Do Haeng Michael Kitchen

Writer. Attorney. Detroit City FC Til I Die.

On August 15, 2019, Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, and Oakland Roots SC were accepted as members of the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA).

On January 27, 2020, NISA announced its spring schedule for the eight teams in the association, with each team playing 14 games (a home-and-home series with each team), to run from February 28th to June 13th.

The February 28th opening day featured 1904 FC visiting Stumptown Athletic, Cal United Strikers FC hosting Michigan Stars, our frenemies Chattanooga FC, flew out to California to play the Oakland Roots, and Detroit City FC played its first pro match in LA against Los Angeles Force.  Supporters packed the Detroit City Clubhouse to watch the live-stream of the match, which Detroit City FC won, 2-0, on goals by Matt Lewis and Roddy Green.

Then the pandemic hit.

Detroit City FC’s first home game as a Men’s professional team was to be March 21st, against Oakland Roots.  However, due to the pandemic, NISA suspended the season for 30 days on March 12th.  Eight days later, in compliance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, NISA suspended the season until May 10th.  On April 27th, NISA officially cancelled the Spring/Summer season.

This page is to show the record of Detroit City FC against each team in a NISA competition.

Overall NISA Record
Games:  7

Wins: 4
Draws: 2
Losses: 1
Goals for:  11
Goals against: 2

Chattanooga FC
Games: 1
Wins: 0
Draws: 0
Losses: 1
Goals for: 0
Goals against: 2

08/15/20: Detroit City FC 0, Chattanooga FC 2

Cleveland SC
Games: 1
Wins: 1
Draws: 0
Losses: 0
Goals for: 3
Goals against: 0

07/31/20: Detroit City FC 3, Cleveland SC 0

FC Buffalo
Games: 1
Wins: 1
Draws: 0
Losses: 0
Goals for: 3
Goals against: 0

08/01/20: Detroit City FC 3, FC Buffalo 0

Los Angeles Force
Games: 1
Wins: 1
Draws: 1
Losses: 0
Goals for: 2
Goals against: 0

02/28/20: Los Angeles Force 0, Detroit City FC 2

Michigan Stars FC
Games: 1
Wins: 0
Draws: 1
Losses: 0
Goals for: 0
Goals against: 0

08/22/20: Michigan Stars FC 0, Detroit City FC 0

New Amsterdam FC
Games: 1
Wins: 1
Draws: 0
Losses: 0
Goals for: 3
Goals against: 0

09/05/20:  Detroit City FC 3, New Amsterdam FC 0

New York Cosmos
Games: 1
Wins: 0
Draws: 1
Losses: 0
Goals for: 0
Goals against: 0

09/09/20: New York Cosmos 0, Detroit City FC 0

2020 NISA Fall Tournament

  • September 21, 2020: Michigan Stars vs Detroit City FC
  • September 21, 2020:  Oakland Roots vs New Amsterdam FC
  • September 22, 2020:  Cal United Strikers vs New York Cosmos
  • September 22, 2020: Chattanooga FC vs Los Angeles Force
  • September 24, 2020: Oakland Roots vs Detroit City FC
  • September 24, 2020: Michigan Stars vs New Amsterdam FC
  • September 25, 2020: Chattanooga FC vs New York Cosmos
  • September 25, 2020:  Cal United Strikers vs Los Angeles Force
  • September 27, 2020: Oakland Roots vs Michigan Stars
  • September 27, 2020: Detroit City FC vs New Amsterdam FC
  • September 28, 2020: Chattanooga FC vs Cal United Strikers
  • September 28, 2020: New York Cosmos vs Los Angeles Force
  • September 30, 2020:
  • September 30, 2020:
  • October 2, 2020:

September 5, 2020
NISA Fall Season
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI
Detroit City FC 3, New Amsterdam FC 0
Attendance: 1 (Smokey the Bot)

DCFC Connor Rutz 7′
DCFC Shawn Claud Lawson 11′
DCFC Connor Rutz (Elijah Rice) 61′

NAFC – Mahmoud Keita (red card) 40′
DCFC – Elijah Rice (red card) 72′
NAFC – Oluremi Williams (red card) 82′

Where we left off after the Chattanooga FC match, the NISA Fall League standings looked like this for the East (with no matches played in the West).

Michigan Stars: 1-1-0 = 4 pts
Chattanooga FC: 1-0-1 = 3 pts
New York Cosmos: 0-1-0 = 1 pt
Detroit City FC: 0-0-1 = 0 pts
New Amsterdam FC: 0-0-0 = 0 pts

Our next match was August 22, 2020 in Pontiac against the Michigan Stars.  Having attended these road matches against the Stars in the past, I’d purchase a ticket for the game and shoot from the stands with the Northern Guard Supporters.  However, with no fans allowed, I sought a media pass for this one.  Of course, the lack of contact information on the Michigan Stars website, coupled with an unanswered response after using their generic online contact form, I didn’t attend the 0-0 draw at Ultimate Soccer Arenas.  But looking at the broadcast feed, maybe they didn’t want too much evidence of the ‘fans’ they allowed in to watch the match, contrary to the State of Michigan COVID-19 restrictions of small gatherings with social distancing.

The night before the Michigan Stars match, the New York Cosmos defeated New Amsterdam FC by a 3-1 score.  Detroit was to head to New York to face the Cosmos on August 29th.

The day after the City-Stars match, Jacob Blake was shot seven times in the back by a police officer in Kenosha, WI.  This act was another example of the need for America to face its racism disease.  On Wednesday, the Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA walked out of their playoff game against the Orlando Magic, in response to and support of Jacob Blake.  Orlando chose not to accept the forfeit and walked out as well.  The players of the other two NBA games and the WNBA games, walked out.  Other sports teams followed.

The next day, Detroit City FC issued the following statement:

In response to the shooting of Jacob Blake and the continued devaluation of Black lives, the players of Detroit City FC have made the decision to not play Saturday’s match against the New York Cosmos.

The DCFC organization wholeheartedly supports this decision.

The need to address social injustice and racism supersedes sports at this moment.

In lieu of the match at the New York Cosmos, Detroit City FC – led by the players – is developing a call to action for Saturday evening.

New Amsterdam FC made the same decision for their match in Chattanooga.  Both matches were postponed.

The players’ statement aired at 7:00 PM, Saturday’s match time.

 

Before tonight’s match, the standings were:

Michigan Stars: 1-2-0 = 5 pts
New York Cosmos: 1-1-0 = 4 pts
Chattanooga FC: 1-0-1 = 3 pts
Detroit City FC: 0-1-1 = 1 pts
New Amsterdam FC: 0-0-1 = 0 pts

 

      

STARTING XI

Nate Steinwascher – Keeper
Tendai Jirira – Defender
Stephen Carroll – Defender
Michael Kafari – Defender
James Filerman – Midfielder
Ibrahim Conteh – Midfielder
George Chomakov – Midfielder
Kevin Venegas – Midfielder
Evans Frimpong – Forward
Connor Rutz – Forward
Shawn Claud Lawson – Forward

The first thirty-seconds of the match, everyone took a knee for racial justice.

 

In the 7th minute, Connor Rutz opened the scoring.

Four minutes later, Shawn Claud Lawson doubles the lead.

Five minutes before the close of the first half, Mahmoud Keita earned his second yellow card (which could have been a straight red) with a nasty tackle on George Chomakov, sending Keita to the showers early, and giving City an 11-10 man advantage.

At the 61st minute, Elijah Rice pushes through a ball to Connor Rutz to score his second of the match.

The match continued its chippy attitude.  Elijah Rice was shown a straight red card in 72nd minute, and Oluremi Williams of New Amsterdam was carded in the 82nd minute after a high kick to the chest of Ibrahim Conteh.

Smokey the Bot launched a massive amount of smoke in the final minutes, sending New Amsterdam FC home smelling of sulfur.

The 3-0 victory moves City up the table ahead of the rescheduled New York Cosmos match to come on Wednesday, September 9th.

Michigan Stars: 1-2-0 = 5 pts
New York Cosmos: 1-1-0 = 4 pts
Detroit City FC: 1-1-1 = 4 pts
Chattanooga FC: 1-0-1 = 3 pts
New Amsterdam FC: 0-0-2 = 0 pts

August 15, 2020
NISA Fall Season
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI
Detroit City FC 0 vs Chattanooga FC 2
Attendance: 1 (Smokey the Bot)

CFC Darwin Lom (Zeca Ferraz) 4′
CFC Zeca Ferraz 56′

The NISA Fall Season began last week with our frenemies, Chattanooga FC in the state to play against the Michigan Stars.  Unfortunately, CFC fell by a 2-1 score.

The supporter-owned team from Tennessee returned north to be our guest at our Fall Season home opener.  We have played them five times previously, three of them friendlies in which each team won a game, and there was a draw.  The other two were in last year’s NPSL Members Cup, both won by Detroit City.

Starting XI

Nate Steinwascher – Goalkeeper
Michael Kafari – Defender
Steve Carroll – Defender
Seb Capozucchi – Defender
Jimmy Filerman – Midfield
Ibrahim Conteh – Midfield
Tendai Jirira – Midfield
Evans Frimpong – Midfield
Connor Rutz – Midfield
Ryan Peterson – Forward
Yazeed Matthews – Forward

The first thirty-seconds of the match, the teams and officials took a knee for racial justice.

At half time, Chattanooga led 1-0 on an early goal by Darwin Lom.  A long ball launched by keeper Alec Redington, which found one CFC head, then another, and on to the foot of Lom who chipped it past Nate Steinwascher.

In the second half, Chattanooga added another at the 56th minute from a corner kick.

Detroit City held a lot of the possession but could not connect in the final third, as CFC anticipated City’s progression well, frustrating City’s offense.

Also this evening, the Michigan Stars and New York Cosmos played to a 1-1 draw out east.  At the end of the night, the standings looked like this.

Michigan Stars: 1-1-0 = 4 pts
Chattanooga FC: 1-0-1 = 3 pts
New York Cosmos: 0-1-0 = 1 pt
Detroit City FC: 0-0-1 = 0 pts
New Amsterdam FC: 0-0-0 = 0 pts

After Cleveland SC defeated FC Buffalo on July 29, 2020 by a 3-1 score, and Detroit City FC defeated Cleveland SC on July 31, 2020 by a 3-0 score, the final match of the NISA Independent Cup, Great Lakes Region tournament was this match against FC Buffalo.

A rainy morning dampened Keyworth, and a perfectly timed shower in the final minutes of the first half that ended just before the start of the second half, set the stage.

August 2, 2020
NISA Independent Cup
Great Lakes Region
Detroit City FC 3, FC Buffalo 0
Attendance: 1 (Smokey the Bot)

DCFC Yazeed Matthews (Evans Frimpong) 15′
DCFC Shawn Lawson (Jimmy Filerman) 31′
DCFC Connor Rutz (Jimmy Filerman) 36′

Again, the team wore the cool and substantive Black Lives Matters warm-up shirts.

Tonight’s Starting XI for City:

Nate Steinwascher – Goalkeeper
Tendai Jirira – Defender
Steve Carroll – Defender
Seb Capozucchi – Defender
Jimmy Filerman – Midfielder
Ibrahim Conte – Midfielder
Roddy Green – Midfielder
Evans Frimpong – Midfielder
Connor Rutz – Midfielder
Shawn Lawson – Forward
Yazeed Matthews – Forward

In the opening thirty seconds, everyone took a knee because Black Lives Matter.

Once the game commenced, so did Smokey the Bot, with the opening match plumes of smoke.

In the 15th minute, Evans Frimpong sent the ball to Yazeed Matthews, who fired it past FC Buffalo keeper Bryce Tramuta.

Smokey the Bot celebrates!

In the 26th minute, FC Buffalo was awarded a penalty kick.  Nate Steinwascher stymied the shooter.

In the 31st minute, Jimmy Filerman delivered this bicycle shot to the foot of Shawn Lawson, who directed it into the goal.  2-nil.

And Smokey the Bot celebrates!

Five minutes after Lawson’s goal, Jimmy Filerman sent Connor Rutz in for City’s third goal of the half.

Smokey’s not out of smoke yet!

City went into the locker room with a 3-0 lead.  It rained throughout the fifteen-minute break, then let up as the players returned to the pitch.

The FC Buffalo keepers made their anti-racist statement on their kits.

 

In the end, Detroit City FC won the NISA Independent Cup, Great Lakes Region.

Detroit City FC 2-0-0 6 points, +6 goal differential
Cleveland SC 1-0-1 3 points, -1 goal differential
FC Buffalo 0-0-2 0 points, -5 goal differential.

So far, in 2020, Detroit City FC has played three matches, won them all, scored 8 goals and conceded nothing.

Due to the Center of Disease Control and Protection guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic, sports leagues were cancelled or postponed in March and resumed in July without the benefit of arenas filled with supporters.

United Women’s Soccer (UWS) created a Stadium Showcase Tournament at Keyworth Stadium to provide a competition for Detroit City FC, Midwest United FC, Livonia City FC, and Lansing United under the CDC guidelines.  And the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA) created an Independent Cup tournament regionally for independent teams prior to their Fall 2020 season, also following CDC guidelines.

So when the Detroit City FC Women’s Team played their first match at Keyworth Stadium on July 24, 2020, no supporters attended.  When the Detroit City FC Men’s Team took to the pitch on July 31, 2020 for their first professional match at Keyworth Stadium, no supporters attended.

Though the Northern Guard Supporters (NGS) had to remain outside the stadium for the Women’s inaugural home match and the Men’s first match at Keyworth as a third-tier professional team, their presence would be felt.

For the Women’s match on July 24, 2020, NGS created a massive tifo which covered the central area of the Supporters Section.

 

And they added some new ones along the fence line.

Then, as the Detroit City FC/Lansing United match began, NGS unfurled a tifo along south wall, and set off smoke.

Lots of smoke.

One Northern Guard Supporter was allowed entry in the Supporters Section.  COVID-19 could not spread to or from this supporter.  Smokey the Bot, a smoke-deploying robot stood guard in the section and set off smoke to celebrate City’s goals.

For the Men’s match on July 31, 2020, another large tifo greeted the team, blanketing the center of the Supporters Section.

Instead of a tifo drop on the south wall, a quilt of several tifos, made by individual Northern Guard Supporters, stretched the wall, in what they called Quarantifo.

 

Enjoy each and every one of them.

 

 

And, of course, there was smoke and Smokey the Bot.

The 2020 season held such promise.  The Detroit City FC men’s team had joined the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA), becoming a third-tier professional soccer team, and the women’s team would begin its first season in United Women’s Soccer (UWS).

On January 27, 2020, NISA announced its spring schedule for the eight teams, with each team playing 14 games (a home-and-home series with each team), to run from February 28th to June 13th.

The February 28th opening day featured 1904 FC visiting Stumptown Athletic, Cal United Strikers FC hosting Michigan Stars, our frenemies Chattanooga FC, flew out to California to play Oakland Roots, and Detroit City FC played its first pro match in LA against Los Angeles Force.  Supporters packed the Detroit City Clubhouse to watch the live-stream of the match, which Detroit City FC won, 2-0, on goals by Matt Lewis and Roddy Green.

Then the pandemic hit.

Detroit City FC’s first home game as a Men’s professional team was to be March 21st, against Oakland Roots.  However, due to the pandemic, NISA suspended the season for 30 days on March 12th.  Eight days later, in compliance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, NISA suspended the season until May 10th.  On April 27th, NISA officially cancelled the Spring/Summer season.

On July 1, 2020, NISA announced the Independent Cup, a regional competition of independent teams.  Four regions were created, and the winner for each region would be crowned that region’s Independent Cup champion.

Detroit City entered the Great Lakes Region with former Rust Belt Derby rivals Cleveland SC and FC Buffalo.  Each team would play each other once for the silverware.

The first match featured FC Buffalo and Cleveland SC at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Buffalo on July 29th.  Cleveland won by a score of 3-1.  The next two matches at Keyworth Stadium began with Detroit City FC facing Cleveland SC on July 31, 2020.

Despite the pandemic, the Northern Guard Supporters (NGS) kept busy in preparation for the inaugural women’s season, which, due to the pandemic, resulted in a two-match UWS Stadium Showcase Tournament at Keyworth the previous weekend.  NGS made its presence known by delaying the opening minutes of the Women’s team’s first match with a tifo drop and massive cloud of smoke…

 

…and introduced the newest Northern Guard Supporter, Smokey the Bot, a smoke-dispensing robot that could be operated remotely.  Every Detroit goal scored would be followed by a smoke celebration.

 

 

For this match, Smokey the Bot returned to the Supporters Section.  There was another smokey introduction to the match, and the south wall was nearly covered with a massive display of tifos.

A close up of each one can be foundHERE.

Also, about 30 hours before the match, Detroit City FC announced that a 10% interest in the club would be offered to the public.  Supporters could now invest and hold an ownership stake in Detroit City FC.  By game time, over $500,000 in shares had been purchased.  Here is the promotional video…

 

July 31, 2020
NISA Independent Cup
Great Lakes Region
Detroit City FC 3, Cleveland SC 0
Attendance: 1 (Smokey the Bot)

DCFC Ryan Peterson (Roddy Green) 42′
DCFC Connor Rutz 52′
DCFC Shawn Lawson (Connor Rutz) 65′

 

Big, new tifo for the Men’s Team’s first professional home match.

Smokey the Bot ready with the smoke.

During the pre-game warm-up, Detroit City FC players wore these stunning Black Lives Matter shirts.  The women wore them during their warm-ups, too, and they were so in demand that the team took pre-orders for them for supporters to purchase.

      

Detroit City FC’s Starting Eleven:

Austin Rogers – Goalkeeper
Tendai Jirira – Defender
Steve Carroll – Defender
Sebastian Capozucchi – Defender
Jimmy Filerman – Midfielder
Michael Kafari – Midfielder
Roddy Green – Midfielder
Evans Frimpong – Midfielder
Connor Rutz – Midfielder
Yazeed Matthews – Forward
Ryan Peterson – Forward

When the starting whistle blew, both teams, coaches, and officials, took a silent knee to stand up for social justice for thirty seconds.

Once play resumed, the smoke began.

 

City controlled the first half, having several chances on the Cleveland goal.

 

Finally, the breakthrough.  Evans Frimpong directed a quick ball through to Roddy Green.  Green ran it down the right side then fed a beauty of a pass in the box where Ryan Peterson dove low to head it past Cleveland’s keeper, Conor Cable.

Smokey the Bot launched the celebration.

City went into halftime with the 1-0 lead.

City continued its domination in the second half.  Michael Kafari was taken down just outside of the Cleveland box.  This set up Connor Rutz’s wicked blast to give City a two goal lead.

Smoke billowed in the background, however it was not from the Northern Guard.

City increased its lead in the 65th minute as Connor Rutz sent a pass across to Shawn Lawson, and Lawson did what he does…he scored.

Neighborhood pyrotechnics created a backdrop to this Detroit City FC victory.

Ahead of Sunday’s match against FC Buffalo, the standings looked like this.

Detroit City FC 1-0-0 3 points, +3 goal differential
Cleveland SC 1-0-1 3 points, -1 goal differential
FC Buffalo 0-0-1 0 points, -2 goal differential.

 

An oppressively hot Sunday in historic Keyworth Stadium was the setting for the finals of the 2020 United Women’s Soccer Stadium Showcase.  On Friday, Midwest United FC dominated Livonia City FC in a 9-0 route, while Detroit City FC defeated Lansing United 2-1, setting up today’s matches.

Friday night’s smoke out by the Northern Guard Supporters left scorch marks on the wall.  Another dash of character for this beloved stadium.

The third place game began the afternoon between Livonia City FC and Lansing United.

Daniella Bruce and Neal Ruhl calling the action in this match.

July 26, 2020
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI
Livonia City FC 0, Lansing United 3
Attendance: 0

Lansing Sabrina McNeill (Anna Stinson) 15′
Lansing Kaley Buck (Anna Stinson) 24′
Lansing Kristi Bowden (Sabrina McNeill) 70′

 

               

Above the pitch, a large bird hovered and soared with a much smaller bird in pursuit.

Sabrina McNeill opened the scoring for Lansing United.

 

Livonia City FC looked better than they did in Friday’s match, but it wasn’t enough to offset Lansing United’s skill.

The tournament final was a rematch of last Friday’s friendly in Grand Rapids, Detroit City FC vs Midwest United FC.

July 26, 2020
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI
Detroit City FC 1, Midwest United FC 3
Attendance: 1 (Smokey the Bot)

MUFC Macy Hollingsworth 9′
DCFC Caroline Fleming 12′
MUFC Stitch Currie 54′
MUFC Marti Corby (Regan Dalton) 75′

The lone Northern Guard Supporter, Smokey the Bot, was prepared to ignite the smoke for DCFC goals.

The team debuted these awesome warm-up shirts on Friday.  The reaction was so positive that the next day, pre-orders for these limited edition shirts were taken, with the proceeds to be donated to local charities and player driven initiatives.  I heard that first-day sales of these were pretty amazing. (Of course, one of the orders is mine).

The Starting XI for Detroit City FC were:

Goalkeeper Gabby Gauruder
Defender Grace Philpotts
Defender Margaret Berry
Defender Kim Siebert
Defender Kelsey McClafferty
Midfielder Morgan Reitano
Midfielder Bri Rogers
Midfielder Syd Blomquist
Forward Caroline Fleming
Forward Sarah Huge
Forward Kenna White

Former Detroit City FC player Stefan St. Louis (2012) is an assistant coach for our opponent tonight.

In the 9th minute, Macy Hollingsworth blasted a shot into the back of the Detroit City FC net.  However, three minutes later, Sarah Huge turned a Midwest United defender inside out, fired a shot that Midwest United keeper, Maia Perez, got a hand to, but the ball trickled parallel to the line for Caroline Fleming to kick into the gaping goal.

And Smokey the Bot celebrates!

Like last week in Grand Rapids, the teams went into the half on level ground.

As I left the south end, under the stands, this guy was in the middle of the walkway.  He darted under the fence and climbed the fence surrounding one of the stadium light posts.  Someone came down the walkway, saw me lining up the photo, and said that the squirrel was close to getting on the field during the game.  The squirrel looks a little upset, like we’re intruding on his domain.

Just like in Grand Rapids the week before, Midwest United dominated the second half, scoring two goals to take the 2020 UWS Stadium Showcase tournament.

 

Ever since September 28, 2019, everyone has been excited for the 2020 Detroit City FC Women’s Team to take to the pitch at Keyworth.  The excitement grew with the January 4, 2020 player tryouts at the Detroit City Fieldhouse.  Then, the pandemic, disrupting everything in America.

With so much uncertainty, Coach Sam Piraine, Assistant Coaches Charlie Bell and Jon Evans, Goalkeeping Coach Kyle Willingham, and the twenty-five women who wore the Detroit City FC kit who stuck it out, trained, and participated in these three matches, have fed us with a sampling of what to look forward to.  We thank you all, and we’re proud of you, and soon, we’ll be back together in 2021, with Northern Guard Supporters creating an atmosphere at Keyworth that will torment our opponents and lift your energy on the pitch.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 United Women’s Soccer season was cancelled.  As Michigan moved into Stage 4 of Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s 6-stage Safe Start Plan, a tournament featuring four women’s teams was scheduled for the weekend at Keyworth. Two games were to be played on Friday night, and then on Sunday, the winners of Fridays matches would face each other for the championship, and the other two teams would play a match for third-place.

Even though no fans were permitted to attend, the Northern Guard still made their presence known with their banners, including some new ones.

The event kicked off with Midwest United FC playing Livonia City.

July 24, 2020
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI
Midwest United FC 9, Livonia City 0
Attendance: 0.

MUFC Stitch Curry 17′
MUFC Stitch Curry 22′
MUFC Stitch Curry 32′
MUFC Marti Corby 33′
MUFC Hannah Crum (PK) 45′
MUFC Kaema Amachree 61′
MUFC Macy Wierenga 62′
MUFC Stitch Curry 71′
MUFC Marti Corby 90+’

A familiar face was in the house, as Stefan St. Louis (2012) returned to Michigan to be an assistant coach with Midwest United FC women’s team.

It was a one-sided affair as Midwest United racked up 9 goals; four by Stitch Curry, and five before halftime.

 

The second match featured Detroit City FC’s first home game at Keyworth Stadium, against Lansing United, one of the former NPSL rivals of the men’s team.

July 24, 2020
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI
Detroit City FC 2, Lansing Untied 1
DCFC  Lilian Lucas (Bri Rogers) 20′
LU Rachel Philpotts 53′
DCFC Kenna White 83′
Attendance: 0.

 

During the warm-ups, Detroit City FC teams will be wearing these kick-ass Black Lives Matters/#CityAgainstRacism tops.

   

Tonight’s Starting XI for Detroit City FC’s first match at Keyworth was:

Goalkeeper Becca Przyblyo
Defender Grace Philpotts
Defender Kelsey McClafferty
Defender Margaret Berry
Defender Syd Blomquist
Midfield Kayla Halmaghi
Midfield Lilian Lucas
Midfield Bri Rogers
Forward Tori Singstock
Forward Kenna White
Forward Sarah Huge

Now, due to the pandemic, fans were not allowed into the stadium.  Is that going to stop the Northern Guard Supporters?  Oh no.  This is the first match at Keyworth for the women’s team, and if they weren’t going to be allowed to enjoy the full-on atmosphere of the songs and chants, they were still going to be honored with a tifo and smoke.

Lots of smoke.

 

After several minutes delay, the match resumed.

Lilian Lucas blasts home the opening goal for City in the 20th minute.

Despite the empty supporters’ section, the Northern Guard’s Smokey the Bot, a smoke-deploying robot, provided the post-goal, celebratory smoke.

City led at the end of the first half, 1-0.

Friendly the Bear proves to be the most responsible sports mascot, as he wears his mask.

Rachel Philpott equalized in the 53rd minute for Lansing United.  But in the 83rd minute, Syd Blomquist forced a turnover by the Lansing keeper, allowing Kenna White to notch the game-winner.  Smokey the Bot celebrates.

 

As a result of today’s matches, Sunday will see Livonia City FC take on Lansing United for the third place game, and Detroit City FC face Midwest United FC for the championship.

 

July 17, 2020
Midwest United FC Complex, Kentwood, MI
Midwest United FC 3, Detroit City FC 1

DCFC Torri Swingstock (Sydney Blomquist) 48′
MUFC Grace Labadie 54′
MUFC Macy Wierenga 61′
MUFC Grace Labadie 64′

Attendance: somewhere between 30 and 40.

COVID-19 sucks.  The pandemic caused America to shut down in March to curb the spread of the virus due to the unpreparedness and denial of President Trump.  This included sports leagues being forced to suspend or completely cancel seasons.  United Women’s Soccer (UWS) cancelled the 2020 season on June 9th.  With a slow wave of business openings in July, the sports world began to restart their seasons, playing in empty stadiums.  To salvage some playing opportunity for the women of the UWS, teams put together regional competitions.  Midwest United hosted three matches; vs Corktown AFC, Livonia City FC, and Detroit City FC.

This was Detroit City FC’s first competitive match.  A blistering 90-degree Friday evening in July.

A small gathering of about 30-40 spectators (with myself and maybe five others wearing masks), the environment lacked the noise and engagement that the Northern Guard bring.  So this made for a very weird Detroit City FC environment.  Especially since our Rouge Rovers would have outnumbered them – much like our trips to FC Indiana (minus the corn field).

 

The starting eleven for City were:

Becca Przybylo – Goalkeeper
Sarah Huge – Defender
Kelsey McClafferty – Defender
Grace Philpotts – Left Back
Sydney Blomquist – Right Back
Kayla Halmaghi – Center Midfielder
Lilian Lucas – Left Midfielder
Hannah Becker – Right Midfielder
Caroline Fleming – Forward
Morgan Reitano – Forward
Kenna White – Striker

The first half was exciting, with play pretty level.  City hit the woodwork with a shot, both teams had chances.  After the first 45, the score remained deadlocked at 0-0.

Hannah Becker (below) sends the ball to Syd Blomquist (#7)…

Blomquist then sent in a cross that Tori Singstock (#14) knocked into the back of the Midwest United FC net for the historic first goal.

Unfortunately, about six minutes later, Midwest United equalized, then scored two more within the next ten minutes.

It was our first look at the women’s team, as many players rotated throughout the match.  They played well, and make us more eager to fill Keyworth Stadium and cheer them on once this pandemic is over.

 

 

Behind the scenes, the transition from the classic NPSL season to the NPSL Members Cup was a bit bumpy.  When the season began, it was to be called the NPSL Founders Cup, as the NPSL was going to grow a professional league for the 2020 season.  Eleven teams were slated to be in the tournament, divided into two regions.

East Region:
Chattanooga FC
Detroit City FC
Miami FC
Miami United FC
Milwaukee Torrent
New York Cosmos

West Region:
ASC San Diego
Cal FC
California United Strikers FC
FC Arizona
Oakland Roots SC

On March 2, 2019, California United Strikers FC withdrew from the Founders Cup.  Three months later, they were accepted into the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA).

On June 27, 2019, Oakland Roots SC withdrew from the NPSL Founders Cup.

On July 24, 2019, Miami FC joined the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA).  This forced the NPSL to rebrand the tournament from the Founders Cup to the NPSL Members Cup, and realign with the removal of some teams and addition of others.  The tournament became a six-team home-and-home competition, best record take-all format featuring:

Chattanooga FC
Detroit City FC
Michigan Stars FC
Milwaukee Torrent
Napa Valley 1839 FC
New York Cosmos

On August 15, 2019, Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, and Oakland Roots SC were accepted as members of NISA.

To summarize:

FINAL RECORD 8-1-1 = 25 Points
First Place/Champions!

Goals For:  17
5 -Yazeed Matthews 
2 – Cyrus Saydee, Danny Deakin, Ryan Peterson
1 – Macrello Borges, Stephen Carroll, Jalen Crisler, Richard Bryan, Shawn Lawson, Own Goal by Milwaukee

Goals Against: 4
Clean Sheets: 6

Individual Awards:
Yazeed Matthews – Golden Ball Award (MVP)
Nate Steinwascher – Golden Glove Award (Best Keeper)

NPSL Members Cup Starting XI:
Trevor James – Coach
Nate Steinwascher – Goalkeeper
Stephen Carroll – Defender
Yazeed Matthews – Forward

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