LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- When you're playing a team for a fifth time, like Louisville City FC is against St. Louis FC on Saturday, it's hard to come up with surprises.
"I don't know that we have any more things to throw at them," Lou City head coach John Hackworth said. "I've never played a team five times in one season ... so we've seen everything we have to give right now, and we're just going to have to play this straight up."
"It's a good and a bad thing," midfielder Napo Matsoso added. "We know each other pretty well. We know what St. Louis is capable of. They already beat us one time at home this year, so we can't take anything for granted."
Louisville City has gone 2-1-1 against St. Louis FC this season. The Boys in Purple are riding a 12-game unbeaten streak into the conference semifinal, bidding for a sixth conference final appearance in the club's sixth year of existence.
Hackworth's club is a veteran crew that knows what is needed to survive and advance during the postseason. Lou City is two wins away from a fourth straight trip to the USL Cup Final and a chance at a third overall championship.
"Throughout this team, so many guys have been there in critical moments and important games," midfielder Corben Bone said. "It's a credit to the group that they know how to respond and react in those moments, and it's great to be a part of."
"They feel that this is the time of year when we ramp it up a bit and this is the time of year when (we use) our experience and belief and everything we have to do," Hackworth said. "What do we have to do to get through this next game? It's awful nice to have a group of men that feel that way. You can sense it from their confidence, but it's not a cockiness."
The conference semifinal will kick off at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Lynn Family Stadium.
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