LIONS FALL 3-2 TO DERBY

Danville, KY (July 12, 2016)   The Cincinnati Dutch Lions FC (1-8-3   6 points) headed south to take on the third place Derby City Rovers (6-4-2   20 points) and played hard for 90 minutes but fell short in a 3-2 loss.  The Lions were led by Chris Dupont’s brace as they came back from a halftime 2-0 deficit to get even.  Unfortunately, the home squad were able to get the final goal with 15 minutes left in the match to seal the victory.

The game started with both teams a bit tentative not wanting to give much space in the attacking third.  Neither team was creating any dangerous combinations and the shots were easy for both keepers to save.  The Rovers got the first break of the match when the Lions keeper, Pedro Diaz, was not able to handle a shot on goal and the rebound was knocked in for a 1-0 lead.    With 10 minutes left in the half Derby was able to take advantage of another Lions miscue and got a second goal on the board.

The halftime lead was 2-0.

“A lot of teams would have packed it up, down 2-0 on the road and the goals not necessarily being of the highest quality.  I am proud of the way our lads fought back.  The second half was a brand of soccer that I was glad to be a part off.  It is just brutal that we could not convert our other chances and put the game away, and then for them to get a goal late was very disheartening.  Our division is tough, but I believe we should have walked away with something from this match and to not have is disappointing,” said Head Coach Terry Nicholl.

The second half was much more productive for the Lions and their hard work paid off in the 60 minute.  Ryan Melink was able to get free down the left flank and after beating the outside back, he cut in and hammered a shot fart post.  The Derby keeper got his hand on it, but Chris Dupont was rushing in and was able to fire the loose ball past a lunging defender to get Cincinnati on the scoreboard.

The Lions continued to push the play, were gaining the better of the possession and were creating chances.  The goal energized them as they earned several corner kicks and had back-to-back good shots on goal.   In the 68th minute, the visitors created another great chance.  Dupont won the ball in midfield, took a quick dribble and hit a through ball that split the two center backs.  Jake Meyer had timed his run perfectly and was on to goal.  As Meyer entered the penalty area, a Derby defender clumsily tried to steal the ball and took Meyer down.  The penalty kick was called and Dupont stepped up to take the spot kick.  His shot sent the keeper the wrong way and his second goal of the evening tied the game 2-2.

All the momentum was in the Lions favor and they had two good chances to get the go ahead goal.  A nice save and a shot just over the cross-bar kept the game tied.  The Rovers were bending, but not breaking and they continued to play hard as well.  In the 75th minute, they scored their best goal of the night and the eventual game winner as a good combination of short passes allowed the right outside midfielder to get into the goalie area and slide a shot past the diving Diaz.

Just a few minutes later, both teams were reduced to 10 men as Scott Lamont was involved in a pushing tussle over a throw-in and the referee gave red cards to both players involved.  The final 10 minutes was back and forth as the field opened up a bit, but the Lions could not find the equalizer.

“This was a tough loss for us.  The guys were very upset after the match.  We deserved better, but we have struggled all year to catch a break.  Tonight was no different~we had good chances and could not convert, and they had half chances and got s couple goals,.  At the same time, as the one of the captains of this squad, I am pleased with our effort the second half and we will come back and work to get a win at Pittsburgh.  We are playing for our pride now because we are better than our record shows and we need to get a couple wins to close the year,” shared tri-captain Chris Dupont.

The Cincinnati Dutch Lions FC will travel to Pittsburgh Riverhounds for a 2:00pm kickoff this Thursday and then will play their final match of the season at home on Sunday, 7/17.  The match will be at the Mason Multi Purpose field and will kickoff at 4:00 pm.

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