Midfielder Faysal Bettache recorded the first hat-trick in club history
St Louis CITY2 earned points for a seventh consecutive match with a 3-1 road victory over Houston Dynamo 2 at SaberCats Stadium on Sunday, September 3. Midfielder Faysal Bettache gave the visitors the first two goals of the match. Dynamo Dos’ Papa Ndoye brought the home side closer shortly before halftime, but Bettache answered only a few seconds into the second frame to notch a hat-trick and seal the victory.
CITY2 got off to a fast start, opening the scoring in the 10th minute. After stealing the ball from a Houston defender, midfielder Célio Pompeu raced unguarded into the box before dropping off a pass to Bettache, who finished the impressive sequence with a goal. In the 27th minute, Pompeu and Bettache linked up once again to strengthen CITY2’s advantage, with Pompeu displaying some beautiful skill to dribble around a Dynamo Dos defender before feeding Bettache for a strike.
Houston pressured the visitors in the 36th minute, finding a seam down the middle of the field and threading the ball to an attacker making a run into the box, but goalkeeper Michael Creek reacted quickly and batted the shot away. The home side reduced their deficit just a few minutes later, though, when forward Papa Ndoye blasted a ball off the crossbar and into the goal.
But CITY2 responded less than a minute out of halftime. Off a pass from midfielder John Klein, Bettache rocketed a left-footed shot from outside the box through traffic and into the goal’s top-left corner.
In the 67th minute, Houston worked the ball into the visitors’ box and tried to find an opening for a shot, but CITY2 defenders clogged the shooting lanes and blocked the eventual shot out of the way.
It was all CITY2 from that point on. With the 3-1 victory, CITY2 is now unbeaten over its last seven matches (five wins, two draws) and has scored two or more goals in each of their last six matches. The seven-match unbeaten run ties the longest streak in CITY2 history, which was set by the team during its inaugural campaign in 2022.
CITY2 continues their road trip with a match against Vancouver Whitecaps 2 on Saturday, September 9, at 9:00 p.m. CT.
Michael Creek, Nolan McGuire, Michael Wentzel ©, Selmir Pidro, Ezra Armstrong, AJ Palazzolo (Sergio Rivas 46’), Max Schneider, John Klein (Aaron Heard 89’), Célio Pompeu (Wan Kuzain 62’), Faysal Bettache (Dida Armstrong 74’), Caden Glover (Mykhi Joyner 74’)
SUBSTITUTES NOT USED:
Christian Olivares, Ryley Gibbs, Josh Maher, Larsen Hackworth