The middle of Friday night’s EC Derby match in Erie was all FC Buffalo, but sandwiched around it were just enough moments to keep the team from full points.
The Admirals (3-1-3) got an 83rd minute back post equalizer from reserve Sam Dorf to spoil a long-held Blitzers (1-4-4) lead and send the match to a 1-1 draw.
It was the only way Erie could get past FCB keeper Kareem Gray (Trinidad/Canisius College) who was absolutely splendid between the sticks. Gray made key save after key save although the Admirals found the underside of the bar within the first few moments of the contest. The almost goal appeared to be across the line, but that near miss was “redeemed” in stoppage time when FCB midfielder Cory Cwiklinski was taken down in the box in what almost certainly should’ve been a penalty kick (a notion proffered by some of the Admirals staff after the match!).
On the other end, Admirals goalie Danny Mudd played his best match in the history of his time rivaling FC Buffalo. Mudd was able to short circuit breakaway opportunities from Chris Walter and Alexander Rouse, though a 36th minute tally from Gary Boughton gave the Blitzers a 1-0 lead that stood for almost 50 minutes. Rouse assisted with a full-width cross.
Pablo Ordonez again impressed in an inspired 20 minutes of play off the bench. The left-footed wonder nearly scored off a free kick in stoppage time by Mudd leapt to push the ball away from the upper 90.
The Blitzers received tremendous defense from center back Josiah Snelgrove and Josh Hall, while FCB matched the physical play of the tall Admirals squad with equal parts gutsy play from Jake Rinow, Chris Walter and Ryan Walter. All three received yellow cards. It was Chris Walter’s third and Ryan Walter’s fourth, meaning Ryan Walter will miss Saturday, June 30’s home finale versus Detroit City FC (7 p.m. Robert E. Rich All-High Stadium).
Mudd and Gray were named Men of the Match.
FCB: Gray; Rinow (Carcaterro 78′), Snelgrove, Hall, Zelko; Boughton (Ordonez 77′), C. Walter, R. Walter, Reidy; Rouse (Grabowski 82′), Tiedt (Cwiklinski 65′)