In the game of soccer, it takes just one magic moment to decide a contest. Indy Eleven got that on the road in Nashville this evening, with Tyler Pasher’s 59th-minute goal standing up as the game winner. With the victory, Indy Eleven moves on to host Louisville City FC in the Eastern Conference title game next weekend, while Nashville SC’s time as a USL Championship club comes to an end.
All but about 100 of the 4,174 in attendance will go home disappointed, while Indy’s visiting fan contingent can celebrate deep into the Music City night.
Pasher’s magical moment came on a beautiful feed from defensive midfielder Tyler Gibson, who played the striker in over the top. Pasher tapped first-time with his left foot, just tucking the ball inside Matt Pickens’s left post for the lone goal of the contest.
Nashville fans thought they may see a recurrence of late-game magic, with Justin Davis poking home a cross in the 89th minute, but Nashville SC’s left back was (correctly) ruled offside by the assistant referee, and the Boys in Gold would earn only half-chances for the final four minutes of the game in stoppage time.
The game sees Nashville SC leave the USL Championship without any silverware, having finished second in the Eastern Conference during the regular season, and falling int he conference semifinal this evening. The Boys in Gold will take on a new challenge in 2020, entering Major League Soccer. The crest will change, many of the faces will change, and the venue will no longer be First Tennessee Park, which has hosted its final professional soccer game for the foreseeable future.
NSC’s two-year run in the USL finishes with a 37-17-22 record in all competitions. While there are bittersweet feelings about the way it ended, certainly fans have made memories to last a lifetime.
- 22′ IND Yellow card – 7 Ayoze (foul)
- 24′ NSH Yellow card – 23 Taylor Washington (fight)
- 24′ IND Yellow card – 20 Karl Ouimette (fight)
- 45’+2 Half time
- 59′ IND GOAL – 23 Tyler Pasher (left-footed half-volley), assisted by 4 Tyler Gibson (long through ball)
- 62′ NSH Substitution – On 4 Derrick Jones, off 23 Taylor Washington
- 67′ NSH Substitution – On 3 Ropapa Mensah, off 10 Lebo Moloto
- 70′ IND Substitution – On 24 Christian Novoa, off 17 Dane Kelly
- 81′ NSH Yellow card – 20 Matt LaGrassa (foul)
- 82′ NSH Substitution – On 11 Kharlton Belmar, off 19 Alan Winn
- 87′ IND Substitution – On 8 Matt Watson, off 23 Tyler Pasher
- 90’+2 NSH Yellow card – 15 Jimmy Ockford (foul)