Cincinnati, OH (July 16, 2016) The women’s Dayton Dutch Lions FC (6-1-1 19 points) finished the regular season with a 0-0 draw against neighboring Cincinnati Sirens (2-4-2 8 points). Neither team could generate much offense on a very hot and muggy evening.
The Lady Lions were looking to build some momentum heading into the 2016 Regional playoffs, but at the same time wanted to get everyone some quality minutes and come out of the match without any injuries. The second part was accomplished with the entire bench playing throughout the match and everyone was fine at the final whistle.
The early pace of the game was slowed by the high temperatures at kickoff. Neither team was pushing forward with any numbers and no real scoring chances were being created. The Lions were comfortable in controlling the midfield and forcing the ball wide. They moved the ball methodically around the pitch, but could not find any openings. The several shots they did have in the first half were easily handled by the Sirens keeper.
The majority of action for both goalies was to pick up the errant long balls that were being played up the middle of the field. The halftime score was 0-0.
“I asked the girls to push forward and to have a greater focus on the final touch. We needed to be more patient and to do a bit better with our buildup. We played rushed in the attacking third and I really felt we would score if we would just relax a bit. The second half was better, there goalkeeper made several nice saves and we were unfortunate to not have scored. The defense posted another shutout which is always good and they cut down on the errors. I believe we are ready for the playoffs,” shared Assistant Coach Shane Smith. Smith was leading the squad with Head Coach Ian Richardson out of the country.
The Lions did have more attacking focus and had two strong scoring chances. The first came off a nice give-and-go down the left side and a cross was met by the onrushing Vanessa Gilles who hit a hard low rocket, but the keeper was able to get behind the shot and push it away. The second came off the hard work of the center mids, Ashley Gogolin and Katie Murray, as they won the ball and set off on the counter attack. The ball was played wide and crossed into the box. As it ran across the box no attacker could get a foot on the ball.
Dayton controlled the match, kept their spacing and kept the majority of possession. The final whistle left it at 0-0.
The Lady Lions will practice this week and travel to the Heartland division champion (most likely Chicago) and will play a match on Saturday and Sunday. More details will be made available as the playoff draw will occur on Monday afternoon.