Michael Lenahan takes it in for a Downtown Giant touchdown.
Major 10 action for Downtown kickers
After a rainy Sunday on October 5th squashed all hopes of exciting Downtown Soccer League action, players (and fans) had to wait yet another week after the Columbus Day holiday for three exciting match-ups on a clear and cool Fall Sunday.
Valencia kept up their undefeated streak, taking Mallorca 3-0 in the first game. Athletico and Barcelona were scoreless in the first half, but each managed to score a goal in the second for the first tie game of the D.S.L. Major 10 season.
Real Madrid was anxious for the rematch with Sevilla, after having lost to them 3-2 in their first game of the season, and it showed on the field. Ryan Porcaro was everywhere the ball was, dribbling past Sevilla defenders. He passed to teammate Luke Dilworth, who found a hole and scored the first goal for R.M. in the first few minutes.
Nicky Leong and Jacob Roter traded the ball back and forth and created a formidable offense for Sevilla, and worked with Daphne Tsapalas and Tyler Adams to even the score. Anthony Miguez played probably the best game of his career, clearing the ball over and over as left fullback for Sevilla. Madrid’s Sam Liberman (who’d missed the first game) made up for it with some nice passes, including one to Porcaro, but this time his breakaway was smothered by Sevilla goaltender Max Kong.
Sevilla answered with a fantastic drive with excellent passing between Leong, Roter and Elias Griffin, but an off-sides call nullified their momentum. Madrid tried to bring the ball back down, but was stymied by point defender Lumia Nocito. Leong got hold of the ball and passed to Griffin, whose fine boot from the corner sailed past Madrid goalie Simon Curtis-Ginsberg to tie up the score.
Roter did some fine dribbling and passed to Adams with a nice cross, but the ball was cleared out of bounds by Madrid’s Fischer Bodwell. Sevilla threw the ball in, but it was intercepted by Porcaro. This time his breakaway boot went over the heads of the defenders and deflected off of Kong’s hands into the goal, putting R.M. ahead again by a goal.
Sevilla tried to make it even with more offensive pressure by James Carney and midfielder Tyler Rohan, but R.M. was always there to clear and block, including Grace Bristol, Clyde Huibregtse and Milo Bernfield-Millman. Jasper Stoch passed well to teammate Felix Parker, but Rohan’s aggressive boot brought it back down toward the Sevilla goal. His pass to Leong didn’t connect however, and Porcaro’s subsequent breakaway was cleared by Carney and Matt Levine, keeping the score 2-1 at the end of the first half.
Sevilla’s defense was determined not to let R.M. add to their total in the second half. Deejai Riangkrul’s pass to Porcaro was pushed back by Sevilla’s Matt Levine. Simon Curtis-Ginsberg’s throw-in was cleared by Adams, but resulted in another breakaway by Porcaro. Tyler Rohan, now in goal, aggressively came out to meet Porcaro’s breakaway, and made a superb sliding interception, then clearing it way downfield. Sophia Stoch made a fine pass to R.M. teammate Liberman, who sent it to Mirabella, who connected with Porcaro, but Rohan made another fine save. Tsapalas cleared the ball and Sevilla tried again to score, but R.M.’s defense turned it over once again to Porcaro. His shot on goal was deflected by Rohan’s outstretched arms. Although Rohan and Sevilla’s diamond defense (including Romy Macari in her first game of the season) shut out R.M. in the second half, every offensive drive by Sevilla was halted by Madrid’s defense. Sevilla made one or two shots on goal against Huibregtse, but neither team was able to score.
The final score was Real Madrid 2, Sevilla 1.