North Carolina FC fell 2-1 to FC Tucson after a lengthy weather delay halted the momentum it had built in a dominant first half.
NCFC got off to the perfect start, taking the lead inside of 10 minutes. Jay Tee Kamara found Selmir Miscic at the top of the box and Miscic beat one defender before going around the keeper and slotting it into the empty net. Miscic’s goal was just NCFC’s second of the season, with the other coming in the season opener, which Miscic also scored.
North Carolina’s perfect start did not last long, however. Just minutes after Miscic put them in front, Peter Pearson had a cross fly off his leg and into the back of NCFC’s net, bringing the game level.
With just two minutes left in a first half dominated by NCFC, Mother Nature decided the hosts were looking a little too good as lightning in the area forced a weather delay. After nearly an hour, the two teams played out an uneventful final few minutes of the half but NCFC’s momentum was well and truly killed.
A few minutes into the second half, Manu Ferriol got the ball at the top of the box and curved it in for the winning goal.
In the 78th minute, a deflected ball in the box led to some very adamant protests from the NCFC players, who were calling for a penalty, believing that the ball struck an FC Tucson defender’s arm.
The possible handball wasn’t the only call NCFC’s players objected to late in the game, with players complaining to the ref about the speed at which Tucson was putting the ball back in play.
Late in the game, after more than a few incidents, Tucson’s Franco Pérez, who had only been brought on in the 82nd minute, picked up his second yellow, ending his night early. By the end of the game, the ref had lost control of the game with frustration clearly building on both sides.
NCFC will look to bounce back and pick up its first win of the season on Saturday, June 5 when it hosts Fort Lauderdale CF.