5/31/18 Premier Park, Balch Spring,TX
FC Denton were able to overcome a tough Crusaders S.F.A. in the semifinal for the D.1B championship in a match that had to be decided through a penalty shootout, and will go on to the final, for their 8th championship in 4 years!
The game started with Denton controlling much of the possession and finding it difficult to get through an aggressive Crusaders team, while not being threatened often on the other end of the field. The half ended goal-less with neither team being rewarded for their efforts.
Bryan Jacinto and Sheyin Duniya were introduced in the second half, giving Denton
fresh legs and added speed to the flanks, as the team continued to control much of the game. The breakthrough came in the 56th minute when Jacinto was viciously taken down inside the box, after a penetrating run through the Crusader defense, and was awarded a penalty. Irvin Pinales stepped up to take the PK and saw his shot saved but was able to put away the rebound to give FC Denton the 1-0 lead.
Crusaders continued to pressure as they looked for the equalizer and it finally came in the 80th minute when a Crusader forward was able to break through the Denton back line and place a looping shot into the back of the net; drawing things level. The rest of the game was spent in Crusaders' half with Denton throwing everything forward to find the game-winner; creating many chances, including a powerful shot from Michael Gonzalez in the 87th that was denied by the crossbar. After 90 minutes and with both teams drawn level; the game would be decided by a penalty shootout.
Crusaders missed their first attempt and had their second attempt denied by a huge
save from captain, Corbin Rodriguez and with goals from Ewahia "Lucky" Amhanesi, Irvin Pinales, Preston Baker and Michael Gonzalez; FC Denton won the shootout 4-3 and booked their place in Sunday's final for the championship and a chance to earn promotion to the top division of the league!
FC Denton will attempt to win the club's 8th championship, Sunday June 3rd, 5PM back at Premier Park, facing off against Rangers FC, who were able to knock out division leaders F.F. Premier in a hard fought 2-1 victory.
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