The Harrisburg City Islanders face a quick turnaround after their U.S. Open Cup match when they head to North Carolina to take on the Charlotte Independence on Saturday, June 17 at Sportsplex at Matthews! The Charlotte-Harrisburg match-up will be the first to take place at the new stadium, which has sold out for its opening night.
Harrisburg and Charlotte will face off for the first time this season with the two teams both in need of collecting points to keep up with the top half of the league.
The Islanders are currently winless in their last six matches and sit six points out of the top half of the league, while Charlotte is just three points clear of the Islanders with 13 points.
A win would help the Islanders stay within striking distance of a playoff spot as they inch their way closer to the midway point of the season. Harrisburg has games in hand as well that will aide in making up points down the stretch.
With the Islanders scoring woes continue to increase in league play, the team will need to look to their forwards once again to create offensive chances.
With Cardel Benbow still out with an injury, Paul Wilson needs to use his speed and skill to keep the pressure on the opposing defense to create scoring chances. Emerging players like Jonny Mendoza, who scored in the Islanders final Open Cup match, will also play a large role in keeping the Harrisburg side in an attacking mode.
Starting goalie Brandon Miller has been out until he was the backup in the last Open Cup match. Sean Lewis has gotten the last four starts in net and could be in the lineup once again on Saturday.
Charlotte comes into the Eastern Conference battle looking for their first win in three games after winning three of their previous four and scoring a lot in the process.
The Independence managed eight goals in the two games before their recent winless skid, which includes two draws. In those high scoring games, the Independence got scoring from five different players; David Estrada, Enzo Martinez, and Jorge Herrera all tallied a goal in back to back games helping the offensive outburst.
Following the match against Charlotte Harrisburg will head back home for two matches at FNB Field in the same week.
Bethlehem Steel FC comes to town on Tuesday, June 20 (7 p.m.) to face the Islanders in their last matchup of the season. Tuesday is also Literacy Night and Father’s Night on City Island!
Lousiville City FC makes their way to City Island on Saturday, June 24 (7 p.m.) for the teams first meeting of the season. Come out as the Islanders GO Pink in partnership with Feel Your Boobies for breast cancer awareness! The Islanders will dawn special pink jerseys that will be auctioned off after the game.