Coming into Sunday’s match, both MNUFC2 and Chicago Fire II were hoping to continue in their winning ways, as Minnesota brought a three-game winning streak to the table, while Chicago's last match against Philadelphia Union II resulted in their first W of the season.
Where the Loons previous two wins saw them take both in dominant fashion, Sunday’s match proved to be quite different, as both squads put in tough, physical efforts in the match. In fact, Chicago back Justin Reynolds and Minnesota’s Nabilai Kibunguchy both collected two yellow cards apiece, ending both of their nights before the first half came to a close.
The keepers, in particular, put in the work throughout this match. Loons goalkeeper Fred Emmings held strong throughout, as did Chicago’s net minder Chris Brady. Despite nearly doubling the amount of shots on goal with eighteen compared to Chicago’s nine, the Loons couldn’t convert an equalizer. After going the full ninety minutes, the young Loons would find themselves in a situation that they hadn't experienced before, as a shootout would be needed to break this 0-0 stalemate.
After the first seven rounds weren’t enough to decide a winner, Emmings started off the eighth round with a fortunate save of Chicago’s Diegoarmando Alvarado’s shot to the bottom right corner, bouncing up and ricocheting off the top crossbar but, thankfully, landing in front of the goal. Then, with the opportunity to seal the deal, homegrown defender Devin Padelford would put the nail in the coffin with a shot to the bottom left corner, securing the win for MNUFC2 and continuing a winning streak that has now reached four in a row. Next up, MNUFC2 will head home to Allianz Field this Saturday, May 14, where they will host Houston Dynamo 2 and try to add another to their streak