RECAP: SCR ALTACH 1–0 FC GRATKORN
Michigan native Josh Gatt earns his first start and full ninety since signing with the Austrian club this summer.
SCR Altach 1 – FC Gratkorn 0
Altach maintained their pressure on the league leaders FC Admira with a win at home on Friday thanks to an early strike from Daniel Schütz.
Plymouth, Michigan native Josh Gatt earned his first start in his fifth apperance in league action and went the distance for the Vorarlbergers.
Altach nearly found the back of the net in the opening minutes when Schütz airmailed from the right side into the box for Tomi. Unfortunately for the Spaniard, his header from three yards out caromed left of the far post.
Holders of the eighth spot in the standings, Gratkorn were not going down without a fight and nearly took the lead in the 13th minute. After a run down the right side, striker Phillip Vorraber found his partner up top Georges Panagiotopoulos streaming into the box for a strike that smacked the crossbar of Martin Kobras' net.
The hosts got their goal in the 16th minute courtesy of Schütz. Gatt started the play, catching up with a long feed at the touchline, returning and finding Matthias Hopfer in the midfield. Hopfer would then relay over to Tomi at the top of the box. The Spaniard did well to shake off defender Marco Perchtold and pass over to Schütz on his right, who calmly struck from 20 yards out past Matthias Götzinger for his third of the season.
The Black and Golds could have doubled their advantage at the half hour mark after a splended feed from Tomi ahead for Schütz streaming down behind the Gratkorn defense. The Austrian tested Götzinger but the Gratkorn netminder got a foot on the strike, and Harald Unverdorben's follow-up sailed over the bar.
Gatt made sure to impress coach Adi Hütter in the 40th minute with a fine drive down the left side past two defenders and into the box for a strike that took a deflection and beamed just wide of the far post.
Gratkorn hit the crossbar again in the 48th minute after Dubravko Tesevic's free kick from just outside the right edge of the box took a Matthias Sereinig header and deflected off the crossbar
Rainy conditions plagued both teams with several missed scoring opportunities. Altach nearly orchestrated a second goal in the 52nd minute after Tomi headed from within the box over for Unverdorben, who caught up with the ball from 15 yards out, spun, and shot over the bar.
Altach mainained the advantage throughout the second half, but Götzinger kept the score at 1-0. After coming in for Unverdorben in the 75th minute, Orhan Ademi tested the Gratkorn keeper after Schütz streamed through the midfield on the break and found the Swissman for a try. Götzinger did well to get a toe on the loose ball and pounce on it.
The hosts held on for the win, bringing their season point total to 32, still six behind FC Admira. Next Friday, the Black and Golds drive the six miles to Lustenau for a Vorarlberg derby.