FRISCO - North Texas SC continued a promising start to the USL League One season with a late win against Forward Madison FC on Saturday night at Toyota Stadium. With two wins in as many games, North Texas is the last remaining team in League One with a perfect record.
Although North Texas waited until the final minute of the match to find the scoresheet, courtesy of a Ricardo Pepi penalty in the last minute of the game, head coach Eric Quill was pleased with his team’s overall performance.
“Considering the conditions of the day - windy, rainy, field slick - I thought we started out the game really well and possessed the ball really well,” he said after the game. “For the majority of the game I was happy with our performance, we just didn’t have a goal to show for it until the end. All in all, I’m pretty happy.”
The win and three points propelled North Texas into third place in the table despite having played fewer games than any of its League One rivals. While it’s still very early in the season, Eric Quill and his team can be proud of their fast start.
“It feels great,” Quill said. “This is the start you want when you have two home games, you want to take advantage of being at home. We were very fortunate to get the three points tonight, considering how late it (the goal) was. That game had that feel where maybe it was going to be a draw, but (Ricardo) Pepi is a goal-scorer, so I felt really good about him taking the penalty kick.”
Quill wasn’t the only one who felt good about Ricado Pepi stepping up the penalty spot in the 95th minute. The 16-year-old striker relished the opportunity to win the game for his team.
“I wanted to take it (the penalty),” Pepi said. “I always wanted to score the goal and be the hero of the game. I was very confident I was going to score the goal.”
Pepi’s palpable self-confidence is not misplaced. No player in League One has started the season as brightly as the U.S. Men’s youth international, who currently sits on top of the scoring charts with four goals in two games—twice as many as anyone else in the league.
“It’s been a good start to the season,” Pepi said. “Four goals in two games—it’s pretty good—but I’m not content. I still want more goals for the team and for myself.”