Lancaster Stars as LouCity Cruz Past FC Tulsa
Veteran striker Cameron Lancaster turned back the clock with a vintage performance Friday night to lead Louisville City FC to a convincing 3-0 road victory over FC Tulsa.
Lancaster scored a goal and added an assist, boosting his career tally to 78 goals, third-most in USL Championship history. The Englishman was a constant threat in the final third, helping LouCity record their first back-to-back league wins this season.
“It was much-needed for me and the team,” said Lancaster. “It’s been a tough year and a half, so I’m happy to contribute with a goal, assist and most importantly, the three points.”
The rout also saw 19-year-old goalkeeper Oliver Semmle earn a record-setting 11th shutout of the campaign. His clean sheet surpassed the previous league rookie mark, underscoring the defensive stability that has LouCity right back in the playoff hunt.
LouCity controlled the match despite ceding most of the possession, a trend they’ve embraced since shifting to a three-back system. The new shape has allowed wingbacks Oscar Jimenez and Amadou Dia to push higher upfield.
Sean Totsch smashed home the opener in the 31st minute off a driven cross from Lancaster. Elijah Wynder then recorded his first career assist in the 58th, helping Lancaster double the advantage with a close-range finish.
Wilson Harris sealed the result after coming on for Lancaster, scoring in the 80th minute on a counterattack to mark his return from injury. LouCity avenged a May loss to Tulsa and now sits just 6 points off the Eastern Conference’s best record with 12 games remaining.
“This was a good, solid performance,” said coach Danny Cruz. “But we need to make sure we build on it.”
With veterans like Lancaster finding top form and the tactics clicking, Louisville City seems to be peaking at the perfect time to make a push up the table. Their steady tactical evolution is aimed squarely at being a postseason force. LouCity is currently solidly in fourth place, four points clear of fifth (Memphis 901) and only three points back of third (Tampa Bay) while also only four back of second (Charleston Battery).
I am still not ready to say officially that LouCity is back and ready for a title run. However, if they can keep winning and keep climbing the table, they just might be.
The boys in purple will look to continue their rise up the standings Wednesday night when they host the Charleston Battery at Lynn Family Stadium.
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Photo courtesy of FC Tulsa