Sacramento Republic FC faced off against OKC Energy FC Sunday afternoon in what was an important match for both sides. With a win, the Republic would move into third place in the Western Conference table, which would also eliminate OKC from the playoffs. A win or draw for the home side Energy FC would continue to keep their playoff hopes alive.
Republic FC Manager fielded the following starting XI in search of the club’s fourth-consecutive win:
Republic was the better side for the first 20 minutes or so. Unfortunately, they couldn’t string anything together in the final third to mount any real threat, which became the theme for the Quails in the first half and game. The same could be said for OKC Energy.
The match finally came alive in the 67th minute when Josh Cohen (who else right), prevented OKC from going up a goal on another quality save on a shot from Marco Bustos in what will surely be in consideration for USL Fans’ Choice Save of the Week.
The Republic would get their best chance in stoppage time. After another Cohen save, the ball was quickly played forward to Cameron Iwasa who found space and hit a left-footed shot that hit the near post.
The whistle would blow shortly thereafter and the match would end in a 0-0 draw. With the draw, Republic FC move to 15-7-8 (53 points) and clinched their fifth-consecutive playoff birth in five seasons, while Energy FC move to 11-14-6 (39 points) and are still clinging to the playoffs. The Quails also moved into fourth place in the table — just a point ahead of the Portland Timbers 2.
Republic return home to Papa Murphy's Park this Saturday, September 29 when they host the Timbers 2 in a matchup that will have huge playoff implications for both sides. That match is scheduled to kick off at 7:30pm.
Final Stats and Lineup
Sacramento Republic FC: 0 goals, 11 shots, 1 shots on target, 42.0 possession, 2 corners, 2 offsides, 0 yellow cards.
OKC Energy FC: 0 goals, 12 shots, 2 shots on target, 58.0 possession, 5 corners, 1 offsides, 2 yellow cards.
Republic FC lineup: Josh Cohen; Shannon Gomez, Josh Turnley, Mitchell Taintor, Hayden Partain; Wilson Kneeshaw (OUT, 68’), Christian Eissele (OUT, 85’), Keven Aleman (OUT, 76’), Emrah Klimenta; Jeremy Hall, Cameron Iwasa.
Republic FC bench: Rafael Diaz, Cole Seiler (IN, 85’), Justin Schmidt, Luis Espino (IN, 76’), Carlos Rodriguez, Mario Penagos, Jure Matjasic (IN, 68’).