MWPL Division Remains Contested After Men's First Team Ties

MWPL Division Remains Contested After Men's First Team Ties

The Men's First Team managed to tie against Chicago City FC at the Fire Pitch Saturday night after an answering goal by Roberto Cardona and superb defense by Rooks goalie Aidan Crawford led to a 1-1 outcome. 

After Chicago House beat Bavarian United earlier that day, both the Rooks and Chicago City SC had the chance to emerge as the first place team in the Midwest Premier League. With the tie result, the race to go Top of the Table heading into the Summer months becomes tight; both the Rooks and rival Steel City remain the only undefeated teams in the Heartland Conference of the MWPL.

Chicago City SC is well known for recruiting D1 players for their Men's and Women's programs, so Rooks players knew that the match was going to be tough. City is also well known for being the largest youth club in Chicago, further proving their prominence in the MWPL.


Goalie Aidan Crawford prepares to send a caught ball to his teammates. Credit: Miles Whitworth (

After a contested first half left the game scoreless thanks to great defensive play by the Rooks and City alike, both teams wanted to score heading into the second. Starting off strong, City had multiple chances within the first 10 minutes, but were denied by Aidan Crawford; at 52', Crawford made an amazing save, blocking multiple goal attempts in a row. City shot a cross, attempted a header, and tried to score after the ball was saved following the header. Crawford remained cool-headed, defusing the attempts at each try. City soon afterwards however scored at 54' as their continuous attacks eventually got the best of the Rooks' defense.

Roberto Cardano (center right) and his teammates celebrate his goal. Credit: Miles Whitworth (

Edgewater Castle soon rallied however, taking the score personally as they bounded up the field at 56'. After Roberto Cardano regained possession from City, Bardia Kimiavi landed an accurate cross to Alberto Rodriguez in the center of the box, who then passed to Cardano again who scored a header. This sequence by the Rooks slipped past City's formidable defense, handing them the goal they were looking for.

Rooks player Bardia Kimiavi moves the ball forwards into City territory. Credit: Miles Whitworth (

The rest of the game relied on the Rooks' offense being their best defense. Possession remained with the Rooks for the most part, and multiple goal attempts were made, especially by Kimiavi. However, City's defense was too strong for the Rooks to score, denying them a winning goal.


Crawford looks on to the game's action after preventing a goal. Credit: Miles Whitworth (

Crawford continued to block scores as well to secure the tie. When City did manage to get the ball, Crawford put his mind and body to the test, making meaningful plays to block near scores; a near shot by City at 72' could have spelt disaster for Edgewater Castle, but Crawford dove down and blocked City's chances of winning. Crawford also blocked a flurry of goals in the final 5 minutes of the game to ensure the tie for the Rooks.

Both teams now look forwards to continuing the fight for first place in their division. The Men's First Team's next game is June 10th against Bavarian United at HVF Stadium at 7:30 pm.

To watch some Rooks action this week, be sure to catch the Women's First Team's game at the Fire Pitch against Indiana United on June 3rd at 8:30 PM. For tickets to the Women's First Team's game, click this link:

Edgewater Castle FC's NSL Team also plays against the Berber City Reserves this weekend. Be sure to catch their game on June 4th at noon at Wilson Turf Field.


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