Derrick Etienne Jr.: “It’s a big weight off my shoulders just to see the ball hit the back of the net.” (FrontRowSoccer.com Photo)
MONTCLAIR, N.J. — That big sigh of relief you might have heard from these parts Sunday came from one Derrick Etienne, Jr., who scored his first goal of the season.
Etienne, Jr., a member of the Red Bulls, was given an opportunity to get some playing time with the Red Bulls II and the 20-year-old Haitian international made the most out of his time.
He tallied late in the match to lift NYRBII to a 2-1 victory over the Charleston Battery in United Soccer League action Sunday.
“It’s a big weight off my shoulders just to see the ball hit the back of the net,” Etienne Jr. said. “It’s going to give me a lot more confidence and hopefully I’ll be able to convert the rest of the chances I’m able to create.”
Etienne, Jr. scored off a free kick in the 75th minute. He and Vincent Bezecourt have taken turns at those type of set pieces and told him that “you can either shoot this or cross it so I’m like I’m definitely shooting it.”
“You know, we have an understanding,” he said. “We’re comfortable with anyone taking them so I was just happy I was able to step up and take one.”
The Red Bulls II needed that win as well as it broke a three-game losing streak in the United Soccer League.
“Our mentality coming off back-to-back losses was we didn’t want to lose another game at home, definitely,” Etienne Jr. said. “It was a little bit extra knowing they are top of the east so I think we came out here looking for a battle and we focused a lot on counter-pressing and getting it corrected so I felt like it was a big part of our game. It kind of slipped away from us at times during the game but I felt like we were able to come back in and get the game back on our terms and I think that set-up how our goals went.”