FC Tucson got an early goal and kept a clean sheet to claim a narrow 1-0 home win over New England Revolution II on Wednesday night at Kino Sports Complex.
It took Tucson just eight minutes to break the deadlock, courtesy of an Elivelton header powered in at the back post from Charlie Dennis' corner kick delivery. Following the Brazilian's first goal of the season though, New England responded well. Revs II grew into the game in terms of possession and pressure for the remainder of the first half, but failed to find the net.
The second 45 minutes followed a similar pattern. FC Tucson controlled the opening exchanges, and the game became more balanced as the threat from New England increased with Revs II in search of an equalizer.
The sides began to trade chances, with New England's best arriving on 68 minutes. Connor Presley's ball from the right flank found Orlando Sinclair between Tucson defenders, but Sinclair poked the finish wide.
John Galas' Tucson team nearly put the game to bed twice late on. Substitute Manuel Ferriol showed a lovely feint to free himself but saw his curling shot nick the top of the bar as it went over, and moments later New England goalkeeper Joe Rice denied Azaad Liadi from close range.
The Arizona club would see out the clean sheet and the win, earning a much-needed three points to move up one position into eighth place. Clint Peay's New England side remains at the bottom of the table with the loss.
Both teams face a quick turnaround for road games on Saturday, with Tucson visiting North Texas SC and Revolution II heading to Nebraska to take on Union Omaha.
TUC (8'): Elivelton (first), assisted by Dennis
FC Tucson: September 19 v. North Texas SC (A)
New England Revolution II: September 19 v. Union Omaha (A)