Greenville, SC - The Greenville Triumph Soccer Club hosts their final home match of the 2021 regular season as they welcome the second-place Chattanooga Red Wolves to town for Fan Appreciation Night this Saturday night, October 16th, at 7:00 PM, presented by State Farm Insurance.
Second Place: Make no mistake about it - this is the most important match of the season for both clubs. They head in to Saturday's match holding second and third place in the standings, separated by only two points (CHA 43, GVL 41). With only two matches remaining, a victory by either side would be critical to playoff seeding. A Triumph win would move them in to second, and they'd just need to beat last-place NCFC on October 30 to secure a first-round bye in the playoffs. For Chattanooga, a win would likely lock them in to one of the top two seeds, and keep the pressure on Omaha to win their last two after a surprise home defeat to Madison on Wednesday night.
Midfield Minutes: Greenville's midfielders have been crucial to the club's resurgence in the final third of the season, highlighted by Aaron Walker's elite play in the month of September. With their recent form, it can be easy to forget that the club has played the balance of this season without one of their best players from 2020 - all-league first team midfielder Noah Pilato.
John Harkes knows the minutes are adding up quickly for his midfield trio of Aaron Walker, Max Hemmings and Andrew Booth, as he's tried to find spots to rest players during the stretch run. The table has complicated that, but Harkes was able to rest Andrew Booth last week against New England. Max Hemmings will get rest this weekend too, though not by choice - Hemmings must serve a one-match suspension for yellow card accumulation throughout the season.
Reinforcements might arrive this weekend as well, with Pilato completing his first full week of training as he returns from his back injury. If he's included in the 18-man roster for Saturday, Pilato might be able to gain some valuable minutes ahead of the playoffs.
Midfielder Noah Pilato had his first full week of training as he continues his return from a back injury.
Allen Gavilanes was named to USL League One's Team of the Week after scoring his first professional goal in the club's 1-0 victory over New England last Saturday.
Injury Report: JJ Donnelly (F): Out for season, Aaron Walker (M): Probable, Noah Pilato (M): Probable
League One Standings: Greenville's sits in third place with 41 points, trailing Chattanooga by only two.
The Greenville Triumph Soccer Club travels to Raleigh to face North Carolina FC for their final match of the 2021 regular season on Saturday, October 30th at 7:00 PM. The match can be seen on ESPN+.