Detroit City FC advanced to the NPSL Midwest Region Final by defeating Minneapolis City SC, 2-0, Friday Night, with 4,460 City supporters looking on from the terraces of historic Keyworth Stadium.
Man of the Match honors went home with Tendai Jirira for an all-around performance. The winger made plays up and down the left flank all night, both offensively and defensively. It was an impressive shift he turned in, one well deserving of recognition.
In the 22nd minute, DCFC’s all-time leading scorer, Shawn Lawson, tallied first. It was a quick-strike, tic-tac-toe passing clinic that set up the goal. From Max Todd to Danny Deakin to Bakie Goodman, over to Lawson who tapped it in. All in about three seconds, 1-0.
City carried play throughout, always remaining the more dangerous side, though they did have to work hard for their chances – not many of which were clear and obvious.
The exhale came in the 79th minute. Todd drew a penalty, forcing a Minneapolis defender to play a cross in the box with his arm. Then, Todd stepped to the spot and blasted his try past the Minneapolis keeper to make it 2-0. The remainder of the match was little more than escorting the result to the final whistle.
The defense stood tall, as they normally do, parrying away the opportunities Minneapolis were able to create. The centerback triumvirate of Stephen Carroll, Jalen Crisler, and Moussa Gueye were just as splendid as we’ve come to expect. They made life easy on goalkeeper Hunter Morse, who pitched yet another shutout. Le Rouge are now unbeaten over their past 13 competitive NPSL matches.
Kickoff was delayed by an hour due to the other semifinal, between Cleveland SC and Rochester Lancers, not only falling into a weather delay but also going into extra time. It took 120 minutes of play, but Cleveland emerged victorious 6-4. The late start made no difference to City supporters or players. It only cranked up the intensity inside Keyworth.
The Boys in Rouge go again Sunday afternoon, in the Midwest Region Final, against Cleveland SC. Kickoff is slated for 1 PM. Tickets for the match are $12 online. Come and get yours now.
Detroit City FC Starting XI: #0 Hunter Morse, #5 Stephen Carroll, #8 Bakie Goodman, #9 Shawn Lawson (#21 Tommy Buono, 83’), #11 Max Todd, #12 Tendai Jirira, #14 Abdoulaye Diop (#3 Michael Pimlott, 62’), #15 Jalen Crisler, #17 Moussa Gueye (#4 Seb Harris, 86’), #27 Will Perkins (#10 Cyrus Saydee, 56’), #30 Danny Deakin (#99 George Chomakov, 90+’)
Goals: #9 Lawson, 22’ (from Goodman); #11 Todd, 79’ (penalty)
Cards: #14 Diop, 51’ (Yellow)