A Literal Barn Burner: Detroit City FC stuns MKE Torrent at the last minute for a 3-3 draw

The smoke from the supporter section wafted on to the field during the Detroit City/MKE Torrent match

Detroit City had many expectations coming into the 2017 NPSL season. Scoring three goals in their first match was probably one of them…giving up three was most definitely not one of them.

The spirited Torrent of Milwaukee came out after halftime and turned the intensity up on City, actually seizing the lead for a while, before surrendering it to a Max Todd goal in the 96th (!!!!!!) minute.

“I’m disappointed.” said City head coach Ben Pirrman. “It’s disappointing to give up three goals at home.”

Play started with the first registered shot in the 15th minute, from new player Todd. It was a header that went wide. Right after, City pressed the MKE goal with Roddy Green, forcing MKE keeper Josh Rohde to come off his line to make a diving stop. Literally a minute later, Rohde was making another diving save, but this time on Cyrus Saydee.

In the 23rd minute, Green and MKE defender Stuart Grable tumbled into Detroit’s box for a foul on Green…and Grable got up and shoved Green down, not appreciating the tangled feet. He was justly rewarded with a yellow from the head official.

MKE had a chance to take the lead early, but after a string of lovely headers and passes, a cross came to a wide open Archie Suah in the box, who put the ball a good 10 feet over the net, much to the chagrin of the traveling support.

Suah soon found himself in the ref’s book when he played a ball high and caught the head of Detroit’s Bakie Goodman in the 36th.

Detroit finally broke through in the 39th, when Green found Saydee on the left hand side. Saydee put two moves on in the box, before calmly sliding the ball past MKE’s Rohde for the first goal for Detroit this NPSL season.

MKE would soon answer after halftime. In the 50th minute, former Michigan Buck Drew Rugles crossed a ball in to the City box, and after it bounced around for a minute, Declan Rodriguez slotted it home to tie the game up at one a piece.

Detroit’s Green picked up a yellow for his incessant hand fighting with MKE’s Grable in the 52nd minute, much to the annoyance of the home crowd, and Coach Pirrman.

Detroit would add another goal via a rare and spectacular way. Jeff “JBaby” Adkins lined up for a corner kick from the left side of the goal, in the 59th minute, and his corner carried all the way into the box, just over the hand of an outstretched Rohde. That’s right…he scored an Olimpico goal.

The happy feeling didn’t last too long though, as a typical problem rose up for Detroit. Right after scoring a goal, recent MKE sub Mark Hutchinson capitalized on on DCFC goalie Nate Steinwascher’s mistake, to make it 2-2. Steinwascher had a little bit of a hard time grabbing the ball, and as a result, Hutchinson pounced and knocked the ball in to tie it up.

Penalty cries echoed throughout Keyworth when Max Todd dove into the box in the 67th minute. (Yes he dove. Watch the tape. Dive), and from that started the MKE attack the other way which led to one of the most gorgeous shots taken at Keyworth ever.

Nemanja Medic (sounds a lot like this guy, but it isn’t) collected the ball on the left hash mark, and from about 25 yards out, laced a looping missile over the outstretched hands of Steinwascher to give the Torrent a 3-2 lead in the 69th minute.

“I had been watching the goalie the entire match,” Medic said afterwards. “I saw that he pinched to the closest post whenever we had the ball on a side, so when I got a chance, I just turned and shot it far post.”

Saydee almost tied the game again in the 77th minute, but his shot was saved by Rohde after a one on one chance.

In an awkward moment, assistant coach (and former City goalkeeper) Bret Mollon was tossed from the game as dissent towards the referees. As a result of the time it took to iron out the situation, more time was added on at the end,hence the SIX (!!!!!!) minutes of extra time.

The extra few minutes allowed for something special to happen. With the ball bouncing around and City pressuring to score a goal, Spencer Glass sent a cross into the box, that met with the hands of the keeper Rohde…No speculation can be made over what happened next, but someone felt that the smoke from the supporter side might have interfered with the goalie’s perception of the flight of the ball. That someone also said that it wasn’t the only factor, but could have been one.

Nonetheless, Rohde dropped the ball, and Todd was there to scoop it into the back of the net which led to a raucous celebration.

Understandably, Coach Pirrman was not in a good mood afterwards.

“We had the same back seven from the last friendly (against Dayton Dynamo).” he said annoyed. “It’s not a talent thing or a personal thing or a system thing. It’s a focus thing. We need to maintain focus throughout. It’s the mental mistakes that do us in.”

Indeed, through two games at Keyworth Stadium, City have scored five goals…but also allowed five goals, with four of them coming via the counterattack, a sore point for City.

“It’s the mental lapses. Maybe we need to shake some stuff up,” Pirrman said, talking about player personal. “We already had a planned different lineup for Sunday (against Michigan Stars), so maybe we’ll see how that one goes.”

Pirrman wasn’t totally negative though.

“Cyrus played great. Dave and Bakie fought hard in the middle. Jeff Adkins played great as well. We were going to try to get him a sub at the end, even though he ran the full 90.”

Detroit City sits at (0-1-0, 1pt) and they travel to Hurley Field in Berkley to play the Michigan Stars at 4pm.