One of the saddest stories from the Republic's 2016 season was Emrah Klimenta's season ending ACL injury, which he sustained against Seattle Sounders 2. The injury was devastating to both the team and the fans. How fitting, then, that his return to USL league play included a huge game-winning goal against the very team that ended his 2016 season? Welcome back, Emrah Klimenta.
In addition to the pair of signings that Sacramento Republic FC announced on Thursday, the team also picked up the option on five players: Emrah Klimenta, Dominik Jakubek, Evan Newton, Agustin Cazarez, and Carlos Rodriguez. Paul Buckle had the following to say about the decision to pick up the option on the five players.
All of these players were important members of our team last season. Augie is a pleasure to work with, is a hard worker and can play a lot of different positions, making him a great option to pick up. Emrah brings a lot of talent and is a very good professional. We have watched his rehab and he will greatly impact the team because he is such a great player down the right side. Carlos is also a very exciting pick up. We rate him very highly and he is a big part of our plans moving forward because of his ability on the ball, as well as his potential. Picking up Dominik and Evan gives us two great options in goal for next season. Dominik is someone that keeps himself very fit and strong and is a great example to the other players on how to be a professional.Picking up the options brought the total number of Republic players signed for the 2017 season (as far as we can tell) to eight, with Danny Barrera, Harry Williams, and new signing Enrique Montano being the others we know about so far. Although that is obviously not going to be even close to the final roster, this is a nice beginning to the roster building process for 2017.
Saint Louis FC announced today that they have signed former Republic and Orange County Blues midfielder, Ivan Mirković. The move, which should come as a surprise to absolutely no one, is undoubtedly influenced by the fact that Preki, who coached Mirković with the Republic in 2014 and (half of) 2015, recently took the reigns at Saint Louis. Mirković was a hugely important player in Preki's Republic teams and will likely play a key role for Saint Louis FC next season. He is the first former Republic player to join Saint Louis after Preki took over. Whether or not he will be the last remains to be seen.
Not a good look. Get a frickin Uber.
Octavio Guzman posted a thank you to the Sacramento Republic fanbase yesterday on his Instagram, saying that the fans have " been amazing to [him] for the past 3 years." Guzman also wished the fans and the club success in the future, kicking off speculation that the midfielder, who recently became the Republic's all-time leader in USL matches played, may not be returning next season.
Sacramento-native Cameron Iwasa capped off an amazing regular season against Tulsa Roughnecks tonight with his record-setting 12th goal of 2016. Iwasa's goal tonight broke the previous record of 11 goals set by Thomas Stewart in 2014. Iwasa also broke another of Stewart's records earlier in the season, scoring the fastest goal in Republic history against RGVFC on June 18th.
Today was a day of firsts for Wilson Kneeshaw. At kickoff he became the first of the Republic's new signings to make the matchday roster. Then, in the second half, he became the first of the new additions to make his debut. Finally, in the 83rd minute, he scored his first Republic goal.
Sacramento Republic FC fan, artist, and ICS community member The Jer , may have preemptively won matchday twitter with an early effort today. He made the most amazing match poster, complete with a grizzly bear and a fleeing Timber Joey. Is there's a better representation of what we want to see happen tonight? I don't think so. Bravo, Jeremy.
It's not every day that you see Sacramento Republic FC score a goal in the first half, much less one as great as Cameron Iwasa's tonight. The best part? With it only 38 seconds in, it was the fastest goal in Republic history!
Swope Park Rangers debuted their new mascot Hat Trick Harry today with a video that is part Messin' With Sasquach commercial, part found footage film, and all amazing.