Dom Dwyer lifts Orlando City to second championship in three years


Photo Credit: Ty Wright

Orlando City SC heads in to the off season awaiting a stadium vote which could land them in the MLS in 2015

ORLANDO —  This year’s 2013 USL Pro championship was one for the books, as Dom Dwyer scored four goals leading Orlando City SC to their second USL Pro title in three years defeating the Charlotte Eagles 7-4.

“I’m very appreciated they welcomed me back with open arms,” stated Dwyer, who played 13 games with Lions, on loan from MLS club Kansas City, before being recalled to go back up. “Sometimes it’s difficult just bringing a guy back for one game because someone is going to lose their space. But I’m very appreciative and the guys were supportive. They were happy about it and we got the job done.”

Dwyer became the poster child for the USL Pro, scoring 15 goals in just 13 games during the regular season – before being called back up to play in the Major Soccer League (MLS) with Sporting Kansas City – helping him receive all-league honors, as well as the co-recipient for the 2013 Golden Boot award.

A record high 20,866 fans filled in the Citrus Bowl Saturday night to watch Dwyer pick up right where he left off — Dwyer netted four-goals and one-assist – scoring the first hat-trick in USL Pro championship history – second in his professional career – leaving the game with MVP honors.

“I was so hungry, and I wanted to win so bad,” said Dwyer, who admitted he had mixed feeling when he first found out he was going down on loan to Orlando last year. “Not just for myself; but for all the guys, all the fans, and just everyone here. I wanted to give it my all and help as much as I can.

I knew it was the end if their season, so they were going to give it all, and I wanted to do the same so I had to treat it like the end of my season.”

Despite what Dwyer called ‘rusty’ play – finding the post in the 38th minute — heading the ball in backwards just four-minutes later — scoring of a Adama Mbengu penalty kick in the 61st minute of play and then capitalizing on a corner kick from Anthony Pullis – it was local native Dennis Chin goal in the 70th minute of play, which sealed the deal.

“If you were to said to me we were going to concede four, I wouldn’t of thought we were going to win the game,” stated Lions head coach Adrian Heath. “We scored at the right time.

“I say it all the time, goals change games, and every time we needed one we got one… We managed to keep the momentum and the crowd in the game.”