AFC Ann Arbor enter their final regular season match of the season with it all to play for. The Mighty Oak will host Toledo Villa FC on Friday, July 13, at 6 PM. With just a point separating them from Grand Rapids FC for the final playoff spot, a win is the only way to secure a spot in the playoffs. While AFCAA can’t win the Great Lakes Championship for the third season in a row, the destiny is in The Mighty Oak’s hands when it comes to making the postseason for another season.
This will be the second meeting in club history with AFC and TVFC, the first coming on the road and ending in a 4-1 victory in favor of AFCAA. Through thirteen matches, AFCAA have 27 points along with eight wins. They also have the second-highest goal differential in the Great Lakes at +13, a sign of the solid attacking prowess The Mighty Oak have shown, especially as of late.
Speaking of the attackers, The Mighty Oak have been led by a very balanced set of players. Jordan Montoya currently leads the team in goals with five, but five more players have at least two goals. Defensive, both of the most recent starting center-backs, Matt Braem and Ben Thornton, also have a goal. The two of them, along with the full back play of the likes of Stephen Turnbull and Marlon de Freitas, have been at the helm of six clean sheets and five games of just one goal conceded.
After some early season struggles, Toledo have recovered with a couple of big wins in their inaugural season in the NPSL Great Lakes. Their first win came at the expense of FC Columbus and, more recently, they topped Michigan Stars 4-2, also at home. Toledo sit seventh in the eight-team division, but this opening season has provided plenty of positive moments to build off of for next season. In terms of goal scorers, Josh Dickinson leads Toledo with three, including a brace against Stars. Jake Kirchoff-Sleet has two and the lone goal for TVFC against The Mighty Oak.