Troy United traveled to Washington Township to face off against the Michigan Stars U23 team for a rare late Sunday afternoon game. With only three games left in the season for Troy and these two teams only separated by 1 point in the standings, this game was crucial for both teams.
Troy United was looking to get the foul taste of the 9-0 loss on Thursday out, and they started the game quickly. Clayton Lafayette and Nathan Boos started a beautiful passing sequence downfield in the 4th minute that led to Mateo Phillips getting a shot on goal, but not enough to get it into the net.
An 8th minute turnover just outside the own Troy box gave Stars a great opportunity on net, but the ball hit the post and rolled out of play.
Just two minutes later, Boos had a terrific shot on goal, but the ball went just wide. Still 0-0 early, but both teams traded good opportunities to start.
Neither team took control of the game in the first 30 minutes, as both teams traded opportunities.
Troy got their first free-kick opportunity of the game in the 37th minute. A Phillips kick was put into the box, that Fickenworth headed into the back of the net to give Troy a 1-0 lead with less than ten minutes left in the half.
Troy didn’t have to wait long for their next opportunity on net, as just two minutes later, they put two more shots on net that the Stars goalkeeper made fantastic saves on.
A huge Andrew Swancutt save right before half kept the score at 1-0 as the referee blew the halftime whistle.
The second half started slower than the first, but after ten minutes, both teams started trading shots on net.
Lafayette had a great shot on net in the 54th minute that was deflected off the Stars goalkeeper. This led to a counterattacking opportunity for Stars that was only kept out of the net by another outstanding Swancutt kick save.
Phillips had the ball in the back of the net in the 56th minute, but the official raised his flag for offsides.
Troy had two more great shots on net in the 60th and 61st minute, but once again, the Stars goalkeeper made great saves.
Troy couldn’t get their second goal of the night until the 64th minute when Boos fired a shot from just outside the box into the top corner of the net. An absolute beauty of a strike gave Troy a 2-0 lead.
Not even two minutes later, Francisco Alvarez-Calderon crossed the ball beautifully to Phillips, who slid the ball past the goalkeeper to give Troy a 3-0 lead.
Then in the 69th minute, Brayden Stavros put another shot on net and hit the post. Troy United was putting on the pressure, and the goal opportunities were coming quickly for them. The Stars backline looked lost and needed help to stop Troy.
On a free-kick opportunity in the 85th minute, Jacob Lindberg shot the ball past the Stars wall and put the ball in the back of the net to give Troy a 4-0 lead.
Troy needed this type of performance after a 9-0 loss on Thursday. They just went out there and proved that it was nothing more than an anomaly.
The full-time whistle blew, and Troy walked away with a 4-0 victory. Andrew Swancutt picked up the first clean sheet of his career for the black and gold, and it was the team's first on the season.
Troy now has two games remaining on their 2023 schedule, one at home and one on the road. They will head on the road to Walled Lake Central High School on Saturday to face off against Michigan Jaguars. Kickoff is set for 7 pm.