Orlando City closed out its tenure at Camping World Stadium with a victory. It's been a rocky season but the Lions were able to finish the 2016 campaign with a fairly convincing win that could give fans hope for 2017.
Despite the gaffe from Seb Hines, it was a well-rounded effort from the boys, which sent the fans home happy. So, without further ado, let's get into the final takeaways of the 2016 season.
Molino Mania is Back
After a poor run of form and a bit of trouble with the Trinidad and Tobago national team, Kevin Molino had a fantastic game to close out the season. Notching a goal and an assist in the final game at Camping World Stadium, Molino was able to create the most chances on the team, with five, while also being dangerous in front of goal. The winger finished the year with 11 goals, eight assists, and a huge comeback year for him individually, after tearing his ACL last season. After the game, Molino said that he wanted to "make a mark" on the last game he played in the former Citrus Bowl and it's safe to say he did just that.
Chances Created Aplenty
Orlando's offense looked to be in peak form yesterday. Matias Perez Garcia, Kaká and Kevin Molino seemed to be firing on all cylinders. Combined, the trio created nine chances on goal and both Kaká and Molino had a part in three of the four goals.
Offensive Firepower Cristian Higuita
In his post-game press conference, Jason Kreis said that he told Cristian Higuita to try to push up more into the attack and get more involved. The defensive midfielder took it to heart in yesterday's match and notched his first goal and assist of the season. Not only was he helpful with the attack, but his managing of the midfield with Antonio Nocerino was superb and really shut down most of D.C.'s chances going forward. This was a good glimpse of what's to come for the young midfielder in Kreis' vision for Orlando City and fans should be excited for the 21-year-old's 2017 season.
Manager Records: Jason Kreis vs. Adrian Heath
As much of a fan I was of Adrian Heath (and still am), Kreis did improve the Orlando City team in his time with the Lions. From his first game on July 31 to yesterday's game, Kreis amassed a 5-6-3 record, while Adrian Heath was 4-4-8. The Lions earned 18 points under Kreis in 14 games (1.29 points per game), while the team earned 20 points for Heath in 16 games (1.25 ppg). That's not bad considering Kreis took over the team mid-season and had to make changes on the fly. Time will tell what happens next year in the new building and a full camp under Kreis' belt.
"We're Goin' Home"
The Ruckus and Iron Lion Firm put it best. The Lions are headed to their new home next year and close out a five-year tenure in the Citrus Bowl/Camping World Stadium. Lots of great memories took place in the stadium, but I for one can't wait for the brand new stadium.
That's it. Season's over. Everybody go home. See ya in five months at the new stadium.