As the NPSL season has kicked into full gear in the North Conference, Med City FC welcomed rivals Duluth FC to Rochester on Wednesday night. The two teams know each other well after a pair of tight games last season. They battled to a 1-1 draw in Duluth last season, while Duluth FC later claimed all three points with a winner deep into stoppage time toward the end of the 2017 season.
Both teams would battle it out in the midfield for most of the first half. Duluth came out physical, putting pressure on Med City players on the ball. Neither goalkeeper had much to do aside from a Duluth FC shot that ringed off the post and was cleared by the Mayhem late in the opening 45 minutes.
As the second half began, Med City FC took more control of the ball, while upping the pressure on the Duluth FC backline. Early in the second half, a Francisco Neto (Rio de Janerio, Brazil) free kick found its way to Teirnan Talbot (Rochester, Minnesota) but after a scramble in front of goal the ball ended up going out for a goal kick. At the 70 minute mark, Med City FC midfielder Niklas Roessler (Stuttgart, Germany) took the ball and made a mazy run through the midfield, then found Neto, who was racing down the left side of the field. After some fancy footwork, Neto sent a cross into the box, finding the foot of Med City FC forward Claudio Repetto (Genova, Italy). Unfortunately, Repetto hit the shot over the goal.
As the game entered the final few minutes, Duluth tightened up their defense as they looked content to snatch a point on the road. A flurry of Med City FC corners in stoppage time were all repelled by the Duluth defense. At the final whistle, Med City and Duluth FC took a point each with a 0-0 draw. It was a tight game the entire time, with possession, shots on goal, saves and corners almost identical. Duluth will head home and welcome the Crows of Minneapolis City to town over the weekend. Meanwhile the Mayhem will play host to Thunder FC of Sioux Falls, SD next Wednesday.
Contributor: Taylor Hoth/Med City FC
Photo Credit: Ryan Kotajarvi/Med City FC