Photograph by staff photographer Nate Benson
In the early portions of a season, there are plenty of team aspects that are fair to question. If you were to question the resilience of this FC Buffalo side, however, you’d be bonkers.
Alexander Rouse and Mike Reidy each netted game-tying goals as the Blitzers twice rallied to earn a share of the points available in Sunday’s tilt versus AFC Cleveland at Robert E. Rich All-High Stadium.
AFC Cleveland admittedly held the first 20 minutes of play by the jugular but failed to convert. The Blitzers turned the play and won several free kicks and corners, however it was the Royals of Cleveland who converted first as Vinny Bell capitalized on a turnover to dribble his way into the FCB net, sending the visitors into the locker rooms up, 1-0.
The lead lasted all of 19 minutes. Rouse collected a pass from Reidy and sent one bounding into the net to even the score at one.
The 82nd minute deflated the hopes of many Buffalo fans as Taylor Johnston got the Blitzers defense to soften just enough to put Cleveland back up top, 2-1. That melancholy was not true-to-form, though, at least for Buffalo fans. Soon after, the red card came out as Cleveland’s Anthony Bahadur received his second yellow within minutes to seal his team’s fate to 10 men. FCB substitution John Grabowski proved head coach Dan Krzyzanowicz quite the soothsayer. The third-year Blitzer send a cross just outside the 18-yard-box, which Reidy snared before taking a deft touch or two. The Colgate player found the net with a seeing-eye shot, proving the crucial tally in the 2-2 draw.
FC Buffalo stayed true to their roots, only earning a point despite outshooting the opposition, 19-10. After an early run on fouls falling lopsided on the home team, only four more fouls were called on Buffalo than Cleveland (10-6). The Blitzers won corner kicks, 7-3, and were not whistled for an offside in comparison to the Royals’ three.
Buffalo’s back-in-action on Sunday at 1p versus Greater Binghamton FC. It’s a home match and the boys want all the fans back, bringing friends.
FC Buffalo: Dehond, McFayden, Hall (Grabowski 74′), Snelgrove, Rinow (Johnson 58′), Boughton, Stedman (Cwiklinski 58′), Faga, Reidy, Tiedt (Zelko 45′), Rouse (Tor 83′).