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Sunday column: Riverhounds’ debut a thing of beauty

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media


The Sunday column attempts to describe an unforgettable night at Pittsburgh’s newest stadium, as well as some of the emotion that comes with the world’s game. My deep thanks to the Riverhounds for hospitality, notably CEO Jason Kutney, coach Justin Evans and forward Jhonny Arteaga, seen in the vid that’s attached to column file.

This will be fun for many years to come.

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and more, including his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the top four columnists in the country -- highest circulation category -- by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the top three columnists in the country by the National Headliners Awards. For 2013, he was named top columnist in the state by the Keystone Awards and second-place by the Pennsylvania AP Managing Editors.


  1. It’s been built. Let them come. Another cool venue and feature has been added to the city of Pittsburgh.

  2. Riverhounds’ new stadium debut
    Frozen Four Championship Game at Consol Energy Center
    Pirates at PNC Park vs the Reds

    All in one night – sure is a lot going on in Pittsburgh these days. Pretty cool.

    DK: And all you left out was the one game that the most people watched.

  3. While I have never been a fan of soccer (just isn’t my thing), I have read both of your Riverhounds columns, and I can honestly say I’m rooting for this team to succeed in every way possible.

    I like and admire the “think big” attitude of their CEO, and I truly hope his efforts along with the efforts of everyone else associated with this franchise lead to something really big.

    Your paragraph that reads, “But all life forms begin microscopically, all having a one-in-a-million shot to grow into something great. And if you had to start somewhere in Pittsburgh, you couldn’t have dreamed up a more powerful setting than this.” Really captures how big a moment for soccer in Pittsburgh this just might be.

    As always DK, great job!

    DK: Thanks. Enjoyed this like a kid. Wonderful experience.

  4. Some Pittsburgh soccer history:

    The Phantoms played at Forbes Field in 1967, and were at least as meaningful as the Riverhounds are now. The NPSL, which was one of two leagues that formed the NASL the next year, even had some games on CBS. The Phantoms were an awful team and franchise, though, and folded long before realizing their dream of playing at the new North Side stadium.

    In 2001, the Riverhounds did play an international opponent at Bethel Park:

    (Bernd Schneider was on Germany’s World Cup finalists the next year, and Frankie Hejduk was on the US National team.)

    The Hounds also beat MLS’ Colorado Rapids in a US Open Cup game that year:

    I had forgotten that MISL legend Kai Haaskivi once coached the Riverhounds.

    DK: Outstanding stuff, JW. Thank you.

  5. Pirates beat Cueto, and it was on TV here, is quite enough for me! I’ve lived long enough to see Travis Snider and Clint Barmes hit back to back singles.

    Color me satisfied.

  6. Welcome back, Dejan! What a cool article. It almost makes me want to attend a game (I’m not a soccer fan). Another feather in the Pittsburgh sports cap, obviously. I wish the Riverhounds organization nothing but the best!

    DK: Glad you liked it!

  7. Welcome back, Dejan.

    How was Manitoba?

  8. Soooo . . . how ’bout them Buccos?

  9. If you see it, it will most likely grow…to have nearly all of the stadiums in view as you come into downtown is the start of a great plan. Great read, DK…thanks for getting it out there.

    DK: My treat!

  10. Great article and great picture from the field. Like a lot of folks on here have never been a soccer fan but as a dad have had it force fed to me and have a growing appreciation. Nothing better than seeing an 8 yr old dive to make a stop as they are whistling the end of the game and all her friends mobbing her, like I saw yesterday at my daughter’s game. The only ones more excited than the girls were us parents on the sideline… If you haven’t given soccer a chance yet, this looks like a great venue to try it out. I will next time in the Burgh.

  11. Watching MTV Movie Awards.

    Macklemore and Lewis better milk “Thrift Shop” for all it’s worth. Because they are going to have retire on it.

    Vanilla Ice, anyone?

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