Sacramento Republic FC returned home Saturday night following a 1-2 loss Monday at Tacoma to face United Soccer League Championship newcomers Austin Bold FC in the first ever match between the two sides.
Republic were clearly looking to bounce back, while Austin was looking to make it two straight wins following their 1-0 win at home last week against San Antonio FC.
Republic FC Manager Simon Elliott fielded the following starting XI (4-3-3 formation), which was different than what we have seen over the last several weeks:
While there was no scoring in the first half, it was a good 45 minutes for the Quails with Cameron Iwasa, Villyan Bijev and Tyler Blackwood all with decent chances.
It wasn’t until the waning minutes of the match (85th minute) that the Republic finally broke through.
Second half substitute Sam Werner sent in a beautiful, sweeping corner kick that midfielder Jaime Villarreal was able to gather and put past the keeper to give the Republic a 1-0 advantage.
In the end, Jermaine Taylor from Austin was credited with an own-goal instead of Villarreal getting credit. Not all were happy about the call — including Republic FC forward Cameron Iwasa:
Regardless of how late they scored or who was credited for the goal, the Republic secured an important three points late at home and definitely deserved the result.
With the win, Republic FC move into a tie for first place in the Western Conference table with a record of 3-1-1 (10 points). Meanwhile, Austin falls to 1-2-1 on the season (4 points).
Next up for the Republic is Saturday, April 13 on the road against Portland Timbers 2 where they will look to build on Saturday’s result.
Sacramento Republic FC: 1 goal, 5 shots, 3 shots on target, 64.0 possession, 9 corners, 1 offsides, 1 yellow card.
Austin Bold FC: 0 goals, 10 shots, 2 shots on target, 36.0 possession, 4 corners, 1 offsides, 1 yellow card.
Republic FC Lineup: Josh Cohen, Shannon Gomez, Mitchell Taintor, Drew Skundrich (OUT, 68’), Tyler Blackwood, Viyllan Bijev (OFF, 70’), Dekel Keinan, Jaime Villarreal, Ray Saari, Jordan McCrary (OFF, 89’) and Cameron Iwasa.
Republic FC Bench: Rafael Diaz, Haris Chantzopoulos (IN, 89’), Hayden Partain, Keven Alemen, Sam Werner (IN, 70’), Elliott Hord, Stefano Bonomo (IN, 68’).