Midland/Odessa FC saved its best overall performance on the pitch for last, as they defeated Tyler FC, 5-1 in their regular season finale on Friday night at Grande Communications Stadium.
“It was exactly what we wanted,” Midland-Odessa FC head coach Matt Barnes told reporters after the game. “I was hoping we could come out tonight and put a full game together — a full 90 — that’s the first time we’ve done it the entire season.”
With a spot in the Lone Star Conference playoffs already sewn up, the win gave MOFC a chance to win the conference, but after the results of Saturday’s matches, they will either host the Fort Worth Vaqueros on Wednesday or travel to face Dutch Lions FC.
Jamie O’Grady powered Midland-Odessa FC in the first half as his hat trick helped the team to a 3-1 lead going into halftime.
O’Grady’s first goal came in the 15th minute as he was able to get the ball off an errant shot from Ricardo Palomino in the box and slid in on the right side to tap it in for the goal.
The second score started off of a throw-in received by Alvaro Rubio, who then sent the ball into the box to Memo Diaz. Diaz then found O’Grady on a cross and he punched it in to make it 2-0 after 24 minutes.
Tyler FC’s only goal of the night came in the 27th minute as Derrick Krone found Tony Bravo for the score.
O’Grady completed the hat trick in the 30th minute as a low cross from Palomino came off of the turf and then off of O’Grady’s foot and into the goal to make it 3-1.
Midland-Odessa FC emptied the bench in the second half and added two more goals in the final 45 minutes.
In the 78th minute, a beautiful header by Henrick Mueller off of a free kick from Midland native Darius Strambler gave MOFC its fourth goal of the night.
Finally in the 81st minute, Strambler blasted a ball from 25 yards away into the upper left corner of the goal to close out the scoring on the night.
“We looked fresh tonight, we looked fit,” Barnes told reporters following the match. “We used up our whole bench. We didn’t see a change in the tempo when we subbed. So right now, I’m really optimistic about where we’re at.”