New York Red Bulls II moved back into a playoff spot with a 4-0 win over FC Cincinnati on Saturday.
Manager John Wolyniec made four changes to the team that drew Charleston Battery. Rafael Diaz started in place of Evan Louro in goal. There were two changes in defense as David Najem moved to right back in place of Ethan Kutler while Noah Powder started on the left. Hassan Ndam and Jordan Scarlett were the center back pairing once again. Kazu Shigenobu started in the midfield in place of Dan Metzger while Andrew Tinari retained his spot. The front four had two changes as Zeiko Lewis and Junior Flemmings made their return to the starting line-up. Both Stefano Bonomo and Florian Valot retained their respective positions.
Today's Squad (4-2-3-1)#NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/0LDKotg3g2— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
The game started off fast with both teams having good chances to score early on. Valot was teed up from just outside the box, but his shot went just over the bar and Tinari tested Cincinnati keeper Mitch Hildebrandt from outside the box as well.
5' - Valot with the first chance for either side but his rip goes high!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
0-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
Cincinnati almost took the lead in the 10th minute after Djiby Fall found himself with a great chance, but Diaz was able to direct his shot onto the crossbar.
10' - The crossbar bails us out off a Djiby shot!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
0-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
NYRB II would continue to push forward and found themselves ahead in the 23rd minute. Powder made a driving run into in the box and earned a penalty which Bonomo stepped up and scored in his fourth consecutive game to give Wolyniec’s men the lead.
23' - @bonomo_93 buries the PK to give @NYRBII the 1-0 lead!#NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/G5sJvOFAi2— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
Bonomo said that there hasn’t been a key to his scoring run.
Nothing really, as a striker, for me I'm just playing every game in the same way going into it, doing my role, doing what the coach tells me and if a goal comes, a goal comes fortunately in the past four games they've come. It's been a good run so far, got to keep it up."
NYRB II continued to control the game and Lewis nearly put them ahead in the 39th minute by two but Hildebrandt made a good save to deny the midfielder.
39' - Lewis catches Mitch off his line and nearly doubles the @NYRBII lead!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
1-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
NYRB II wouldn’t have to wait long to find another as they doubled their advantage just two minutes before halftime. After Valot won a free kick, Lewis’ cross found Ndam and the defender’s header gave NYRB II a 2-0 lead going into half.
42' - GOALLLLLLLLL @NYRBII!!!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
Ndam heads home his first of the year off a Tinari free kick!
2-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/Vy8qFbwVXC
Both teams came out with chances early in the second half and Cincinnati had a good chance as the substitute Jimmy McLaughlin broke free, but Ndam got back to block his shot.
53' - Ndam tracks back to stifle a 1v1 against McLaughlin!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
2-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
NYRB II continued to control the game and had two good chances to extend their lead. Powder’s cross just missed connecting with his teammates and Bonomo headed over a Lewis cross moments later.
62' - Chances abound for @NYRBII— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
First, a cross Powder barely slips through teammates then a Bonomo header is sent just over the bar!
Despite being in control, Wolyniec’s troops were reduced to 10 men in the 65th minute. After he had already picked a yellow Ndam was given a second in a span of two minutes for a hard challenge.
65' - Ndam earns his second yellow just minutes late on a hard tackle and is sent off.— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
2-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
Wolyniec decided to make a change to go more defensive as he sent on Tim Schmoll for Lewis.
67' - (1/3) sub coming for @NYRBII— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
2-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
FC Cincinnati had a good chance to score from the resulting set piece, but Diaz made a big stop to keep the score the same.
68' - Diaz coming up big again!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
2-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/4Vaw1bTRRx
Despite being down a man NYRB II would continue to push and found themselves up by three in the 73rd minute. Flemmings picked up the ball on the left and was able to cut inside and fire the ball past Hildebrandt.
TRIPLE THAT LEAD!@Flemmo_77 cuts inside and buries one past Mitch!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
3-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/mf66Nl08pY
Flemmings wouldn’t have to wait long to get his second and a minute later he had his brace. Shigenobu’s ball over the top found Flemmings onside and he was able to slot the ball home.
BRACEEEEEEE!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
Kazu services @Flemmo_77 yet again over the top and Junior bags his 7th of the year!
4-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/GgsK4xCrnC
Flemmings would have a chance for his hat trick late on but Hildebrandt made a diving stop to deny the midfielder.
86' - Flemmings going for the hat trick forcing another diving save from Hildebrandt!— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
4-0 #NYvCIN | #NYRBII
NYRB II would see the rest of the game out and a big three points.
FINAL: @NYRBII 4, @fccincinnati 0— NYRB II (@NYRBII) August 19, 2017
Highest scoring output of the season puts us level on points for 7th place!#NYvCIN | #NYRBII pic.twitter.com/XY9hQK5at2
Wolyniec was happy with how the team played and said it was one of the best performances of the season.
It's certainly one of our best performances, a complete performance. We did a lot on the offensive and defensive end. Limited a very good team to little in the attack so I feel pretty good, I feel like we're starting to gain some momentum, the last three results have been pretty good against good teams so we feel pretty good about that.
Wolyniec also praised Bonomo and Flemmings for their hard work and how they’ve found their footing in the team.
Yeah, it's interesting both those guys had some injuries through the off season and it's taken some time for them to get back, so of that is just bad luck and the fact that their injuries didn't heal in a way that they thought or we thought would happen and it took some time so credit to them, they've continued to work and I'm sure it threw them off early getting back to full fitness but you can see now Bonomo's becoming the player that we thought he could be. With him it's almost like the goals are just gravy on top because he does all the work that we ask in holding the ball, challenging, running and pressing and all that stuff. With Junior obviously, he's starting to round out his form and you could see that in the end of the game. It looked a lot like last year where we got up in games, we closed out games with extra goals because Junior could be really effective when the game got loose and he gets a few chances so it's good to see that from him today.
NYRB II would look to continue their unbeaten run when they travel to take on Ottawa Fury. The game will be on Sunday, August 27, at 2:00 pm.