2024 Match Reports

Inter Miami II strikes late, ends FCC 2’s unbeaten streak

A photo taken by Anders Saling at a match between FC Cincinnati 2 and Philadelphia Union II.

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, KENTUCKY – On an overcast day at Scuadmore Stadium, a goal in stoppage time by Inter Miami CF II’s (4-2-4) Nykolas Sessock ended FC Cincinnati 2’s (6-4-1) five-game winning streak.


After a mishit back-pass by Stiven Jimenez, goalkeeper Paul Walters came up huge in the 14th minute to stop Inter Miami II’s Idoh Zeltzer-Zubida from finding the game’s opening goal.

Walters came up huge again just one minute later, denying Zeltzer-Zubida again after a long ball from midfielder Jose Casas de Abadal.

The Orange and Blue got their best opportunity in the first half in the 44th minute when Nico Benalcazar got on the end of an FCC 2 corner kick and struck the ball in a crowd of Miami defenders that troubled Inter Miami II’s goalkeeper Owen Finnerty.

FCC2 outshot Inter Miami II 6-3, but Miami had one more shot on goal than Cincinnati.

Possession favored the home side, with the Orange and Blue having 52 percent of the ball to The Herons’ 48 percent.

After the first 45 minutes, the scoreline remained 0-0 as both sides went into the dressing room.


After a foul in the box from a corner kick, FCC 2 was awarded a penalty kick in the 64th minute. In his first start for FCC2, Guilherme Santos stepped up to the spot. However, his attempt was saved by Finnerty and the rebound was headed over the bar by Santos as well. The scoreline remained 0-0.

In the 77th minute, second half substitute Bryan Destin struck a shot from distance, but Walters was able to come up with another big save.

In stoppage time, both teams threw numbers forward, trying to find the game-winning goal. In the 93rd minute, Miami launched a counterattack. Destin found Sessock, who made a late run into the box and finished with his left foot to give Inter Miami CF II a 1-0 lead in the dying moments of the game.

FCC 2 found a chance deep into stoppage time, with center back Brian Schaefer striking a shot from outside the box which was parried over the bar by Finnerty in the 95th minute.

In the final moments of the match, FCC 2 almost found the equalizer from a header by Amir Daley, but it was cleared off the line by Miami center back Tye Barton.

After an action-packed ending to the match, Cincinnati couldn’t find their goal, as Miami held on to the 1-0 lead and secured all three points.


Well, FCC 2’s historic unbeaten streak comes to an end. The team was missing a few starters, most notably Stefan Chirila and London Aghedo. But it was clear that the performance from Cincinnati did not have the same ferocity as the past five games.

Head coach Tyrone Marshall pointed to the lack of energy from the start as a big reason for the performance in his postgame conference.

“You could see it from the start, you could tell that intensity wasn’t there, the quality wasn’t there like normal,” he said. “Sometimes you’re going to get complacent, right? And I think that was evident today. You know, part of the message that we spoke about, ‘Hey, you know, everyone in this league on any given day, they can get beat.’ But we have to make sure the standards that we need are at the same or even higher, and the standard wasn’t the same as we normally have, so for us now to get back into a good rhythm.”

The Orange and Blue outshot the Herons 13-9 and had six shots on target to Miami’s four. FCC 2 had 54 percent of possession to Inter Miami II’s 46 percent, and Cincinnati also had a better passing accuracy throughout the match with 76 percent to Miami’s 69 percent. There were a combined 25 fouls between the two teams, including four yellow cards, two for each side.

Despite the loss, FC Cincinnati 2 remains in third place in the Eastern Conference with 19 points, just four behind first-place Philadelphia Union II, who is the team’s next opponent, on Thursday, June 6th. Cincinnati beat Phildelphiea 3-1 earlier in the year at home and will look to do the same on the road.

FC Cincinnati 2 Lineup:


GK: Paul Walters

D: Isaiah Foster, Brian Schaefer, Gaël Gilbert

M: Amir Daley, Stiven Jimenez, Peter Mangione, Nico Benalcazar, Moises Tablante

F: Guilherme Santos (Jesus Castellano 64′), Ben Stitz (Ryan Belal 83′)

Inter Miami II Lineup:


GK: Owen Finnerty

D: Nykolas Sessock, Santiago Garcia, Tyler Hall, Israel Boatwright (Samuel Basabe 90+2′)

M: Ricardo Montenegro, Tye Barton, Derrek Martinez, Jose Casas de Abadal (Jospeh Convers 83′)

F: Idoh Zeltzer-Zubida (Bryan Destin 75′), Yuval Cohen (Darion Reyes 90+2)

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