Photo courtesy Isaiah J. Downing / Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The Bundesliga’s Mainz 05 took a 6-0 victory against Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC on Tuesday night to take the inaugural Freedom Cup at Switchbacks Stadium. The international exhibition was the first of its kind for the Switchbacks, as Mainz put on a strong display in front of their travelling support.
Mainz took the lead in the sixth minute as the visitors worked the ball into the left side of the penalty area for Gerrit Holtmann, and his low cross through the six-yard area the back post found Pablo De Blasis for a sliding finish at the back post.
The Bundesliga side continued to have the better of the game early, but the Switchbacks had a chance to level when they were awarded a foul 23 yards from goal in the 20th minute. Shintaro Harada tried to curl a shot toward the top-right corner of the net, but the shot flew high.
Mainz threatened again on the half-hour mark as Jose Rodriguez tried to curl a shot from the top of the penalty area into the top-left corner, but Switchbacks goalkeeper Devala Gorrick made a good save to turn it aside for a corner.
The visitors doubled their lead five minutes before the halftime break, though, as Holtmann made a powerful run into the left side of the penalty area and drove home a finish from 15 yards. Then in first-half stoppage time, Christian Clemens made it three as he finished from close range.
Mainz added to its lead six minutes into the second half when Jairo Samperio lifted a finish past Gorrick after a pass split the Switchbacks defense. Samperio then set up Besar Halimi for a fifth a few minutes later as the visitors took complete control.
The Switchbacks got more of a foothold in the game just past the hour-mark as midfielders Luke Vercollone and Rony Argueta were introduced into the game, but Mainz added a sixth goal late on to wrap up the game in style as Jhon Cordoba found the back of the net.