Four Kickers Wins And 12 Points - 3/24 Recaps

First Team

The Kickers first team secured another 3 points against FC Japan on Randall's Island. FX Thiolliere toe-poked a loose ball Ronaldinho-style past the FC Japan keeper in the first half to put the Kickers up 1-0, and that's the way it remained for most of the game. The Kickers dominated possession, perhaps giving the ball away unnecessarily too many times in the process and not capitalizing on countless corner kicks and set pieces, but the Kickers couldn't find the right combinations in the final third to put the game away early like they wanted to. FC Japan stayed in the game by defending well, but never really mounting much of an attack of their own. Late in the second half, some combination play between the defense and the midfield sprung James Z and Brian M in on goal against a few hapless defenders, and Brian slotted the ball into the net to put the Kickers up 2-0 before the final whistle blew.

Second Team

The Manhattan Kicker Reserves continued their good form with a commanding performance to get the victory over FC Japan. Jared Lichtarge opened the scoring early, with Danny Challita playing a cross to him and Jared ably slotting the ball past a keeper who would be the star of his team. It was an absolutely otherworldly performance by the FC Japan goalie, and the only thing keeping the score somewhat respectable. Save after save, including a mind blowing double save against Almir Hot, a one on one against Zander Pease, two incredible fingertip saves against Dennis Kachintsev, and many many more kept the dam from crashing down. It took 75 minutes and a set piece for the Kickers to finally pull further ahead. Tommy Herlihy curled the corner in, with Chris Smith contesting the header. The ensuing scramble lead to the ball falling to the feet of Dennis with the goal gaping and only the simplest of finishes required. The third came soon after. A cross by Michael Kahn was dummied by Dennis to draw the defenders away, allowing Lukas Seebacher a clear sight on goal. The final goal was provided by a player just coming back from a long layoff with injury and the days MVP Rodolfo Domingues. Receiving the ball just inside the opponents half, he dribbled past one, two, three defenders, powering into the box. FC Japan's center back clumsily took him out, making the penalty decision easy for the referee. Rodolfo put away the ensuing penalty with a delicate panenka finish. 4-0 final score, which makes it 3 games with 0 goals conceded and 10 goals scored for the reserve team roster.

Over-30 Premier

The Kickers Over-30 Premier won 10-2 and it could have been more. They did all the right things all game long but it started in the center midfield with a player that defended and prevented the opposition for doing with they wanted (AS). Having said that, it was 2 goals and three assists by (MVP) Nick Bill, 2 goals and 2 assists by Seamus Kelly, 3 goals and two assist by Ardian, and a goal each from Evan, Marco, and Abi for the 10-2 victory.

Over-30 Legends

It was a tale of two halves against perennial champions Cozmoz. The first half was marked by strong pressure from the eager Legends but poor finishing as almost every upfield player took turns to blast over the post. As typical punishment for such profligacy in front of goal, Cozmoz managed to score with practically their first shot on goal through the legendary and prolific Nedgy. The good thing that came out of it was that Dave Dupuy's effort to stop the shot exacted enough punishment on Nedgy for him to leave the game in some pain. However, before the half would end, Tim Petersen, deputizing gallantly in goal, would unfortunately see another slip under him. With a go for broke strategy in the second half, Legends kept Cozmoz pinned in their half from the start, and the Cozmoz defensive wall was eventually breached at the 60th minute mark by Ari Dolegowski, volleying in a badly cleared corner, for his 4th goal in 2 games. Perhaps fearing that his top-scorer lead was being diminished, Wale Bakare went all in for a 50:50 challenge and somehow emerged with a penalty kick, which he insisted on taking and converting confidently into the top left. Having tied the game, which would have been enough to maintain top of table standing, Legends did not take the foot off the pedal, but kept going for the full three points, and Joe Whitman claimed the reward when a Cozmoz player went down to a Wale tackle, half their team stopped, and then watched in horror as Wale played Joe in to round the keeper for the winner. 3-2 final score in favor of the Kickers, and a great team performance by everyone. This would be the first time that Legends have beaten Cozmoz in open play and we go six points clear at the top.