NFPL Matchweek 2 Review: Ole takes down Joy Athletic


Grand Rapids Ole traveled to Minnesota this weekend to take on table-topping Joy Athletic in Matchweek 2 in the National Futsal Premier League. 

Joy Athletic, coming off an NFPL debut victory over defending champions Futsal Factory Academy had no fear in the buildup to the match against the second team representing Michigan. Grand Rapids Ole, recently rebranded from ABK Futsal, has been a steady team in the NFPL since it's inception in 2018 and came into Matchweek 2 as a vastly more experienced side. 

The game started off evenly, with both teams playing an aggressive game that kept both goalkeepers busy early on. The scoresheet stayed level at 0-0 until Daniel Diaz of Grand Rapids Ole broke the deadlock in the 13th minute with an assist from Ole goalkeeper Miguel Cervantes. This goal opened the floodgates for both teams as Joy responded a few minutes later with back-to-back goals in the 17th and 18th minutes by Dimitri Nair to take the lead. 

Dimitri's joy would be short lived, however. Ole bounced back to take a 3-2 lead into the halftime break following goals from Chris Mendez and Yosof Abden. 

The second half started the same way as the first half as Joy came out hunting for a goal to level the scores while Ole were looking to create some breathing room between the two futsal teams. Joy Athletic would get the goal they were looking for in the 22nd minute from Philip Caputo. Grand Rapids Ole responded in the 26th and 28th minute, with goals from Jeo Garcia and Adrian Diaz, respectively. Moments later, Joy would get their fourth goal of their night from Mario Corona-Duran, assisted by Caputo.

After Joy's fourth, it was all Ole. Jonathan Stout would add two rapid fire goals in the 31st and 32nd minute, forcing Joy Athletic to play with five attackers and leave the goal empty down 7-4. Ole goalkeeper Miguel Cervantes, having played an outstanding goal between the posts, would add three unanswered goals in the 33rd and 36th minutes to close out the game. Ole head back to Grand Rapids with all three points in a 10-4 victory over Joy Athletic.

The two will play again in Grand Rapids at the end of the month on January 30 at 5:00pm local time. Click here for the full NFPL schedule.