Some quick reactions from this weekend's action.
Photo by Leah Voit (@hasekscage)
Week 1 of the BDSL season is in the books and it included several surprising results! It was good to see so many games go off despite the porr wheather leading up to Sunday. All that said here are 7 thoughts from Week 1:
1) Premier Party Crashers
Sure lets over react some. Several clubs that were maybe after thoughts in one nameless persons predictions, showed that they are coming to play in 2019. Lackawanna FCY gave Pendleton United FC a rude introduction to life in the top flight. Williamsville Willies, boosted by their Mercyhurst pipeline, put a damper Queenston FC's early season reviews. And even Clarence Yotes dispatched Wolves FC to show they are still a force in Premier. These three teams provided a warning shot to others in the division to not take them lightly.
2) Shock and Awe
A pair of of the most surpising results from this weekend. First was BSC International's draw vs highly touted Buffalo United SS. Backed by a stellar defensive effort Inter rode an early goal from Jenero Akeh to grab a big result from one of the top teams in Premier. Similar to point 1 here Premier might be more of a battle then expected.
The second result that should turn heads the most was in D2 where WNY United Reds downed Medina 2-0. Medina might have been without a few players according to reports but the Reds seized the oppurtunity. They underwent quiet the roster overall this coming season acquiering several players from the folded Clarence Rebels. The move has paid early dividends with Chris Ellis scoring in his Red's debut. We'll be watching to see if this is a sign of things to come.
3) Pepper Conference Arms Race
The two preseason favorites from D1 Pepper Conference, Cavalucci Marini and Olean 1854 FC flexed their muscles with each team earning a 6-0 win in their openers. Starting with Marini, a hat trick from Matt Barth and a brace from Travis Hicks led the way for the Seahorses past a hapless Honey Badger side. For Olean Cory Winchell and rookie Sklar Spencer each bagged a brace as they coasted past West Seneca Panthers. And sure Panthers played this game short for a good spell but I've seen that team win a championship game with just 10 for a full 90 so its still impressive to me. These two teams have a rematch this Thursday in Cup play so I'm sure Panthers are eager to even the score.
4) Clean Sheet City
Out of the 31 games from this past weekend 18 involved shutouts. Week 1 is often a team where lots of guys are really playing with each other for the first time in a while or even ever. There is plenty of winter rust to kick off as well so it's not completely surprising to see this many clean sheets from the weekend. We'll be following certain teams though here to see if thats a worrying trend going forward. As a bonus stat here there were just 3 ties across all the games which was odd as as well.
5) Good Behavior
Honestly this might be the best first weekend I've ever had in terms of card counts. Just wanted to say thanks for that! Hopefully this trend continues.