Med City FC kicked off their inaugural season against LC Aris FC on a beautiful Saturday night to more than 1,200 fans at Rochester Regional Stadium.
Excitement and anticipation filled the air as the Med City starting 11, led by club captain Midhat Mujic (Rochester, Minnesota), walked onto the pitch hand-in-hand with local Rochester youth soccer players.
The match got off to a quick start with a defensive miscue by a Med City defender leading to a breakaway by LC Aris, but Med City goalkeeper Nate Levy (Rochester, Minnesota) came up with a fantastic save to keep the opposing team off the scoresheet.
In the 12th minute, Med City was able to overcome some early nerves and scored the first goal in club history by midfielder Thilo Wilke (Wuerzburg, Germany), who finished off an excellent play assisted by Tiernan Talbot (Rochester, Minnesota).
Med City continued to pressure LC Aris firing multiple shots on goal, only to have them stopped by LC Aris goalkeeper Seth Lewison. They finally broke through for the second goal just before the halftime whistle as a cross from Matias Pazos (Madrid, Spain) found the head of striker Dion Dozzell (Ipswich, England).
Med City entered halftime with a 2-0 advantage.
The half time talk by Luke Corey, Med City head coach, must have been inspiring because the players burst out of the gate maintaining majority of possession in the LC Aris half. A string of excellent passing resulted in a cross by wingback Javier Gomez (Madrid, Spain) that was inadvertently knocked into the net by an LC Aris defender for an own goal during the 51st minute.
LC Aris attempted to attack the Med City half, but were quickly met by their strong defensive line, led by center backs Jared Wolt (Farmington, Minnesota) and Mark Habeck (Winona, Minnesota). LC Aris were able to manage a few long range shots, but they were easily handled by substitute goalkeeper J.C. Perez Castro (Barcelona, Spain).
Both teams made multiple substitutions in the second half, with Med City continuing to maintain possession and create scoring opportunities. They finished off an excellent game by scoring their fourth goal, a cross by James Larson (Polson, Montana) that was volleyed into the lower corner by Thilo Wilke for his second goal of the game.
Med City FC clinched their season opener at home with a decisive 4-0 win over LC Aris. Thilo Wilke was named Man of the Match for his brace.
“It was fantastic win,” says Luke Corey, head coach of Med City FC. “We definitely had the first half jitters, but were able to calm down and execute the game plan in the second half. Having the backing of all of the fans who attended the game certainly gave our players that extra boost of energy.”