The task was clear: Defeat second-place AFC Ann Arbor and take their place in the Great Lakes Division table — worth a coveted USL League Two postseason spot.
And the Flint City Bucks delivered Friday night in convincing fashion. Still, the critical result wasn’t without drama at Kettering University's historic Atwood Stadium.
It took nine shots and more than 80 minutes of thrilling scoreless action before Jelldrik Dallmann tallied his ninth goal of the season to give the Bucks the lead.
The German’s strike concluded a frenetic 90-second onslaught after the referee awarded a free kick outside the penalty area — despite Dallmann being clipped well inside.
Dallmann’s goal provided relief, but the job was not done: After all, Ann Arbor had come from behind to claw out 1-1 draws in both of the teams’ previous meetings in Ann Arbor.
With the raucous Atwood crowd at their backs, the Bucks turned their fortunes and not only clung to their hard-fought lead but doubled it courtesy of Derick Broche.
Now tied on points, Flint owns the first tiebreaker: head-to-head record.
The Bucks will visit Lansing City Football on Wednesday, followed by their final home match of the USL2 regular season Saturday against Midwest United FC.
Stay tuned for fan bus information for the Lansing match on Wednesday evening.
Tickets for all home matches are available at ticketmaster.com, or at the stadium gates beginning at 6 p.m.