Senior midfielder Jonas Fjeldberg joined junior midfielder Kingsford Adjei with a brace of goals each in Friday night’s 6-2 win. Photo courtesy of Flyer News.
In their first game at Baujan Field since Nov. 10, 2019, the Dayton Flyers routed Cedarville 6-2 in an exhibition match Friday night.
“I think that was the highlight of the night, just getting back out here,” head coach Dennis Currier said after the game. “I think the energy was great, I thought we capitalized on that energy in the first half.”
The Flyers jumped over the Yellow Jackets from kick off, scoring just two minutes into the match on a right-footed shot by senior midfielder Jonas Fjeldberg, who was assisted by sophomore midfielder Seth Antwi after a corner kick had been headed high into the air.
Currier said the team trained this week knowing the Yellow Jackets had a “low block” and a lot of players in the box, so they tried to draw the defenders to the first attacker and “sliding the ball through.”
“We did that right from the start, and got a great goal to get us started,” Currier said. “That’s when we’re really dangerous, if we can get that first goal, especially early in the game. Just capitalizing on the energy and putting the first goal in kind of got us on a really good start for the game.”
It took 15 minutes until the next goal, but the Flyers dominated possession, and that paid off when sophomore Toluwalase Oladienbo won a loose ball in the penalty area and fired a fantastic curling shot into the right side of the net to put the Flyers up 2-0.
Eight minutes later, Fjeldberg flicked a pass to junior midfielder Kingsford Adjei, who chipped a shot over the Cedarville goalkeeper to give the Flyers a 3-0 advantage. Moments after that goal, freshman goalkeeper Marc Kouadio went full stretch to push a Cedarville shot behind for a corner kick, and then went high into the air to grab the ensuing in-swinger to stop any sort of chances for the Yellow Jackets.
In the 30th minute, Adjei achieved a first-half brace with an absolute missile of a shot from just outside the box into the bottom right corner to put the Flyers up 4-0.
Although Antwi picked up a yellow card for a tough challenge a few yards outside the penalty area five minutes later, it came to nothing, and another five minutes later, a pass by junior midfielder Jake Feiner found sophomore forward Josh Darius, who passed a shot into the bottom right corner to put the Flyers up 5-0.
A moment of brilliance by Cedarville from a free kick by Victor Pomelli from just outside the penalty area brought one back for the Yellow Jackets, and the Flyers led 5-1 at halftime, holding a 13-5 shots advantage, and putting nine of those shots on goal compared to just two for the Yellow Jackets.
The Yellow Jackets were able to pull back another goal in the 71st minute on a shot by Sammy Kilimann that just passed over the goal line according to the assistant referee.
In the 84th minute, the Flyers had a goal called back for offside, but just one minute later, sophomore midfielder Tyler Swanbeck laid off a pass to Adjei, who sent in a cross that was met by Fjeldberg, who went way up for the header that floated over the goalkeeper and into the net to give the Flyers a 6-2 lead.
“They’re (Fjeldberg and Adjei) two of the most dangerous attackers in the country, really,” Currier said. “They’ve been playing well since we got back, and they can hurt you at any time. We know that we have those weapons, and they did a really good job putting the ball in the back of the net today.”
The Flyers saw out the rest of the game, holding onto a 6-2 win in their home opener exhibition match against the Yellow Jackets. The Flyers tripled the Yellow Jackets in shots (27-9) and more than tripled shots on goal (14-4).
“This early part of this journey, we’ve got to find our identity,” Currier said. “And with that being said, there’s not a whole lot of time for that. So tonight was about finding our identity, and playing the way the Flyers play, which is high-end, high-tempo attacking soccer, and we accomplished that tonight.”
Next up, the Flyers face Bellarmine on Wednesday, March 10 at Baujan Field at 7 p.m.
Currier also said the team needs to get ready “quickly” for conference play, which starts Saturday, March 13 at Saint Louis.