MONTCLAIR, N.J. – Penn FC dropped its third in four matches after falling to the New York Red Bulls II 2-1 Friday night.
Although the match began evenly, New York struck first.
A Red Bulls II counter attack saw midfielder Jared Stroud fire a low cross towards the top of the box from the right wing. Andrew Tinari swept the one-touch finish into the bottom corner to give the hosts a 1-0 lead in the 19th minute.
Riding the momentum, Red Bulls II launched another attack down the right wing, José Aguinaga sent a low driven cross through the box. Forward Tom Barlow tapped in the finish to double the lead in the 25th minute.
Rush Soccer’s First Team pressed for a path back into the match late in the first half. In the 40th minute, Lucky Mkosana chested a cross down to Aaron Dennis in the box. After cutting one defender, Dennis forced a save with a hard right-footed strike.
Head Coach Raoul Voss made two halftime substitutions and the injection of Prince Baffoe and Isaac Osae into the attack helped the Blue and White ramp up its offensive pressure in the second half.
The continued pressing from the Penn FC attackers paid off in the 57th minute. Marco Franco swung in a cross to Osae at the back post. Even though Osae’s initial header was saved, Mkosana quickly tapped in the rebound and cut the host’s lead in half.
Osae, Baffoe and Mkosana continued to threaten late in the second half, but the visitors could not find the equalizer it sought and Red Bulls II narrowly escaped with all three points.
The Blue and White return to action Sunday, Aug. 12 for another crucial match at Eastern Conference leaders FC Cincinnati. The match kicks off at Nippert Stadium at 6 p.m. and can be watched on the ESPN+ streaming service.