Volume 19 • Issue 20 | Sept. 29 - Oct. 5, 2006
AC Milan vs. AS Roma
The Downtown Soccer League’s AC Milan beat AS Roma Sept. 21 on the Battery Park City ballfields.
The Roma team has remained for the most part unchanged, and not easily defeated, for the last three years under the leadership of John Griffin. So the news that the team’s two talented strikers, Dario Flores and Jacob Roter, could no longer play due to commitments to a traveling team, was a bit of a shock to players and parents. In the first half against Milan, already a tough opponent, it seemed the AS Roma players couldn’t find their footing, almost as if they expected any minute that someone stronger would come along and relieve them of their dribbling and shooting duties. Defensive players roamed the field, and Milan star Balthazar Merrin took advantage of the holes and plowed goal number one past Roma’s goalie Gabriel Colon, with Jessica King providing the assist. Merrin continued to batter the Roma goal, but Colon was able to block his next shots. Graham Nelson scored Milan’s second goal soon after, and the Roma team slowly started to get into the game. Nicholas Leong and Anthony Miguez did their best to bring the ball downfield for Roma, as Romy Macari and Margaret McGovern-Matthews defended the goal. Katie Higgins took a shot on goal as well, but at halftime the score was 2-0 Milan.
Coach Griffin assured the team that they were still in the game, and was pleased to see they had not given up. Tyler Rohan enthusiastically jumped into the goal for Roma, but Merrin was back at it, with a strong kick that touched Rohan’s gloves but sailed over his shoulder for the third goal. Truman Dunn of Milan was all over Roma’s Elias Griffin, who, despite being knocked down, kept on the ball and shot a strong (but wide) kick towards Milan’s Judah Lang in goal. Mia Potter also demonstrated some fancy footwork for Milan, but the ball was kicked out of bounds. Rohan cleared it to James Carney in midfield, who dribbled towards the goal but shot wide.
Milan continued to sub its players in a regular pattern, and it was fun to watch the happy expressions and high fives of each teammate as they left the field. Roma’s strategy to keep players on the field for longer periods paid off soon after, when after a few passes back and forth down field, Griffin’s kick to Carney resulted in Roma’s only goal of the game, an over-the-head blast. The final score was Milan 3, Roma 1.