It was a performance to forget as South Bend Lions dominated Toledo Villa FC 5-0 Wednesday evening. The loss was Toledo's first on the season, and the win sends South Bend to the top of the division.
The onslaught began early, with Goalkeeper Brendan Graves continuing his fine form to start the season. In the 11th minute, South Bend had a corner. The ball was flicked towards goal and Connor Duggan was on the goal line, but Graves stretched to pull the ball off the line.
The South Bend attack would continue in the 17th minute. The ball got played the wing to Fumiya Shiraishi. He cut inside, but his shot was blocked by Joey Akpunonu. It went to the top of the box to Duvan Angarita, whose shot took a deflection. The deflection brought out a fantastic save as Graves threw a arm up to push the ball wide.
South Bend eventually broke the Toledo defense in the 27th minute. A flick at midfield found Landon Fischer. He played the ball wide to Shiraishi, who cut inside again. His shot was dribbling out wide of goal, but a touch from Connor Duggan kept it in play. Brennan Creek rushed to save the ball from going out, leaving Connor Duggan to tap home the opening goal.
South Bend doubled the lead in the 33rd minute. Midfielder Tim Noeding carried the ball forward and played an inch perfect pass into Connor Duggan's path. He turned and fired past Graves.
Just before half Toledo showed a spark of an attack. Eli Shope intercepted a pass at midfield. He played it forward for Caleb Gibbons. He picked out Mike Moser at the top of the box. He found a shot, but goalkeeper Jacob Madden read the bounce well.
In the second half, South Bend continued attacking at will. In the 47th minute, South Bend played Connor Duggan over the top. His shot on target was parried away by Brendan Graves.
South Bend were awarded an indirect free kick in the box in the 50th minute. Brendan Graves elected to stand in the wall, and charged out on the first touch. He made himself big and made a double save on the play, earning big cheers from the crowd.
South Bend however would make it 3-0 in the 54th minute. South Bend were awarded a free kick just outside the penalty area. Tim Noeding stepped forward to take it and his shot deflected off the wall and into the top corner.
Things got worse in the 66th minute. Toledo were struggling to clear their defensive lines, when South Bend made them pay. A neat interchange of passes found George Herbert, who neatly turned. He had space to curl the ball past Graves to make it 4-0.
Former Toledo Villa FC player Kainan dos Santos entered the match for South Bend and rounded off the victory. A loose pass from Toledo was picked off by Duvan Angarita. He layed it wide for Kainan dos Santos, who hit a hard shot at the near post.
Toledo will look to bounce back this weekend as they host Fort Wayne FC on Saturday May 28th at Paul Hotmer Field.