preseason games that O’Connor’s squad has kept their opponent scoreless for the full 90 minutes. O’Connor said he was quite pleased with his side’s defending against UK.
The LouCity coach said he’s been impressed with the Wildcats’ program from afar, and recognized their difficulty in dealing with injuries for Wednesday’s fixture.
“UK had a great season last year,” O’Connor said. “We’ve come here a couple times now, and they’ve got a very strong coaching staff, very good coaches. They won a (Conference USA) championship last year. For them, they’ve had five or six injuries to their starters, so it was very difficult for them.”
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While many will remember the three goals, O’Connor will remember how well his back four — which he switched up throughout the match — played on Wednesday and how they’ve played throughout the preseason.
“I think if you look at shots against, there hasn’t been many, which is what we want,” O’Connor said. “We’ve worked a lot on that aspect. For me, I will always have an eye on that sort of stat because I want to see the very best … the back four have been good.”
The victory against UK gives LouCity its third preseason victory of three thus far. Louisville City will play its final preseason match at the North American Soccer League’s Indy Eleven on Saturday in a game that is closed to the public and media.
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Entering 2016, Louisville City FC has returned 13 players from the 2015 roster — including reigning USL Goal of the Season winner Aodhan Quinn and former English Premier League striker Cameron Lancaster. New additions include MLS Cup-winning forward Chandler Hoffman, University of Louisville alumnus Paolo DelPiccolo and University of Kentucky alumnus Davis.
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Louisville City FC begins regular season play on March 26 at Charlotte Independence. LouCity then returns to Louisville Slugger Field on April 2 to host New York Red Bulls II in the home opener, with a special 3 p.m. kickoff.
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Fans can stay up to date with all of Louisville City’s breaking news, roster updates and ticketing information by following the Club on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Season tickets are available for Louisville City’s historic second season via the Club’s official website.
LouCity midfielder George Davis IV played his college soccer for Kentucky from 2007-09 after transferring from Bowling Green State University.
The two sides played each other in 2015 and the game ended in a 0-0 draw.
The Wildcats ended their campaign ranked No. 36 in the nation and lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Louisville City FC returned 13 players from 2015’s historic inaugural squad. That team reached the Eastern Conference Finals.
Goal Scoring Rundown:
LOU- Andrew Lubahn, 23rd minute: Former Kentucky Wildcat George Davis IV crossed a beautiful ball into the box and Lubahn put it home with ease. LOU 1, UK 0
LOU- Kadeem Dacres, 25th minute: The man who won the match for LouCity against the University of Louisville linked up with midfielder Guy Abend and smashed the ball in the back of the net. LOU 2, UK 0
LOU- Chandler Hoffman, 84th minute: Mark-Anthony Kaye left a sweet through ball for Chandler Hoffman in the middle of the box that the former MLS Cup winner smashed home. LOU 3, UK 0
Louisville City FC Match Report
Match: University of Kentucky Men’s Soccer vs. Louisville City FC
Date: March 16, 2016
Venue: Wendell and Vickie Soccer Complex
Kickoff: 7 p.m. EST
Attendance: Not reported.
Weather: 63 degrees; sunny