CHESTER, Penn. – After what seemed like the longest four minutes of stoppage time, it all dawned on Memphis 901 FC head coach Tim Mulqueen as the final whistle blew.
“Tonight’s pretty special,” Mulqueen said after his club defeated Bethlehem Steel FC 1-0, cementing the first win 901 FC history. “Having been here from the beginning, I realize how important tonight is for our fans, our ownership group of Peter Freund, Craig Unger and Tim Howard and for the City of Memphis.
“I think the guys were heroic in how they played, and they delivered.”
Mulqueen hugged his players one by one as they walked off the pitch, congratulating them on reaching yet another milestone in the club’s infancy.
One of those players was forward Rashawn Dally, who scored his first goal as a professional soccer player and helped write another chapter in 901 FC history.
“I thanked him,” Mulqueen said with a laugh. “He hit home his first goal like a pro and I’m just delighted for him.”
Dally’s goal in the 58th minute coupled with the outstanding play from goalkeeper Jeff Caldwell, who recorded his first clean sheet as a pro, were just a few of the highlights from an overall defensive match.
Memphis’ defense held strong as Bethlehem took 11 total shots (two on target) including a pair that ricocheted off the post.
Bethlehem ended the night owning several statistical categories.
But the one that mattered when it was all said and done belonged to the club from the 901 area code.
And three points along with a Top 10 position in the USL Championship’s Eastern Conference are headed back to Memphis.
Memphis 901 FC is back in action Friday for its second match of the club’s three-match road trip. Memphis will face New York Red Bulls II at 6:00 p.m. CT at MSU Soccer Park.
The club will return home Wednesday, April 10 to face Atlanta United 2 at 7:00 p.m.