The Michigan Bucks retained their hold on first place in the United Soccer League’s (USL) Great Lakes Division with a 2-1 win over FC London on Friday evening. The Bucks (4-1-1, 13 points) handed London their first loss of the season (3-1, 9 points) when they closed the deal with a second half Kenny Uzoigwe goal in the 56th minute.
Uzoigwe’s header from a Sebby Harris (Oxford, MI) free kick from mid field put the team on top to stay, while the defense held off a late London rally for the equalizer. Kenny’s third goal of the season, along with his three assists put him atop the Bucks scoring leaders with nine points.
Forward Luke Holmes (Oldham, England/ Akron) opened the scoring in the fourth minute when he smacked home a left footed shot from close range to give the Bucks a very early 1-0 lead. Holmes has three goals and two assists on the season for the Bucks (8 points).
As usually is the case, both teams battled the entire match and defended tightly to keep the game to a low scoring affair. PDL Honorable Mention player this week, goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt (Livonia, MI/ Oakland) came up big on several occasions in registering his fourth win of the season in the Michigan goal. Hildebrandt was denied his fifth shutout of the season when striker Harris Cekic scored on a FC London penalty kick to tie the game at one in the 18th minute.
Bucks coach Gary Parsons was happy to get his first road win of the season, especially in a hostile environment. ”London had a nice crowd tonight (over 950 people) in a great soccer park. They have done a nice job here with this club and always put one of the hardest working teams in the PDL on the field each year. As hard as it is to play against them, we always have competitive matches that are entertaining for the fans. I am happy with the progress we are making as a team and need to continue to build on our winning streak Sunday in Toronto,” said Parsons.
Michigan continues their Canadian tour this weekend by taking the short drive to Toronto to take on the Lynx on Sunday (6:00 PM kick off). The Bucks will look to make it five wins in a row after stumbling out of the gate with an opening season road trip that produced only a tie and a loss. Following Sunday’s match, the Bucks return home to take on the Hamilton FC Rage on Saturday, June 18 at Borden Park as part of the Rochester Soccer Club youth tryouts.