By Mike Pilosof
Photo by Adam Shrimplin
Garden City, KS-On any other night, during any other year, a Garden City-Dodge City match in late September, wouldn't make the headlines. But this rivalry has a funny way of keeping people interested.
In one of the most physical matches of the year, the Broncbusters persevered, netting a 2-1 victory over their arch rivals from the east.
Garden City broke through in the 30th minute when Jack Matiabo drilled a line-drive shot past Dodge City keeper Rafael Callegari, giving the Broncbusters a 1-0 edge. Less than a minute later, the home team had a chance to extend the lead. But Abdoulaye Agyen's 20-yard bomb bounced off the post.
In the second half, Agyen got a chance at redemption, and this time didn't miss. He shook of two Dodge City defenders, then nailed it past Cellegari to put Garden City up 2-0.
If only it were that easy.
During Agyen's foray to the goal, one of the officials had his flag up signaling a foul. However, the other referee didn't see it, allowing Agyen to finish inside the box. But Dodge City contested the goal, and a 15-minute discussion ensued.
Eventually, the officials ruled that the goal counted. But the verbal jabs were just beginning.
With less than 20 minutes to go, Head Coach Corey Bryant was ejected. A few minutes after that, Matiabo, author of the first goal of the match, was given a red card.
Meantime Dodge City got back in the match in the 77th minute. Following a foul in the box, Hugo Torregrossa drove a penalty kick into the right corner of the net as keeper Gabriel Melo dove the other way. It sliced the Broncbuster lead in half.
The Conquistadors were afforded a couple of more chances to even the score, including Igor Luis Maciel's point-blank miss from eight yards out.
The win moved the Broncbusters over .500 in conference play at 3-2, and it was the first time this season that they won back-to-back matches.
Next up: a trip to Great Bend to face Barton on Saturday. Match time set for 4:30 p.m.