Match Recap –Memphis 901 vs Louisville City – 10/21/2023 – 2023 Playoffs
Updated: Oct 23
The playoffs. This is when Louisville City shines. In these win-or-go-home matches, LouCity has historically found ways to win. However, this year felt different and not in a good way. Despite comfortably being in the playoff picture, LouCity failed to secure home field for the first round and had little momentum behind them after a terrible loss to NM, a draw to last-place Hartford, and a dismal display against rivals Tampa. There was credible pessimism given the team’s form. But the playoffs are a whole different ballgame. The regular season is in the rearview. It’s a fresh start. And that start of LouCity was down in Memphis. The boys in purple secured a draw last trip to TN and fell 3-1 to MEM in their last meeting. It’s make-or-break time as the squad gets one more push to define how history will remember them.
18’ – Cameron Lancaster
By The Numbers
After the deflating results leading into the playoffs and the concession in under a minute, things were feeling a little bleak for Louisville City early in the match. But the squad never gave up. And that determination paid off as they clawed back a goal and took the match to PKs where Morados prevailed. “My hope is that the players take from this whether we’re up a goal or whether we’re down a goal, we have an ability to stay in the game,” said Coach Danny Cruz. “I can’t speak highly enough of the group — the fight. There’s been a lot of ups. There’s been a lot of downs.” The downs Coach Cruz mentioned were plenty, considering the club’s history and standard. But as they said multiple times to the media before their first postseason match, it’s a clean slate. The boys in purple did not let the misses of the regular season plague their minds.
It was not LouCity’s greatest performance. Memphis dictated much of the play and outshot Louisville. Aside from the early concession, LOU’s defense, arguably their best trait, put on a memorable performance to keep the team in the match. “While I don’t think anyone would say that was our best attacking performance — we didn’t create as we’d like — after the first 70 seconds or whatever, we defended,” said Sean Totsch. “We threw our bodies on the line — made it difficult. Ollie made two or three big saves, and that’s what we ask of him. We knew no matter what’s happening, we were going to advance. That’s the belief we had the whole night.” The stats don’t love Tyler Gibson, but intelligent fans do. The quietly excellent midfielder helped create opportunities for the attack, all while also putting in a shift as a CB. With Gibson on the pitch, Carlos Moguel was allowed to be a bit more of an offensive presence and lean into his strengths. Keep an eye out as this pairing could play an important role in helping the team in continuing to extend their postseason.
With Memphis defeated, it is time to look ahead. Regular season champions, Pittsburgh Riverhounds, did LouCity fans a solid and made a shocking first-round exit. Detroit City is moving on and as they are below Louisville in the standings, it’s an unexpected return to Lynn Family Stadium! It was a favorable outcome when these two squared off in the bluegrass, but the most recent meeting saw the Motor City men take advantage of a LOU team in the midst of a slump. That last match was back in July. A lot has changed since then. Both teams overcame the odds on the road in round one. Louisville may have been the better performing team in the regular season, but they will need to be dialed in so they do follow in PIT’s footsteps. See you all at LFS as we cheer on the boys in purple to yet another playoff win!
The 4th Annual VamosMorados.com Player Of The Year poll is live until until the end of the day on the Tuesday following the team’s last match. Get your votes in on who you think has earned POTY honors.
And while you are at it, why don't you contribute to Coach Cruz's Leukemia & Lymphoma Society fundraising or the LouCity & Racing Foundation?
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