MATCHWEEK 8 REVIEW:
OLé Survive a Scare, Cadence Grab a Point
Grand Rapids OLé 8-7 Futsal Factory Academy
Grand Rapids OLé came from behind to squeeze out a victory in a back-and-forth match against Michigan rivals Futsal Factory Academy this weekend.
The home side started off on the front foot with an early goal, brothers Lito Esquivel and Sammy Esquivel combining for the latter to poke home from close range with less than a minute played. In the past, visiting Futsal Factory Academy teams may have folded, but their response came less than a minute later.
Thomas Dono's pass found Lucas Carvalho streaking in front of the net to flick beyond Frankie Mendoza in goal and tie the game at 1 to 1.
Both teams traded goals once more to keep the game tied at 2. Cesar Martinez scored first through a sea of bodies from long range to take the lead, but Carvalho brought the teams level once more with a long-range strike of his own into the bottom corner.
The visitors then took the lead, scoring the 5th goal in as many minutes. A set play from out of bounds resulted in Drew Ducker brilliantly turning his defender and finding Gustavo Lira in front of the net to score from a few yards out. They would take a 4-2 lead just a few minutes later as captain and goalkeeper Robert Damron fired the ball on frame and Gui Ramos screened Mendoza and deflected it beyond him into the net.
Good footwork and a dangerous ball in from Jair Real resulted in an unfortunate own goal for Futsal Factory and it was 4-3 with about 12 minutes to play.
A timeout and a few scoreless minutes later, Grand Rapids tied it up through Mose Crawford pouncing first to a loose ball and finishing high and wide beyond Damron's hands. With under a minute to play in the half, Jair Real's quick feet once again created an opportunity. He was able to get his head up and find Cesar Martinez for his second goal of the game, a simple tap-in from 2 feet out into an empty net as OLé took the lead 5-4 going into halftime.
The second half was another closely-contested, back-and-forth affair as both teams fought for the decisive moments to decide the game. Some excellent saves from both goalkeepers maintained the 5-4 scoreline for the opening 4 minutes until it was broken by Cole Russell, hammering the ball into the net against his former club to tie the game.
With under 7 minutes to play, a brilliant save from Damron opened up a counter-attack for Futsal Factory as Ben Pritchard found Gui Ramos to take the lead 6-5.
It wouldn't last, though. The reigning Player of the Week, Gabe Villagomez, finally found the back of the net after some mesmerizing footwork dismantled the Futsal Factory defense before powering past Damron to tie the game. Just moments later, Cesar Martinez scored an eerily similar goal to take the lead for OLé!
As we entered the final few minutes, a careless pass from Russell went directly to Aaron Gomez, who played in Gabe Villagomez to score his second of the night and put the game out of reach. Gustavo Lira would put one more in from close range with under a minute to play, but Grand Rapids OLé would hold on to maintain their undefeated record and take all 3 points at home.
Cadence SFC 6-6 Detroit Imperial Futsal
After being demolished at home in the exact same fixture a few weeks ago, Cadence SFC have continued to right the ship, tying Detroit Imperial Futsal 6-6 to get their first points on the board this season.
Davide Di Poce led the way for the visitors with 4 goals, propelling him up the leaderboard to 9 goals on the season. For Cadence SFC, Gui Nunes stood out as player/coach with 2 goals.
A LOOK AT THE TABLE AFTER MATCHWEEK 8:
Futsal Factory remain winless at the bottom, while Grand Rapids OLé have taken a maximum 12 points out of 12 available. Detroit Imperial Futsal slipped up on the road but stay in a great position to reach the playoffs as we enter the second half of the season.
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