Ann Arbor Downs Detroit 3-1 Reclaiming First Place

 A brace from James Vaughan helped Ann Arbor earn a 3-1 road victory over Detroit City FC

A brace from James Vaughan helped Ann Arbor earn a 3-1 road victory over Detroit City FC

At the second attempt, AFC Ann Arbor came to Hamtramck Tuesday to take on Detroit City FC in NPSL play. 

The match was originally scheduled for Friday July 7th, but due to extreme weather leaving the field in unplayable condition, the match had to be abandoned with just 5 minutes gone on the clock. 

Although the match was delayed, the implications remained high as the top two sides in the divisions looked to battle for position atop the Great Lakes table. 

The first half resumed in the 5th minute Tuesday, and from the off Ann Arbor were on the attack, going close through Kyle Breitmeyer. 

However it was Detroit who made the most of their chances, scoring on the stroke of half time to take a 1-0 lead into the break. 

Going down seemed to wake Ann Arbor up offensively. First it was Yuri Farkas cutting inside on the right, but his effort hit the post and stayed out. 

In the 57th minute, AFC found a lifeline. With a free kick from 25 yards out, James Vaughan stepped up and curled a beautiful free kick into the bottom corner to level the match at 1-1. 

Just 7 minutes later it was Audi of Ann Arbor Man of the Match Alec Lasinski's turn. The former DCFC striker latched onto a loose ball in the box to give his home town side the lead against his former club, 2-1. 

With 25 minutes to play, The Mighty Oak sat in deep to defend, looking to put the game out of reach on the counter attack. 

In the 90th minute, substitute Kwesi Allen did just that. "Jep" slid in behind the defense and rounded the keeper before being dragged down in the box, earning a late penalty for The Mighty Oak. 

Again it was Vaughan who stepped up to take the spot kick. As cool as you like, Vaughan nestled the ball in the back of the net to secure a critical 3 points away from home. 

After a hard fought road victory, Coach Rudland lauded the mentality in the side, especially in the second half.

"That was a big part of our half time talk was 'Hey, mentally we've got to stay with one another here." He said. "We've got to stay together and we'll work through this."

Speaking to the tactical adjustments, Coach Rudland felt that the substitutes helped shift the momentum for Ann Arbor, singling out the Man of the Match Performance by Alec Lasinski.

"When we brought Alec on, which we knew we wanted as our first change in the second half, he was fantastic." 

The result sees AFC Ann Arbor return to the top of the NPSL Great Lakes Division Table with 31 points from 12 league matches. 

AFC Ann Arbor play the final away match of the regular season as they take on Grand Rapids FC, Friday night at 7:30, before heading back to Hollway Field on Monday for the final home match of the regular season versus Michigan Stars.