The final Division 2 playoff spot was decided this week in rematch of last year's Week 18 decision day as Stal Mielec completed the comeback and now advance to its first ever D2 playoff. The tables for both north and south were finally set and the playoff seedings now give us a chance to see who will be facing who in the playoffs.
(N1) KidSuper Samba v. (S1) Polonia Gwardia NY - Winner earns promotion to Division 1
(S2) Stal Mielec NY v. (N2) Sporting SC - Winner faces loser of previous match for promotion to Division 1
Lets see how everything finished out in Week 18:
Note: NYPD FC and Sporting SC were schedualed to face one-another this week but had to cancel due to Sporting having a state cup match. The two sides were unable to comeup with a make-up date and due to the outcome having no real impact on the standings the game will not be played.
Sunday, May 19
Brishna v. FC Spring Valley (0-3 FT)
FC Spring Valley earned its’ second win of the season as Brishna forfeit the regular season final between the two teams. The result drops Brishna into the eighth place spot of D2 North while Spring Valley stays at the bottom with three points.
Polonia Gwardia NY v. Williamsburg International FC (3-3)
No goal scorer information given by Polonia Gwardia NY
The D2 South leaders Polonia Gwardia NY are heading into the playoffs off a draw, 3-3, against Williamsburg International FC following a high offense performance by both teams.
Williamsburg’s Mark Gallagher scored three goals during the game to bring his spring season total to eight, while being assisted by Oliver Harrison, John Kaddo, and Bob Milenovici. The team, which looked to be a playoff contender at the start of March, closes out the regular season by breaking a two-game losing skid and finishing 5th in D2 South. Polonia Gwardia remains at the top of the region and will be taking on D2 North leader KidSuper Samba in the promotion playoffs.
Stal Mielec NY v. FC Japan (3-2)
In their biggest game of the season, the players of Stal Mielec NY pushed through multiple hurdles and beat FC Japan, 3-2, to secure the final Division 2 playoff spot. This was actually a rematch of last year’s regular season final between the two teams that SMNY also won 4-2.
Many members of the Stal squad were unavailable for the decision day game due to religious events meaning a few members of the reserve team had to pull double duty. This in part lead to FC Japan taking the early advantage during the first half hour. Issei Mitsui and Naoki Sekikawa both scored to give their team a two goal lead thanks to sloppy defensive errors on Stal’s part and aggressive pushes from the visiting side.
With the temperature reaching 80 degrees for the first time in 2019, Stal took its time and began to play better in the latter stages of the first. In the last twenty minutes Grzegorz Kruk and Pawel Marczenia both scored to even the game up with Jacek Lawniczak assisting on the first one.
In the second half both teams played back and forth soccer but in the end Stal’s Ismael Coulibaly found the back of the net in the 60th minute and saw the game out for the win.
“Considering so many absences it was a valuable win,” Stal Mielec NY team manager Artur Kurasiewicz said in a postgame email. “Congratulations to FC Japan, they are the most improved team this season.”
Beyond FC v. NY Ukrainians (4-0)
Could not confirm goal scorers with Beyond FC
Beyond FC finished the 2018-19 season with a big win, 4-0, over legacy club NY Ukrainians on Sunday afternoon in Secaucus, NJ. The win is Beyond’s second biggest of the season while NYU earned its third worst loss of 2018-19.
FC Ulqini v. Panatha USA (3-0 FT)
Panatha USA forfeited its’ third game of the spring to FC Ulqini as the two teams were set to battle on Sunday night. The points earned have allowed Ulqini to move into the top four of D2 South to end the season while Panatha finishes with zero points and 0-0-16 record.
KidSuper Samba AC v. Manhattan Celtic (2-1)
No goal scorer information given by Manhattan Celtic
KidSuper Samba AC is heading into the D2 playoffs on a four game winning streak following its regular season final win over Manhattan Celtic, 2-1. In terms of points (38) and a record of 12-2-2 the team is the top seed in the promotion playoff and one of the favorites heading into its rematch with Polonia Gwardia NY. Last season the two teams met as two seeds and Polonia advanced, 4-3.
All the recent usual suspects performed when it mattered most for KidSuper as a quiet first half lead into a two goal surge and late game comeback squash. Alhoussain Bah and Ebrima Jallow both scored for the team, assisted by Yankuba Janneh and Abdoulaye Diallo respectively, while Manhattan scored a goal not long after to cut the lead down to one.
KS Samaba leads not only the second division but nearly the entire league with 72 goals through 16 games, only falling short of Metro Division 2’s Missile FC who has scored 85 goals as a team. They will be going up against the Divisions top defense in Polonia which has only allowed 19 goals this year.