It was chilly in the city of Hamtramck, but the pitch was blazing with intensity as the visiting (and much improved) Dayton Dynamo drew with Detroit City FC 2-2 in the final friendly for both clubs before the beginning of the NPSL 2017 Midwestern season.
While it was just a friendly, you wouldn’t have been able to tell if you looked into the crowd, as an amazing 4168 people packed into Keyworth Stadium to watch the friendly between NPSL foes.
Play started quickly as new DCFC signing Roddy Green (of Saginaw Valley) blistered a shot at Dayton’s keeper Ryan Hulings, that set the pace for the game as Dayton absorbed a lot of pressure for a majority of the first half.
Jeff “JBaby” Adkins played got a shot on net in the 7th minute from a Cyrus Saydee pass, but Hulings was aware and ready to save. Seven minutes later, Detroit got their first real chance to score as Troy Watson (of Saginaw Valley) tried to thread a perfect ball to Jordan Tyler (who will be called “El Swab“), and the Penn State alum got a toe on the ball, but couldn’t direct it down into the open net.
The first goal came from Detroit in the 19th. Adkin took Detroit’s second corner of the match, and lashed it into the box. New signing Zach Bock (of Western Michigan) lifted his foot to deflect the ball into the net, but before it crossed the line, it deflected off of Dayton’s Peyton Mowery’s back into the net to make it 1-0 (It was credited as an own goal…but that’s Bock’s goal imo).
A scary moment for Dayton in the 26th minute as Baye Kebe (HE’S 38!!!!!) slid into Tyler in the penalty box, and was whistled for the first yellow card of the game. But the official ruled that Kebe (HE PLAYED IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE….BUT HE’S 38!!!!!) collided with Tyler after Tyler’s shot sailed wide, thus no penalty kick.
While Dayton was out shined in the first half, one bright light early for them was returning midfielder Tate Robertson. He slinked his way through Detroit’s defense all night with great touches and speed through the middle and down the sides.
Coming out of halftime, Detroit City made some substitutions, putting on fan favorite (and NPSL 2014 Goal of the year winner) Shawn Claude Lawson, who electrified the crowd with a few slick back heels, that resulted in shots for the team. Jeff Adkins got in the action too with two straight nutmegs in the middle of the field, with the home crowd going crazy.
The second goal for Detroit came from Cyrus Saydee, as he collected a pass from captain Dave Edwards on the right wing, and unleashed a curling missile from the top of the 18 yard box in the 56th minute to sew up the game…or so they thought.
While Northern Guard was lighting smoke bombs, and the fan side was cheering, Dayton launched a counter attack led by Robertson who slid a pass to David Lyle who chipped the on rushing Detroit keeper, Nathan Steinwascher to make it 2-1 in the 57th.
Eight minutes later, the Dynamo pulled even as Robertson found himself on the left wing, and slid a pass into the middle to Lyle, who beat Steinwascher one on one to make it 2-2 and quiet the stadium.
Detroit’s last chance to break the deadlock came in the 82nd minute, when Tommy “My Favorite” Catalano collected a cross into the box and had his shot saved by Hulings. The ensuing corner met the head of a Detroit player and ricocheted off the cross bar, then off a defender, then off of a post, but was ultimately cleared.
Head coach Ben Pirrman had one message post game,
“Preseason is over.” he said, sternly. “We had a few guys who basically came off the plane…some who didn’t get a chance to train fully, who played tonight. But preseason is over.”
Pirrman was happy with parts of the game, but not the ending.
“We did almost everything perfect in the first 25 minutes, save for scoring a second goal. We played the ball long early, but when Dayton settled down, we needed to adjust.”
Detroit City’s next match is next Friday against the Milwaukee Torrent (who lost to AFC Ann Arbor 3-1, while this friendly was going on), and Coach Pirrman feels that they will be ready when they next step on the field at Keyworth.
“We just need to get more practices in and get guys together.”
Tickets for next Friday’s home match start as low as $10 ($8 if purchased in a group).
Fouls: Dayton 12, Detroit,8
Shots (on goal): Detroit 12 (9), Dayton 6 (4)
Saves: Dayton 9, Detroit 1
Corners: Detroit 7, Dayton 1
Goals: Detroit – Bock (Adkins) 19′, Detroit – Saydee (Edwardson) 56′, Dayton – Lyle (Robertson) 57′, Dayton – Lyle (Robertson) ’65
Bookings: Kebe – ’26 (Yellow)
Men of the Match. 3) Tristian Lyle: 2 goals, 2) Cyrus Saydee: 1 assist, controlled the game, 1) Tate Roberson, 2 assists, controlled the midfield for Dayton and started the attack