AFC Ann Arbor hosted Detroit City FC at Hollway Field Sunday afternoon and the local rivalry did not disappoint as The Mighty Oak earned a 2-0 victory to remain undefeated in NPSL play.
Detroit came ready to play and controlled the game for large portions of the first half. The first real chance of the game went to AFC through Alec Lasinski in the 32nd minute. He took a touch around his defender before firing over the crossbar.
Just eight minutes later and with halftime looming, Audi of Ann Arbor Man of the Match Dario Suarez took control of the game. He slid in behind the DCFC defense and fired the ball into the back of the net at the far post to put Ann Arbor up 1-0 heading into halftime.
After a 15-minute downpour at halftime, the sides came back out just as the clouds cleared and play resumed. The match went back-and-forth with both sides creating chances early on in the second half, as did the rain.
In the 61st minute, Suarez again took over, after some nice link-up play between Jesse Muskwe and Tendai Jiraira. The ball rolled to Dario, he took a touch, and buried the ball in the top corner to make it 2-0 for AFC. Once again, a goal to remember compliments of Super Dario.
There was a lot of game left, but The Mighty Oak stayed calm and compact in defense, and continued to look for ways to put the game out of reach. The second half saw several yellow cards for both sides and a bit of pushing and shoving but ultimately nothing serious.
In the end, The Mighty Oak were able to hold on and get the win. It was a great team display – AFC shared the ball well, looked comfortable in possession, and made the most of their chances.
Coach Rudland was proud of the result, but wanted to make sure the men kept this win in perspective.
“This is just another game,” he said. “We want to continue to stay focused on the process and the details, and stay sharp in training. But it’s obviously a big win for us.”
The result puts AFC Ann Arbor on top of the NPSL Great Lakes West table with twelve points from a possible twelve.
AFC Ann Arbor will look to keep their fine form going on Friday night as they take on Lansing United on the road at 7:00 pm before returning to Pioneer Monday, May 29th for the 3rd annual Memorial Day Classic.