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MSOC: Flyers Lose 1-0 to Davidson in 2OT
MSOC: Flyers Lose 1-0 to Davidson in 2OT
C.M. Rieman
Published by Chris R
10-06-2018
Cool MSOC: Flyers Lose 1-0 to Davidson in 2OT

DAYTON (OH) -- The Dayton Flyers battled Davidson College to a scoreless 90 minutes of regulation, but the Wildcats connected top-shelf from long distance at the start of the second OT to steal the road victory and keep UD winless in conference play. Dayton falls to 4-4-4 (0-2-1) while Davidson improves to 6-4-0 (2-0-0).

The first minutes of the opening half were an opportunity for both teams to assess each other's strengths and weaknesses. Probing for space to create one- and two-touch combination play, the teams battled for sustained possession and tried to commandeer the overall run of play. Neither side was a decisive winner however. Most of the early action took place in between the 18s as one side would knock the ball around for extended moments, only to be dispossessed or victim to a poor pass that was ultimately picked off.

The match slowly turned into a defensive struggle as neither side created much of a push into the offensive third. Without any dangerous opportunities for either side, the goalkeepers had little to keep them busy. Unable to produce shots -- nevermind shots on goal -- the match continued to be a wrestling match for any sort of positive momentum that might ultimately lead to crosses in the box or shots on frame.

Dayton's best chance came on a push forward along the left side as Rok Taneski encroached inside the Davidson goal box. His shot to the near post caromed off however and dribbled directly parallel to the goal line. No one was there to punch it home and give the Flyers the lead.

Not much materialized in the last 20 minutes of the half. Davidson did just enough to earn a pair of corner kicks -- one that required a tip over the crossbar by Flyer GK Federico Barrios. Offensive punch in the run-of-play however was extremely limited. Credit goes to the defensive lines of both squads as tight marking forced many dis-possessions or errant passes from the consistent pressure being applied.

The Flyers were taken down in the Wildcat goal box on a bull-rush while chasing down a ball sent forward, but the referee swallowed his whistle and elected not to award a PK -- perhaps because the UD player did not have possession of the ball.

First half stats were pedestrian as UD outshot DC 5-2 and claimed the only shot on goal in the entire half. Davidson earned the lone two corner kicks while committing 10 fouls to Dayton's four.

Davidson began the 2nd half by applying additional pressure in their offensive third, causing the Flyers to do some extra defending compared to the first 45 minutes. The Wildcats moved the ball around with quicker touches and more assertiveness, causing Dayton to defend on their heels. Davidson did a nice job of mixing things up, working the touch lines for service into open space or sending diagonal balls into the midfield to take advantage of better distribution opportunities on the second or third pass.

Barrios was forced into hero mode on several balls inside his box as the 2nd half continued. Punchouts and saves kept DC off the scoreboard and the match still scoreless, but as the play continued the majority of soccer continued to be played in UD's defensive half. The Wildcats had a shot ricochet off the crossbar, requiring a huge reflex deflection by Barrios to send the rebound out of danger just yards from his goal line. Barrios would also come up huge with a well-timed kick save to turn away a Wildcat counterattack on the right side.

As the final 20 minutes of regulation arrived, the Flyers were struggling for any sort of offensive punch, nevermind sustained possession anywhere past midfield. The most advantageous opportunities came on counter-attacks but even those were few and far between.

The Flyers turned things around in the final 10 minutes however, able to create more possession and greater push into the attacking portion of the field. Finding more space to maneuver, UD generated several dangerous balls in the Davidson goal box. Their best chance came on a nifty shot from the right side about 16yds out that caught the DC goalkeeper napping and off his line. The strike almost snuck inside the near post but a diving save kept the ball out of the net.

Barrios came up huge once again with under two minutes in regulation. The Wildcats earned a free kick from 20yds just left of center. Another diving save at the far post preserved the shutout and forced the match into extra time.

The first overtime resulted in both sides taking their chances on long balls in the box, mostly from free kicks and corner kicks after a stoppage of play. The Flyers had a couple decent chances at the far post, but nobody was home to put a ball away. Defensively, Barrios had to pluck a handful of high balls out of the air -- several in traffic -- to stomp out Davidson's best chances.

Unfortunately, Davidson put their best shot on goal into the back of the net in the first minute of the 2nd OT after UD failed to apply pressure outside their box. The Wildcats tee'd it up from 20yds out and rifled a shot to the upper 90 of the far post for the 1-0 game-winner that Barrios had virtually no chance on.

Overall, DC outshot UD 13-10 while shots on goal were even at 4-4. Dayton managed just one corner kick to Davidson's eight.

The Flyers struggled over much of the 2nd half but rebounded late and had a chance to win the match in regulation. The Wildcats were able to convert on a chance in extra time and probably played better overall to earn the road victory.

Barrios kept the Flyers in it, but a lack of dynamic playmaking in the middle third bogged down UD's attack and kept Head Coach Dennis Currier's team from being able to play the ball on the ground for long stretches or transition seamlessly from defense to offense. The repetitive long-ball service into the offensive half of the field was not overly burdensome for the Wildcats to defend.

The Flyers have the week off and travel to Rhode Island next weekend for a Saturday evening match at Rhode Island. Kickoff is 7pm.
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C. M. Rieman | Publisher | 937.361.4630 | Get the latest here:

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