Birmingham Legion FC played to a 0-0 draw Saturday night on the road against North Carolina FC at Wakemed Soccer Park.
The match was highlighted by excellent goalie play from both teams; Birmingham’s Trevor Spangenberg, who continues to play in place of injured starter Matt Von Oekel, had three saves from North Carolina’s on-target shots.
North Carolina led Birmingham in on-target (4 to 3) and total shots (17 to 10), while also leading in time of possession (58 percent to 42 percent) and passes (429 to 314). Legion FC still emerged with a crucial draw on the road and a 3-3-4 record on the young United Soccer League Championship season.
Birmingham also has a 1-0 record in U.S. Open Cup matches, after a 4-1 win this past Wednesday over West Chester United FC at home.
Legion FC got some early chances in the match, including a wide cross attempt from Edward Opoku in the fifth minute and an attempted shot in the 11th minute from Brian Wright.
The second half saw quality play from players off the bench, as head coach Tom Soehne brought in Razak Cromwell to replace Prosper Kasim for his first USL Championship action of his career and then subbed in JJ Williams in place of Opoku.
Both Cromwell and Williams had scoring opportunities in the half.
Williams’ shot on target in the 68th minute was especially impressive, coming in hard from outside the box. The North Carolina goalkeeper’s leaping block kept Legion FC off the scoreboard.
Spangenberg had his own set of impressive plays from the goal Saturday night, including his block from point-blank range in the 31st minute:
The draw moved North Carolina FC’s record to 4-4-2.
Legion FC continues its season on Wednesday, May 22, at home against Nashville SC at BBVA Compass Field. (See the team’s full schedule here.)