It was 119 degrees on the field but that didn’t slow down Minneapolis City, who defeated Sioux Falls Thunder 2-0 behind two first half goals from Will Kidd to stay top of the North Conference table.
Given the intense heat, it was always going to be about scoring that first goal and then managing energy levels. City executed that strategy to perfect. In the fourth minute, winger Kevin Andrews went on a mazy run wide and fed Will Kidd, who had made a diagonal run in behind the defenders. Though running away from goal, Kidd finished with ease, twisting to shoot past the Sioux Falls goalkeeper.
Possession was all in City’s favor, the Thunder playing like an away team, trying to stay compact and hit the Crows on the counter. Yet, they were breached again in the 20th minute. Midfielder Max Stiegwardt quickly switched play to fullback Aaron Olson, who had overlapped, and Olson played in a wonderful cross to Kidd who made no mistake for his second of the day.
Chances continued to fall, in the remainder of the first half and the second, to Kidd, Andrews, and forward Whitney Browne, but they weren’t able to convert.
With the molasses-like heat bearing down on both teams, the tempo subsided in the second half. Still, Andrews and fullback Zuheer Al Abase were creating dangerous chances.
At the other end, goalkeeper Jeremy Clark, making his City debut, made his first save in the 55th minute. He had little to do after as the action was all the other way.
Though there were no more goals in the game, both Andrews and Al Abase will wish they had their chances back late in the second half. However, with a 2-0 lead, intense heat, and time ticking down, City were content to keep the ball and attack sporadically. And so the game ended, a professional performance bringing home another three points for the Crows.