UTICA CITY FC CLINCHES HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE WITH THRILLING WIN OVER BALTIMORE BLAST, 4-3
Utica, NY - Utica City FC met the Baltimore Blast in a crucial game at home to determine the home standing of the opening round playoff game. Despite going down 3-0 in the first half, the home side would rally back to a 4-3 win over the rival Blast in their final game of the regular season.
In the first quarter, Baltimore opened the scoring. Lucas Roque buried the first goal of the game off an assist from Jonatas Melo. Utica City pushed a flurry of chances Baltimore’s way but came up empty in the first.
Late in the 2nd quarter, UCFC surrendered two goals. Nelson Santana scored the first-- his first attempt was blocked by a sliding Stefan Mijatovic, but he followed his rebound and scored. Tony Donatelli slid a back-door pass over to Ricardinho Sobreira who tucked it home and gave Baltimore a 3-0 lead at the half.
Utica City FC got on the board just seven seconds into the half. It was reigning MASL Player of the Week Taylor Bond who answered the call. He received a pass from Mijatovic right off the opening kickoff and the second half started with a bang. Five minutes later, Keaton Woods breezed past a defender, slotted it to the back post and Gordy Gurson finished to make it 3-2. The Adirondack Bank Center was rocking. Before the quarter ended, Utica City tied the game. Gordy Gurson broke down the left side, finished inside the left post to make it 3-3.
In the fourth quarter, Utica City FC would take the first lead of the night with a beautiful set play in the final seconds of a man advantage. Cristhian Segura patiently waited for a lane to open and found Nilton De Andrade on the back door for a redirect goal to take the lead. After some frenetic back and forth play to close the game, it was a chorus of cheers from the home faithful after Utica City sealed the deal, 4-3.
Next up for Utica City is the first round of the MASL Playoffs. They square off against the Kansas City Comets on Monday, April 10th at 6 PM. Tickets are available at https://www.uticacityfc.com/tickets.