Charleston shut out the most potent road offense in USL PRO Saturday night, climbing to fourth place in the league table with a comprehensive 3-0 win over an LA Blues squad that entered the night averaging three goals a game during its last three away dates.
The Battery’s first two goals came from midfielder Nicki Paterson and forward Dane Kelly, who share the team scoring lead with seven apiece. Its two offensive super-subs — attacking midfielder Ben Fisk and center forward Heviel Cordoves — combined for the final goal in the 89th minute.
After the team whiffed on a series of promising attacks in the early going, Paterson opened the scoring in the 24th minute after left back Emmanuel Adjetey intercepted a Blues clearance at midfield and chipped ahead into the box, where Paterson
passed ahead, and continued his overlapping run into the left corner, where Paterson settled Adetey’s centering pass and drilled the ball past charging Los Angeles keeper Carl Woszczynski.
In the 54th minute, a Battery counter-attack produced one of the finest goals of the 2013 season, when Jose Cuevas spotted winger Quinton Griffin running even with a defender on the left side. Cuevas’ slide-rule pass into space on the wing reached the speedy Griffin in stride, and his decisive cross found Kelly filling the central channel for a point-blank header.
The Battery out-shot the dynamic Blues 16-8, and would have run up the score were it not for a quality outing by Woszczynski, who earned credit for eight saves on the night.
An engaged crowd of 4,614 celebrated the victory, and with fans in the E-1o Supporters section drumming and cheering throughout.
The Battery entered the night tied for 5th place with Los Angeles on 33 points. The win also propelled them past Charlotte in the standings when the Eagles dropped a stunning 0-4 home loss to Phoenix, giving the expansion Wolves their first road win in franchise history.
Charleston completed its three-game July home stand with nine points, climbing from eighth to fourth in the league table. The Battery play at Wilmington on Friday before hosting undefeated Richmond at Blackbaud Stadium on Saturday.
Game wrap on Sunday.
TOP IMAGE: Nicki Paterson settles an assist from Emmanuel Adjetey moments before striking the first goal of the night past Blues keeper Carl Woszczynski. Dan Conover photo.