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CFC edged by Carolina Core in second Battle of the Independents

Jalen James attempts a shot against Carolina Core FC

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (June 22, 2024) — Chattanooga FC faced off against rivals Carolina Core FC after an undefeated away stint for their first home game since June 1, and were edged 2-1 in front of nearly 4,000 supporters at Finley Stadium.

The Core started quickly, with their early pressing successful against Chattanooga. Facundo Canete received the ball inside the box and turned to finish in the bottom left corner, putting the visitors up 1-0 in the fourth minute.

In the 20th minute, Canete had a chance to double their lead from the spot, but CFC keeper Jean Antoine extended for a strong save to his left, keeping the game within reach.

In the 29th minute, Carolina found their equalizer after a long buildup, and Joshua Rodriguez tapped in the goal to go up 2-0.

Chattanooga had a number of chances themselves in the first half. In the 28th minute, Andres Jimenez Aranzazu had a driven shot from distance go just wide of the far post. In the 31st minute, Taylor Gray had a curling effort saved, keeping the score 2-0 Carolina at halftime.

Sporting Director and Head Coach Rod Underwood made three substitutions for the start of the second half with Jalen James, Milo Garvanian and Jesse Williams coming in for Minjae Kwak, Joseph Perez and Farid Sar-Sar respectively.

Most of CFC’s attacking threat came down the left flank with Gray creating a handful of chances early in the half.

Gray and Mehdi Ouamri had a neat exchange on the top of the penalty area in the 63rd minute, but Ouamri curled the resulting shot just wide of Alex Sutton’s post.

James scored his fifth goal on the season in the 76th minute with a fine piece of individual skill, cutting in from the right flank and finishing from 18 yards out with his left foot.

The goal ultimately proved to be a consolation on the evening as CFC fell to its first league defeat of the season at Finley.

"We talked about being better at getting to loose balls and second balls [during half-time]," said Underwood. "Jalen [James] was dangerous and got the goal. Jesse [Williams] and Milo [Garvanian] came in and gave us a little more stability. It just wasn't enough in the end."

The result sees CFC remain in second place in the Eastern Conference table with 28 points.

Chattanooga FC will return to Finley Stadium in Matchweek 16 with a Southeast Division match against Crown Legacy FC on Military Appreciation Night presented by Food City, complete with fireworks after the game, on Saturday, July 6th at 7:00 p.m. ET. Tickets are on sale now.


  • Jalen James scored his fifth goal of the season and is now tied with Jesus Ibarra in second for the club, with Mehdi Ouamri leading with six.
  • This was the second game the two sides have had at Finley Stadium this season, with CFC winning 2-0 the first time (April 27).
  • Minjae Kwak made his second start of the season after his return from injury.
GALLERY: Chattanooga FC vs Carolina Core FC (June 22, 2024)

Box Score:  

Chattanooga FC (6W-3L-6D, 4SOW, 28 pts. - 2nd in East)  - Carolina Core FC (2W-7L-3D, 2SOW, 11 pts. - 14th in East)

Finley Stadium | Chattanooga, Tenn.

Attendance: 3,867

Final score:

CFC: 1


Scoring summary:

4’: Canete - CCFC

29’: Rodriguez - CCFC

76': James - CFC

Stats (CFC/CCFC):
Possession: 55 % / 45 %
xG: 0.77 / 2.21 + pk
Shots: 12 / 11
Shots on goal: 5 / 4
Blocked shots: 3 / 3
Total passes: 404 / 309
Passing accuracy percentage: 87.9 / 81.2
Corners: 4 / 2
Total crosses: 5 / 1
Offsides: 7 / 2
Goalkeeper saves: 2 / 4
Clearances: 3 / 2
Fouls: 13 / 15


33’ - Caution: CFC - Prepelita

33’ - Caution: CCFC - Covi

35’- Caution: CFC - Kwak

36’ - Caution: CCFC - Lassiter (Coach)

39’ - Caution: CFC - McGrath

45’+2 - Caution: CFC - Arthur

57' - Caution: CCFC - Rodriguez

71' - Caution: CCFC - Canete

79' - Caution: CFC - Viafara

82' - Caution: CCFC - Diaz

90' - Second caution: CFC - Prepelita (dismissal)

90'+3 - Caution: CCFC - Evans

90'+7 - Caution: CCFC - Sutton


CFC starters: Jean Antoine, Farid Sar-Sar (Jesse Williams 46'), Anatolie Prepelita, Duvan Viafara, Joseph Perez (Milo Garvanian 46'), Jude Arthur (Carlos Rivas 86'), Alex McGrath (C), Andres Jimenez Aranzazu (Luis Garcia Sosa 70'), Taylor Gray, Minjae Kwak (Jalen James 46'), Mehdi Ouamri

Substitutes not used: Jonathan Burke, Robert Screen, Callum Watson, Ethan Koren

Head Coach: Rod Underwood

CCFC starters: Alex Sutton; Christian Diaz, Ibrahim Covi, Kai Thomas; Carlos Mario Diaz, Alenga Charles, Santiago Cambindo, Jathan Juarez; Jacob Evans (Jesus Orejuela 90'+3), Facundo Canete; Joshua Rodriguez (Yekeson Subah 68')

Substitutes not used: Robert Bailey, Tyler Freeman, Papa Ndoye, Aryeh Miller, Drake Hadeed, Luis Lugo, Jeremiah Jackson White IV

Head Coach: Roy Lassiter