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Ukies held to 1-1 draw in season opener at home against First State FC



Photo by Matthew Ralph

Christian Vorchheimer put the Ukies in front with a well-hit curler in the first half but the Philadelphia Ukrainian Nationals had to settle for a 1-1 draw after conceding a second half equalizer and missing a would-be winner right on the doorstep late in their season opener at home on Saturday night.

After missing out on the Keystone West Conference playoffs by two points last season, the Ukies were looking to start season three in the NPSL off on a high note and at times it looked like they might just do that battling a First State team looking to bounce back from a 1-win season playing in the Keystone East Conference in 2023.

The hosts were able to control the tempo first half and capitalized on one of those waves of positive play with the finish from Vorchheimer but as the night wore on the Delaware side found themselves more and more the team on the front foot, shifting the momentum in their favor to grab the equalizing goal through Jhamaleek Porter.

Each team traded chances to find a winner but it was a chance created off a great delivery into the box on a deadball by Braden Alicea that was headed down to an open man on the back post whose attempt flew wide of the target. It was a moment that could come back to haunt the team as they chase postseason but for now both teams will accept the draw and look ahead to games at Hershey FC. The Ukies are at Middletown Area High School on Wednesday while First State visits Hershey High School on Saturday.

Matthew Ralph is the managing editor of Philadelphia Soccer Now / Brotherly Game. He's covered soccer at all levels for many years in the Philadelphia region and has also written for, NPSL, PrepSoccer and other publications. He lives with his wife and two young children in Broomall, Pa., but grew up in South Jersey and is originally from Kansas.

Copyright © 2024 Philadelphia Soccer Now and Brotherly Game

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