MOBA Moment in History: Tri-Cities Excitement

First-ever's. Late Drama. Fighting Adversity. We watch sports for the excitement, the idea of everything being unknown. Nobody has any idea how a game is going to end, or who the hero is going to be. Nobody knows if something that's never been done before will happen in that game. And that is why we watch. Which explains in great detail why the battle with Tri-Cities Otters FC was one of the most incredible series of the season.

Coming off of a heart-breaking 2-1 loss to Mississippi Brilla FC in MOBA's first ever match, Peachtree City wanted redemption as they headed to Johnson City to take on Tri-Cities. That desire for victory showed tremendously as MOBA struck first in the 11th minute to take the lead over the Otters off an Omar Jarun goal. The home team would not sit idly by and accept defeat once more, and they struck back in the 41st minute, knotting the game at 1. It seemed almost inevitable that the game would go into the half 1-1, but Jarun had other plans. Bryson Asher took the free kick, and Nick Hague headed the ball to Omar Jarun who turned and drilled it into the net for his second goal of the game, and Peachtree City would not give up this lead as they had in the past as they took the 2-1 victory.

4 games and 360+ minutes later, MOBA needed a change pace, as they suffered four straight losses on the road. Peachtree City finally made it home, only to fall to the Carolina Dynamo in the home opener. Something needed to click, and click something did, as the Otters came to Starr's Mill to meet the team who had stolen victory on the road earlier in the season. Tri-Cities came in looking to win, but MOBA and Omar Jarun didn't like that plan. On the first possession of the game, Jarun raced into the box and drilled a shot that just clipped off the goal post. Peachtree City continued the pressure, but couldn't find the goal they needed, and the game went into the half tied 0-0. The Otters finally found a rhythm, as they seemed to have something of an advantage in the tight competition. 86 minutes had passed and still no score. 0-0 seemed like an unavoidable outcome, but once again, Jarun  had other plans. MOBA took a free kick near the mid-line, and the ball was worked around until it finally came into the possession of Nick Spielman. Spielman went to work, trying to find an opening, but when the defense would not budge, Nick knew he had to give the ball off. The field awareness of Spielman was truly on display in this run, as Omar Jarun came in sprinting, and Spielman just tapped the ball off to his left, Jarun swept in, and drilled it into the back of the net, catching the entirety of the Otter defense off-guard. At this stage, MOBA seemed to have clinched the sweep of the Otters, but that faded quickly as Tri-Cities was awarded a free-kick just outside the box, which was quickly converted into an Otter goal. Minutes passed, and both teams seemed to have burned themselves out. All except for Jessey Hein, whose desire to win took control, as he was given the ball near midfield, and he immediately took off for the net. The fans erupted in support as they saw the opportunity, and Hein fed off that excitement, as he charged onward, and ripped a laser into the net in the 90'+4. The stadium exploded, and every MOBA man on the pitch charged Hein to show their admiration of his effort and heart. The game ended moments later and Peachtree City went home ecstatic having finally earned their first-ever home victory.

Sports are all about excitement and unpredictability. Without it, we'd all be stuck watching horribly predictable movies. And no sport emphasizes late-game drama, game-winners, and pride more than association football. Peachtree City MOBA sure had its fair share of dramatic games this 2016 PDL season, but none more dramatic and exciting than the series with Tri-Cities, in which MOBA earned their first ever win, home win, and home goal in team history.



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