Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Fast Start Keys STLFC's Fourth Consecutive Win

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Fast Start Keys STLFC's Fourth Consecutive Win

Article excerpt

St. Louis FC's Corey Hertzog took a chance and it paid off with another early goal.

"I was trying to hide behind their defender, hoping they'd try to pass it back to their keeper and it actually worked the way I wanted," Hertzog said after scoring in the fourth minute of STLFC's 2-1 win over Sacramento Republic FC before 3,127 Wednesday night at Soccer Park in Fenton. "It was a little surprising, but as soon as I got it on my foot, I just knew to go far post."

The home team followed up with a Kyle Greig goal in the seventh minute and held off a furious late push from Sacramento to post its franchise-record fourth consecutive victory. With the three points, STLFC (9-6-8) moves past Swope Park of Kansas City and into eighth place in the United Soccer League's Western Conference. The top eight teams in each conference will qualify for the playoffs.

"It's a good feeling, but now we have to take this to Fresno on Saturday and hopefully make it five wins in a row," Hertzog said.

It was the third early goal during a three-game homestand for STLFC, which scored three minutes into a 2-0 win over Seattle 2 on Aug. 4 and in the fourth minute of a 4-1 rout of Las Vegas last Saturday.

"We do put a large emphasis on making sure that mentally they're right from the first whistle, to start fast," STLFC coach Anthony Pulis said. But "I don't think I've ever experienced anything like this, where a team has scored so many early goals."

Two minutes after Hertzog's early strike, STLFC added to its lead as Greig picked up his team-leading 10th goal of the season. After working a short corner with Kadeem Dacres, Lewis Hilton played the ball to the box for Greig, who flicked in a header as he made a perfectly timed near-post run.

Greig has scored four times during STLFC's current 4-0-1 unbeaten streak.

"I just think it's our energy right now," Hertzog said of the team's quick starts. …

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