Match Recap: Peachtree City Top Memphis City For Third Time in 2018
After slipping in back-to-back matches to close their road stretch at 2-2-0, Peachtree City found themselves slipping down the table and out of the playoff race. If they wanted to turn the season around and get back into the hunt, MOBA needed to take advantage of this two-match set with Memphis City FC, who are last in the division, and MOBA had beaten twice earlier in the season. With the first meeting on Thursday, Peachtree City did just that.
Knowing what was at stake going up against a team that has already been eliminated from the playoff hunt, the opening minutes of the game went pretty heavily in favor of the home side, as MOBA were controlling possession, and it was Jerren Nixon who had the first shot of the night, but it was deflected and sent just over the cross bar. A minute later, however, Memphis City has a pristine opportunity to take the first lead, as a close range header was touched by Dziedzic just enough to push it into the post before he collected it on the line. Six minutes later, it was Peachtree City who jumped out to the early lead, as Nixon intercepted a lazy pass from the Memphis midfield before sprinting down into the box and pulling three Memphis defenders with him. As he closed in on the end-line, Nixon saw a completely undefended John Cozine on the opposite side and just played a simple ball across to him, and goalkeeper Christian Knight had no chance of stopping the shot. After the opening goal, momentum began to shift in favor of Peachtree City as possession was really dominated by the Yellow and Black. In the twenty-eighth minute, however, Memphis' Jarad Greene had a go from close, but Dziedzic once again held strong, and his save went out for a Memphis throw. Off the ensuing throw, Trenton Whitley found Greene again, who danced through the box for shooting again, this time beating Dziedzic and leveling the score at one apiece. Normally, a goal that would have hurt MOBA's spirits, Peachtree City did not let it faze them, as they continued to dominate the rest of the first half, nearly taking the lead back on a number of different opportunities. In the forty-fourth minute, their wishes were answered. Deep in the MOBA half, Shawn Sanon did a brilliant job dispossessing the Memphis midfielder before sending it up field to Emgi Gousse, who immediately turned and made a sprint toward goal. In a similar fashion to Nixon, as Gousse drew nearer to the end-line, he played a sublime ball across the box to Morgan Hackworth, who was just too fast for the defender on his back. Hackworth took the shot first time and buried it, and MOBA retook the lead going into the break.
The second half was a different story, as it was just completely dominated by MOBA from beginning to end. From the defenders to the forwards, everybody filled their role perfectly, and Memphis saw little to no opportunity to level the score. Peachtree City saw a couple of different chances to add a third, but things always got a little hectic inside the eighteen, and the shot never went in. Konrad Dziedzic continued to play brilliantly, making a gorgeous save right after the half started to keep his team in front before the field players really took over. All around, it was just a better, more consistent performance from a Peachtree City side that has struggled to keep matches going in their favor. Following the match on the 16th against Tri-Cities, this match was great sign for what is to come in the second half of this season, as MOBA looked miles beyond where they were in that match. With a rematch coming on Saturday, it will be interesting to see how Memphis, who are still without a win on the season, respond to their seventh loss, as well as how Peachtree City respond to their third win of the campaign.