5/21/2010: Dutch Lions vs. Michigan Bucks Preview

6:23 AM Posted by Ryan Kozlowski

Saturday's game between the Dayton Dutch Lions and the Michigan Bucks should be a knock out, drag out battle for both clubs with the winner having one of the better chances to qualify for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup from the Great Lakes Division. The Dutch Lions have the best offensive firepower in the Great Lakes Division while the Michigan Bucks are loaded with young American talent such as Akron's Zarek Valentin, former Crew academy's Chad Barson & Ben Speas, Wake Forest's Andy Lubahn, and Akron's Kofie Sarkodie. Luckily for the Dutch Lions, the Michigan Bucks will be missing three of these young American stars in their defensive backline. The Bucks will be without Valentin, Barson, and Sarkodie as all three will be playing for the U.S. in a U-20 Tournament taking place oddly enough in Holland (The Cor Groenewegan Tournament).

Valentin, Barson, and Sarkodie all played in the Michigan Bucks backline against the Internationals and all three were pivotal in shutting out Cleveland in their away game at Cleveland Wednesday night. Michigan won their game 3-0 against the Cleveland Internationals just like the Dutch Lions won their game 3-0 against the same team the previous Saturday. However, both teams won in a different fashion against the Internationals; as the Michigan Bucks came out and got all three goals in the first half and then stepped off the pedal in the second half whereas the Dutch Lions got one goal in the first half and two goals in the second half against the Internationals.

Here is what Michigan Bucks Head Coach Gary Parsons had to say about his team's result against the Internationals on Wednesday:
“I am happy with the result, but I had hoped we would do some things better as a unit. That is hard to expect seeing that we have only been together two weeks, but we should be farther along defensively. Our plan defensively was to shut down (Cleveland) on the counter attack.”

“We did some good things in that last twenty minutes of the first half and then came out flat in the second half,” added Parsons. “This is something we need to address before Saturday. We have to maintain the intensity to keep teams from getting back in the game.”

On the Dutch Lions side of the ball, defensive midfielder Bruce Godvliet had to say the following about their game against the Internationals and what the Lions still need to do to improve:

"The previous week the organization was not that good, last week against the Internationals the defense was standing much more better. When the organization is good we will have less chances against us."

"Up front were one of the best teams in the league, so when we play with a zero in defense we'll always win the match. So we look to do that better every game and on Saturday."

The Dutch Lions will look to combine their injury free squad and opportune absences for the Bucks defense as a formula for their first away win. Nevertheless, the Bucks on the road will still be the toughest step (important absences on defense or not) towards Dutch Lion qualification for the U.S. Open Cup.

A game report will be up after the game on our website. Also their will be video highlights up sometime on Sunday.
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