CHARLOTTE — The Independence leveled their season series with Charleston in a 2-1 victory on their first night at Ramblewood Soccer Complex on Saturday.
The pivotal play came just seconds after Charlotte appealed for a penalty kick after claiming a handball by Charleston in their area. After recovering possession, the home side got the ball to captain and second-half sub Jorge Herrera. His pass to Tomasz Zahorski was spot-on in the six-yard box, but both the 30-year-old striker and Kevin Corby lost their footing simultaneously, falling to the ground. As Corby scrambled to recover, Zahorski kicked the ball just hard enough to get it over the line for the match winner.
Charleston mounted one more threat, but substitute Maikel Chang’s shot from the left wound up wide of the far post at the end of stoppage.
It ended the Battery’s string of five USL matches without a loss.
The defeat dropped Charleston (6-2-6) into third place in the East after Richmond’s (6-2-7) home date with Wilmington ended in a scoreless weather-shortened draw.
Both squads opened Saturday’s contest with rotational units. The Jacks began with Herrera on the bench. Charleston opened with defender Forrest Lasso and midfielder Memo Rodriguez in spots usually reserved for Taylor Mueller and Ricky Garbanzo, and star fullback/midfielder Quinton Griffith returned to the Battery lineup for the first time since April, starting in the left mid spot usually reserved for Chang.
Charleston scored in the 53rd minute on a goal by Jarad van Schaik. The Battery have now scored one goal in each of their last six league games.