03 April 2014

Talking in the Rain: Calling 2014's USL PRO vs. MLS Reserve League opener

One week after hosting a pregame show for the New York Red Bulls first team, I got to call play-by-play for the Red Bulls Reserves on Sunday, as they played the Dayton Dutch Lions in a crossover game that counted in the standings both for Dayton in USL PRO (the third division of American soccer) and in the MLS Reserve League (now in its final season as teams integrate with USL PRO, either via affiliation or by fielding their own minor-league team).

This particular reserve game took place at 25,000-seat Red Bull Arena, kicking off one hour after the Red Bulls' regular game against Chivas USA. By the time it kicked off, in the rain, there were not a whole lot of people in the building, and I was working the game solo. So it presented some challenges.

But I had researched Dayton as thoroughly as possible, talking to a Columbus Crew coach who gave insight on the seven players his club had loaned to Dayton and to the head coaches of both Dayton and the Red Bulls Reserves before the game. So I knew the players and personnel and had a great time calling the game:

Looking back, I'm frustrated at myself for losing focus on the plays in the second half that led to New York's goals (particularly the set pieces) and will be alert to that moving forward. But it's always good to be in a play-by-play setting, and hopefully there is more to come!

Dayton Dutch Lions (0-1) vs. New York Red Bulls Reserves (1-1)
March 30, 2014 -- Red Bull Arena, Harrison, NJ
USL PRO / MLS Reserve League

Scoring Summary:
NY -- Michael Bustamante 1 (Connor Lade 1, Eric Stevenson 1) 51
NY -- Eric Stevenson 1 (Marius Obekop 2, Arun Basuljevic 1) 61
NY -- Matt Miazga 1 (Eric Stevenson 2) 66

Dayton Dutch Lions -- Matt Williams, Taylor Bowlin (Ross Friedman 70), Brock Granger, Kevan George, Shane Smith, Shintaro Harada, Sebastien Thurière (Fifi Baiden 64), Eddie Hertsenberg (Aaron Schoenfeld 53), Cameron Vickers (Joe Broekhuizen 70), Ryan Finley (Matt Walker 64), Eli Garner.
Substitutes Not Used: Brad Stuver, Eric Kissinger.

New York Red Bulls Reserves -- Ryan Meara, Chris Duvall, Matt Miazga, Kevin Politz (Brandon Tetro 76), Ambroise Oyongo, Connor Lade, Eric Stevenson, Michael Bustamante, Arun Basuljevic (Malcolm Dixon 86), Chris Lema, Marius Obekop.
Substitutes Not Used: Santiago Castaño.

Misconduct Summary:
DAY -- Shintaro Harada (caution) 47
DAY -- Fifi Baiden (caution) 74
DAY -- Aaron Schoenfeld (caution) 88

Referee: Robert Sibiga
Referee's Assistants: T.J. Zablocki; Zeno Cho
Fourth Official: Ashraf Kamel

Weather: Rain-and-46 degrees
All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial

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