READING, PA (July 23, 2016) – Reading United A.C. advanced to the Premier Development League Eastern Conference Championship Game with a come from behind 2-1 victory over the visiting Carolina Dynamo. The visitors struck first just sixteen minutes into the match before United staged a furious comeback in the second half with goals from Pierre Reedy and Gilbert Waso.
United opened the game by putting the visitors under near constant pressure. Reedy, a Berks County native, led United’s attack, providing good service to Reading target forward Frantzdy Pierrot from his wide position. In the 4th minute, Reedy’s service set up Pierrot for a free header that forced Carolina goalkeeper Matt Jegier into making a good save.
Against the run of play, Carolina got on the scoreboard first in the 16th minute. Reading failed to effectively deal with a Dynamo free kick, allowing the ball to bobble dangerously in the penalty area. Brian Anunga pounced to poke the ball past Steffen Kraus, who was left stranded on his goal line after the ball took a deflection.
Staggered by the Dynamo’s goal at first, Reading pulled themselves back into the match by creating a number of quality chances in the final third of the field. Though the hosts managed to outshoot Carolina, 5-3, they couldn’t find the equalizer and headed into half time trailing, 1-0.
Following the break, Reading flew out of the traps and had their equalizer just 40 seconds into the second half. Centerback Rob Sagel played a long ball down the right flank to Ismael Noumansana. The powerful winger beat his mark and sent a blistering cross through the Dynamo penalty area to Reedy. The hometown player turned and fired a ball past Jegier to level the game at 1-1.
With all the momentum behind them, Reading continued to pile forward in search of more goals. United would get the go ahead goal in the 63rd minute. Midfielder Aaron Molloy played a long diagonal cross to Reedy in the left channel. The winger turned his defender with some clever footwork before finding the late run of Gilbert Waso. Waso split two defenders and scored with his first touch of the game after coming on in the 62nd minute.
Reading fans were forced to sweat out the final moments of the match as the Dynamo mustered a flurry of chances as full time approached. The center back duo of Sagel and Kaique Fernandes did well to snuff out any Carolina threat while Steffen Kraus made four second half saves to preserve United’s lead.
Referee Mark Treilman’s last blast on the whistle cemented United’s 2-1 victory over the Dynamo. The win sends Reading into a showdown with their archrivals, the Ocean City Nor’easters, in the Eastern Conference Championship Game on Sunday, July 24th.
Reading Head Coach Stephen Hogan said of his team’s performance, “We dominated very quickly. We had two or three chances that didn’t bounce our way. We conceded a pretty lucky goal, with the deflection. After that, we started to come into the game even more. At halftime, it was one of the simplest team talks I probably would have ever had to give because all we needed to do was switch the play quicker and win our second balls. We took care of defensive set pieces throughout the night and once we started to switch the play more quickly and win those second balls, we just started to take over even more.”
Looking ahead to the clash with Ocean City, Hogan said, “It had to be them. I think it’s going to be a massive game. It’s going to be great for one of us to be in the National Semi-Final, I just want it to be us.”
The Premier Development League Eastern Conference Championship Game will be played at Exeter’s Don Thomas Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7:00pm. Tickets for the PDL Eastern Conference Championships are available at www.readingunitedac.com or on game day at the Don Thomas Stadium ticket office.
CAR: Brian Anunga - 16'
RUAC: Pierre Reedy (Ismael Noumansana) - 46'
RUAC: Gilbert Waso (Pierre Reedy) - 63'
READING UNITED LINE-UP
Steffen Krause; Mo Conde, Rob Sagel, Kai Fernandes, Austin Maloney; Uros Antic (Mac Curran 65'), Aaron Molloy, Rayane Boukemia (Reece Weldon 81'); Ismael Noumansana (Gilbert Waso 62'), Frantzdy Pierrot (Omar Guzman 89'), Pierre Reedy
UNUSED SUBS: Ben Beaury