Saturday, April 28, 2012
SPRINGBORO, Ohio – The Rochester Rhinos took their third consecutive victory to open the USL PRO season, keeping the Dayton Dutch Lions searching for their first win, with a 1-0 victory that spoiled the Dutch Lions’ home opener at Careflight Stadium on Saturday night.
The first half was pretty even with both teams not keeping a lot of players behind the ball. The Dutch Lions tried to play their typical game by building up from the back but Rochester forced them to play the long ball, constantly preventing the team from getting into its game. Dayton forward Gerritt Bartels was left pretty isolated up front, making it hard for the side to get into the final third of the field. Both teams did not create any real chances other than a few shots from 20-to-25 yards out, leaving the game scoreless at halftime.
The game stayed pretty isolated with both teams not giving away anything to start the second half, but for the second game in a row Dayton gave away a goal due to a mistake in the back between goalie Matt Williams and Gregory Preciado. Rhinos forward JC Banks capitalized, picking up the ball and finishing into the empty goal for what proved to be the game-winner and his second of the season.
After the goal the Dutch Lions started putting more pressure on the Rhinos and the team drew very close to the equalizer when Gibson Bardsley dribbled into the left side of the penalty area. His shot was half-blocked and the ball went just wide of the goal. Akeem Priestley had a rocket from 25 yards out that Rhinos’ goalie Kristian Nicht saved nicely. Dayton then pushed numbers forward late in search of an equalizer, which resulted in their best and most spectacular chance of the night as Bardsley had a bicycle kick from eight yards out that just flew over the cross bar. The loss, which also left the Dutch Lions without a goal this season, left the Lions frustrated, but the Rhinos now head home undefeated ahead of their home opener next Saturday against the Charlotte Eagles.
Dayton will host its next two games at the Miami Valley South Stadium, starting with the Richmond Kickers (1-2-1) next Saturday at 7:30 p.m., followed by a match-up with the Los Angeles Blues on Friday, May 11. For season and individual game tickets, visit www.dutchlionsfc.com.