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07 / 15

Lansing United Secures Playoff Spot With 3 – 0 Win

WRITTEN BY: Tori Twining
PUBLISHED ON: July 15, 2018

DAYTON, Ohio – Lansing United needed six points on the weekend to guarantee a place in the PDL Playoffs. A 6 – 1 win over Derby City Friday night and a 3 – 0 victory Sunday afternoon over the Dayton Dutch Lions secured their spot in Des Moines, Iowa.

“We had a big weekend on our hands,” head coach Nate Miller said. “The guys played a great game today, they were fantastic. They did all the little things it takes to win…It’s a really tough group. They were really focused throughout the week. They struck a good balance of having fun, having a good time together, but as game time came closer they were super focused…it’s a sign of a championship type team. We’ve won one trophy and we want to keep going. We want to make some noise.”

“It’s great. You come in as strangers, not knowing each other, and now we are playing as brothers,” DeJuan Jones said. “It’s been a great journey and we are looking forward to keeping it going.”

Leroy Enzugusi opened the scoring for United in the 18th minute when he headed in a cross over the keeper sent in by Kyle Carr on a corner kick.

“I jumped as high as I could to get the ball,” Enzugusi said. “I’m just happy it went in the goal.”

Lansing went into halftime leading 1 – 0.

Within three minutes of the second half, United added two more goals to their lead. Enzugusi got his second goal in the 47th minute minute. Dribbling into the box, Enzugusi beat three defenders and the keeper for an open net goal. DeJuan Jones added to the United lead a minute later. TJ Ifaturati found a running Jones in the box and DeJuan found the back of the net.

“I just went in and told the guys ‘I love you. I want to see you play next weekend,’” Jones said. “We just brought it right out of the gate. We knew one goal wouldn’t be enough. They’re a good team so we wanted to up the goals, so we got two more goals quick.”

“We thought we had played a really good first half, we created a ton of chances,” Miller said. “It just took a mentality, a little bit of an edge…in the final third, to have the confidence to take it yourself…but we also wanted to make sure we were solid and move the ball around.”

Enzugusi, who is from Iowa and plays at Drake University in Des Moines, gets to go home.

“This is my first year in the PDL and Lansing’s first year in the PDL. It’s been a great journey and playing with some really talented guys,” Enzugusi said. “I’m excited to go back home to Des Moines and beat the Menace.”

United qualified for the playoffs in their inaugural PDL season and are scheduled to play the Des Moines Menace Friday, July 20 at 7:30 PM. The other two teams in the Central Conference Playoffs are the Dayton Dutch Lions FC and Chicago FC United.

“74 teams in the PDL and 16 get to go to this stage,” Miller said. “It’s an elite group that we have. At this stage you’re going to play an elite group, you’re going to play a great team…We’re excited for the challenge, that’s what this league is all about and that’s what our players are all about.”

“There is some elite company here,” Enzugusi said. “Seeing 16 teams left and we’re one of them, it feels nice, but it’s not stopping here. We have a lot of work left.”