RECAP: The Miami FC 2 Beats Duluth FC 3-0, Advances to NPSL National Final

Jul 28, 2018

MIAMI (July 28, 2018) - The Miami FC 2 hosted Duluth FC in the NPSL National Semifinal on Saturday night, coming out with a convincing 3-0 victory. With the win, the Orange and Blue advances to the NPSL National Final, where it will take on FC Motown on Saturday, August 4.

The first 15 minutes of the match were a masterclass by Miami, with the Orange and Blue camping in Duluth's half of the field. If it weren't for All-Conference and Region Duluth FC goalkeeper Jan Hoffelner, who came up with a whopping 10 saves through the match, Miami could've had a bevy of goals early on.

Hoffelner's heroics kept the match scoreless for much of the first half, but in the 35th minute, Miami's stellar run of play was finally rewarded. Midfielder Ariel Martínez got loose down the left channel and whipped in a cross to the middle of the box, where striker Jaime Chávez was barreled into and earned a penalty kick. Martínez took responsibility of the penalty kick, ran up to the spot and powered his shot past an outstretched Hoffelner. 

Miami went into halftime up by a single goal, though it deserved to have a larger lead considering its offensive performance to that point in the match. 

In the second half, the Orange and Blue employed a more methodical approach, defending well and consistently springing counter attacks from its own half. 

While many missed opportunities came to pass, the insertion of midfielder Tomas Greco in the 68th minute changed the complexion of the match. 

Greco's incisive passing ability played a huge role in Miami netting its sorely needed second goal of the match in the 75th minute, when Greco took a corner kick and accurately picked out right back Sean McFarlane among a crowd of defenders. McFarlane slingshotted his header past Hoffelner to give Miami the insurance goal it was after.

In the final minute of the match, Miami extended its lead once more to make it 3-0 in favor of the Orange and Blue. Winger Don Smart caressed a through ball into McFarlane's path, which continued deep into the box. McFarlane laced a pass across the box that midfielder Jeff Michaud acrobatically guided into the top left corner of the net. 

The Miami FC 2 will now hit the road for the NPSL National Final against FC Motown on Saturday, August 4. Stay connected with the Miami FC on Social Media @TheMiamiFC for updates all week long. 

Quick Hits

Starting XI
GK: Vega
DEF: Polak, Trafford, Bernstein, McFarlane
MID: Martínez (68' - Greco), Steele, Mares
FWD: Tyrpak (77' - Craft), Chávez (82' - Michaud) , Suárez (77' - Smart)

Goals
36' - Martínez (MIA) | Penalty Kick
75' - McFarlane (MIA) | Assisted by Greco
90' - Michaud (MIA) | Assisted by McFarlane

Bookings
84' - McFarlane (MIA) | Yellow Card
90'+2' - Tyrer (DUL) | Yellow Card