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Detroit City FC ends NISA fall regular season with scoreless draw, posts third straight shutout

Larry O'Connor
The Detroit News

Detroit City FC put 11 players behind the ball and dared the New York Cosmos to score in a 0-0 National Independent Soccer Association stalemate Wednesday at Mitchell Athletic Complex in Uniondale, New York.

The austerity tactic worked as DCFC (1-2-1) concluded the NISA fall regular campaign with its third straight shutout. DCFC defeated New Amsterdam 3-0 last Saturday and was held to a 0-0 tie by the Michigan Stars Aug. 22.

DCFC's Stephen Carroll

DCFC will take part in the NISA Fall Tournament, which starts Sept. 21 at a yet-to-be-determined neutral site. The fall showcase will be carried by beIN Sports.

On Wednesday, the Cosmos enjoyed a vast majority of possession but Le Rouge absorbed the attack and yielded few chances on goal.

Jean Antoine started in net for DCFC while former Ohio State standout Parker Seigfried, who joined the club this week from USL League Georgia Tormenta, took over in the second half.

Defender Stephen Carroll snuffed out the Cosmos’ best scoring chance, racing back to block Danny Szetela’s shot from about 10 yards out in the 23rd minute. About five minutes later, the Cosmos’ Vincenzo Candela nodded a ball on frame that Antoine easily collected.

DCFC’s best opportunity came in the 85th minute when substitute Ryan Peterson found space down the left flank, but Evans Frimpong couldn’t reach the speedy winger’s cross.

“Obviously, we knew it wasn’t going to be an easy game,” said defender Tendai Jirira in a postmatch interview on DCFC’s Twitter account. “We traveled a long journey (9½-hour bus ride) coming here to play. We tried to play the way we wanted to play, but obviously it wasn’t easy but we had to battle through it. Everybody had to chip in — from the forwards to the goalkeeper. ...

“Now we have to look forward and get ready for the (NISA) tournament, get stronger, faster so we’re ready.”

Assistant coach Javi Bautista managed the team while GM and head coach Trevor James remained in Detroit as a precautionary measure due to COVID concerns, a DCFC spokesman said.

The encounter was initially scheduled for Aug. 29 but was postponed when DCFC players boycotted to protest racial injustice in the aftermath of Jacob Blake’s shooting by police. The Cosmos supported Le Rouge players’ stance and other NISA teams followed suit by postponing matches.