FRISCO, Texas – Following the 1-0 win over El Paso Locomotive Saturday, North Texas SC faced off against FC Tulsa on Tuesday afternoon, ultimately falling 3-1 in windy conditions.
“This was a good test for us,” head coach Eric Quill said postgame. “To be honest, I thought Tulsa wanted it more than we did, so credit to them for coming in here with a great mentality. I was disappointed that we went up 1-0 and kind of let our foot off the gas.”
For North Texas, Tuesday’s lineup saw a mix of FC Dallas guys shift into the lineup. The starting 11 included Carlos Avilez, Eddie Munjoma, Nkosi Burgess, Alisson dos Santos Correa, Derek Waldeck, Juan Manuel Alvarez, Gibran Rayo, David Rodriguez, Anders Engebretsen, Dante Sealy and Alex Bruce.
It was Sealy who grabbed the first goal of the match. The winger slotted his close-range effort into the bottom right corner to give North Texas the early lead after 16 minutes. While FC Tulsa responded with three unanswered goals to grab a well-earned victory, Quill believes his team displayed plenty of solid interchanges, headlined by the goal.
16’ GOOOAAAALLLL!!— 🏆 - North Texas SC (@northtexasSC) February 25, 2020
Dante Sealy opens the scoring with a cool finish into the bottom corner from the left side of the box!
1-0 to the good guys. pic.twitter.com/01pf9lRVfJ
“We had some good spells of possession and we looked the part in certain areas of the field,” he said. “We did have some quality chances, but I didn’t think we threatened them in behind enough. We did not have [enough] guys going vertical and in behind Alex Bruce.”
In the second half, a number of subs came on around the 60-minute mark, including Pedro Conceição, Philip Ponder, Imanol Almaguer, Oscar Romero, Ronaldo Damus and a handful of Academy players and trialists.
Romero conjured up the best chance of the second half, drawing a good save out of the Tulsa keeper with a well-struck effort from the edge of the 18, but the team could not find another goal of its own.
Compared the Saturday’s match, Tuesday’s game saw a much more physical battle take place on the pitch. While the youthful North Texas side struggled to cope with the pressure at times, the learning lesson is a priceless one.
“I thought it was good for us,” Quill said. “Because when our young players and guys that are slight in body take too many touches, players that are 30 or 40 pounds [heavier] with agility and mobility are going to overpower our young players. I thought we didn’t play quick enough and we allowed them into our bodies. We allowed their physicality to have a presence.”
Next up for the team, outside of the usual training schedule, is another preseason match against Sporting Kansas City II on Thursday at 2 PM.