Sacramento Republic FC came back home to face off against Fresno FC in the Highway 99 Derby. The Republic were looking to recover from a 2-0 loss at Reno last time out. On the other hand, Fresno was coming in riding a four game unbeaten streak, including wins against San Antonio and El Paso. Sacramento have won the previous two times these teams have met this season, both being 1-0 wins.
Coach Simon Elliott fielded this 11 to start the match:
Sacramento looked to strike from the get go. A cross from Shannon Gomez got to the head of Stefano Bonomo. His header nearly led to a goal within the first minute, but it was put wide of post.
Fresno had a decent chance of their own in the 13th minute, as an indirect free kick bounced around in the box. One of their players got a scissor kick on it, but it hit the post and was cleared by the Republic defense.
Another great chance presented itself in the 17th minute for the Republic. A cross from Cameron Iwasa tried to get to an outstretched Bonomo, but he couldn’t reach it.
Sacramento continued to pelt the box with crosses in the 22nd minute. Ray Saari put in a ball from the center of the park. Elliott Hord was able to nod it on. The resulting header ended up getting caught by the Fresno keeper.
One of the better chances for the Republic came as Hayden Partain shot an absolute screamer at the Fresno goal. The keeper couldn’t catch it first try, but eventually recovered the ball before it can cross the line.
The teams went in to halftime scoreless. Both teams had decent chances throughout the first half — the best of which was Partain’s shot that nearly dribbled into goal.
Beautiful buildup led to a decent chance for the Republic in the 58th minute. Partain left the ball off for Sam Werner inside the Fresno box. Werner’s shot was blocked by a Fresno defender and went out for a corner.
Two red cards were issued in the 72nd minute to Republic’s Dekel Keinan and Fresno’s Jaime Chavez, for a scuffle outside the Republic box. Both teams played with 10 men from this point on.
Fresno opened the scoring in the 76th minute as a cross from Elijah Martin found the head of a leaping Diego Casillas. Casillas ran through the center of the box and was able to get a free header at goal. His shot was put over a reaching Josh Cohen.
Republic looked to respond in the 87th minute. A set piece opportunity from the right flank, put in by Villyan Bijev, got to Matt Mahoney at the far post. His shot was blocked by a Fresno defender and smothered by their keeper.
The game got chippy at the end, but Fresno held on to win 1-0. Despite the chances, the Republic couldn’t find the back of the net. Fresno improved to 8-2-7 on 31 points, holding 3rd place. The Republic moved to 7-7-2 on 23 points, remaining at 9th in the West. The Republic will look to recover against another tough opponent in Portland Timbers 2.
Sacramento Republic FC: 0 goals, 15 shots, 4 shots on target, 55.6 possession, 3 corners, 3 offsides, 1 yellow card, 1 red card.
Fresno FC: 1 goal, 7 shots, 1 shot on target, 44.4 possession, 2 corners, 0 offsides, 2 yellow cards, 1 red card.
Republic FC Lineup: Josh Cohen, Shannon Gomez, Dekel Keinan, Matt Mahoney, Jordan McCrary, Ray Saari, Hayden Partain (OUT, 72’), Elliott Hord (OUT, 70’), Sam Werner (OUT, 78’), Cameron Iwasa, Stefano Bonomo
Republic FC Bench: Rafael Diaz, Juan Barahona, Mitchell Taintor, Villyan Bijev (IN, 70’), Jaime Villarreal (IN, 72’), Tyler Blackwood, Keven Aleman (IN, 78’)