Will Linder scored in the sixth minute of added time as Saint Louis Club Atletico upset FC Wichita on Saturday night as FC Wichita was handed their first conference loss in over a year. Saint Louis topped FC Wichita 2-1.
FC Wichita falls to 7-1-0 on the season. They’re stuck at 21 points (2.623 points per match). Even with the loss, FC Wichita remains fourth in the NPSL Power rankings. The power rankings determine who hosts playoff rounds as teams get into the region playoffs and onto the national semi-finals and finals.
It appeared to be a glorious day as Teylor Cubero tipped one over the head of a charging keeper in the 11th minute. The belated birthday present for Cubero saw the possession dominating FC Wichita get reward with the early 1-0 lead.
Saint Louis scored on a corner in the box in the 27th minute. It was cleared poorly by FC Wichita, which led to a strike that nothing could be done on. A class of a goal by Eric Lopez, leveling the match at 1-1.
FC Wichita had plenty of chances throughout the tied match. A lot of free kicks just outside the 18 but time and time again, Saint Louis came up with a deflection or FC Wichita would miss just wide or high.
Things got weird in the 68th minute. Andres Ochoa picked up his first ever red card with an altercation with a member of Saint Louis Club Atletico. FC Wichita was forced to play the rest of the match with only 10 men.
Despite only playing with 10 men, FC Wichita would continue their attack, taking corners and free kicks. The idea of being down a man and you cannot attack doesn’t exist to this FC Wichita club. It’s the fourth time this season they’ve played down a man (2 NPSL, 2 USOC).
Once again, it was a free kick that left FC Wichita stunned. Will Linder of Saint Louis hit a nice shot in the third minute of added time, putting Saint Louis up 2-1 with only minutes remaining.
A free kick in the sixth minute of added time gave FC Wichita a final grasp. However, a missed step beyond the 10-yard restriction line was missed and the kick was saved by the Saint Louis Club Atletico new keeper.
It’s the first time FC Wichita has lost since June 17, 2017 in the Heartland Conference. Since that loss over a year ago, FC Wichita had won 12 consecutive regular season conference matches. In all NPSL matches, FC Wichita has accumulated a 14-1-0 record. FC Wichita is 17-3-0 including Open Cup and Friendlies. Since the start of 2017 season, FC Wichita is 21-4-1 overall.
FC Wichita will now travel to Little Rock, Arkansas to play the Rangers in a conference showdown. FC Wichita women will play at 5 p.m. and the men will play at 7 p.m.