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No Mercy in the North: NPSL North Matchweek Seven Recap

by on 20 June 2018

While no team has been mathematically eliminated from playoff contention, for all intents and purposes, the NPSL North is now a four team race. Assuming VSLT wins its rain-postponed game versus La Crosse Aris, the Sky Blues will sit four points back of the top spot, while Duluth holds third place, seven points behind leaders Minneapolis City. The Crows look to be running away with the conference title, but there could be some movement in the battle for the second playoff spot.

Sioux Falls Thunder 0, Minnesota TwinStars 2
June 13, 2018
Minnetonka High School (Minnetonka, Minn.)

Chase Wright continued to tear up the North with a double against struggling Sioux Falls, as TwinStars tried to keep pace in the playoff race. The visiting Thunder managed to keep their hosts off the board for over an hour, but Wright’s 68th and 74th minute goals were all the Dragons needed for a midweek win.

Minneapolis City SC 1, Minnesota TwinStars 0
June 14, 2018
Prairie Seeds Academy (Brooklyn Park, Minn.)

The drama did not subside once the long-awaited rescheduled game between Minneapolis City and Minnesota TwinStars kicked off. Questionable referee decisions and poor sportsmanship marked this as an ugly match, one which eventually spiraled out of control. The lone goal came courtesy of a Martin Browne Jr. penalty in the 7th minute after Will Kidd was taken down from behind in the box. After a thirty minute lightning delay, the match turned more and more physical with a fracas erupting around the 75th minute. The Crows held on for the win and extended their lead at the top of the table.

La Crosse Aris 0, Dakota Fusion 5
June 15, 2018
Jim Gotta Stadium (Moorhead, Minn.)

If nothing else, Dakota managed to pull its goal differential back to even against La Crosse. This measure is likely to be important in deciding which teams make the playoffs, though it is unlikely Dakota move that far up the standings. Five different players featured on the scoresheet, starting with Jade Johnson’s 25th minute hit. Benjamin Prochniak doubled the lead just before halftime and Ncengetere Jacques made it 3-0 not long after play resumed. The 62nd minute saw a George Gauld strike, and less than ten minutes later Jaret Mowrey notched the final Dakota tally.

Up next:
La Crosse Aris at Duluth FC, June 20
Dakota Fusion at VSLT FC, June 20

Minnesota TwinStars 1, Med City FC 1
June 16, 2018
Rochester Regional Stadium (Rochester, Minn.)

In its third game in four days, TwinStars managed to steal a draw away to Med City. Claudio Repetto continued his hot streak and scored the early opener, putting the Medics up after just seven minutes. The hosts held on for the next hour, but Adama Keita equalized for the Dragons in the 72nd minute. The result dents Med City’s hopes of making the playoffs and eliminated both teams from contention in the all-Minnesota cup competition introduced by Minneapolis City’s supporter group.

Up next:
Minnesota TwinStars at Minneapolis City SC, June 20
Med City FC at Sioux Falls Thunder, June 20

Sioux Falls Thunder 1, Minneapolis City SC 6
June 16, 2018
Osseo High School (Osseo, Minn.)

Minneapolis City shredded their South Dakota visitors to give them the best goal differential in the country and extend its lead at the top of the conference table. Will Kidd opened the scoring in the 5th minute with Whitney Browne doubling the lead ten minutes later. Rafael Domingos’ thunderous free kick into the top corner cut that lead in half, but the Crows never relented. Martin Browne Jr. put away his second penalty of the week in the 32nd minute and his brother tallied his second of the game in the 38th. Juan Louis surprised the Thunder keeper from a bad angle to make it 5-1.The sixth goal came two minutes from full time courtesy of Nick Hutton.

Up next:
Minneapolis City SC vs. Minnesota TwinStars, June 20
Sioux Falls Thunder vs. Med City FC, June 20

Duluth FC 1, VSLT FC 0
June 16, 2018
James Griffin High School (St. Paul, Minn.)

Duluth once again managed to make the table more interesting, getting revenge over VSLT for a defeat of the same scoreline a week ago. It also brings the Bluegreens even on points with the Sky Blues, although the latter has a game in hand. Nevertheless, Duluth was able to bolster their chances of making the playoffs again thanks to David Rice’s 80th minute winner.

Up next:
Duluth FC vs. La Crosse Aris, June 20
VSLT FC vs. Dakota Fusion, June 20

 

NPSL North Standings

Club Played Won Drawn Lost GD Points Possible
Minneapolis City 9 7 2 0 21 23 38
VSLT 8 5 1 2 4 16 34
Duluth 9 4 4 1 8 16 31
TwinStars 9 4 2 3 5 14 29
Med City 9 3 3 3 5 12 27
Dakota Fusion 9 3 3 3 12 27
Sioux Falls 9 1 1 7 -8 4 19
La Crosse Aris 8 0 0 8 -35 0 18

 


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