LAS VEGAS (July 27, 2019) – Rio Grande Valley FC (6-10-5, 23 pts.) faced Las Vegas Lights FC (7-8-4, 26 pts.) at Cashman Field on Saturday night. The home crowd helped energize the Lights to a convincing 1-2 victory at home.
Things got rolling quickly in the contest for the home team, Las Vegas, as a shot by Irvin Parra went just right of the goal in the 7th minute, placing the Toros defense on notice. Just a couple of minutes later, in the 9th minute of play, Parra once again created danger inside the attacking third, this time placing a softly touched ball to the center of the goal which was deflected by Nico Corti.
Almost one minute later, in the 10th minute, the persistent offensive attack by the Lights payed off when Gabe Robinson headed the ball into the top right side of the net, off a corner kick lob. The early goal placed RGV on high alert.
A rather tame first portion of the match for the Toros was quickly changed when Carlos Small equalized, 1-1, at the 27th minute as he made his way into the box, prior to a nice pass from Houston Dynamo loanee, Eric Bird. Small dribbled some before shooting a well-placed ball to the far right side of the goal, away from the keeper, who was closing in on the play.
A few moments later, in the 31st minute, RGV FC once again found themselves behind after Villareal and Parra combined for a lethal attacking play. Jose Villareal dribbled up the left-wing and sent a dangerous cross into the center of the box where Parra struck a hard header toward the left side of the goal, off the hands of a diving Corti who couldn’t stop the ball, 1-2.
The Toros tallied three total shots on target before the half ended and was able to retain 59 percent of the possession. As predicted, the fast-paced environment of the smaller field dimensions had both teams zooming back and forth as they looked to punish, Las Vegas capitalizing on two of their three-shot on goal attempts.
After a rather quiet start to the second half for both sides, in the 58th minute, Pablo Cruz broke away on a clear path and sent a clean pass to Junior Sandoval, who then shot a laser to the center of the goal where Corti then blocked the ball, sending it clear of danger.
Near the 67-minute mark, Eric Bird shot a well-placed ball to the bottom right side of the goal with some power but, a fully extended Olsen was able to punch it clear. This was the only true dangerous created chance for RGV FC in the second half so far.
Both sides provided valid attempts at counterattacking and attempting to create chances but a quiet second half would carry on into the late stages of the game as the match remained in favor of the Lights, 1-2 at the 88-minute mark.
Jonathan Levin fouled Camilo Monroy just inches away from the box, to avoid a penalty, instead conceding a close free kick to RGV in the 89th minute. The free-kick was the last clear chance for the Toros as the match neared its end. On the ensuing play, Bird was unable to make contact with the cross and the Vegas defense cleared the ball from the box to ice the game.
Las Vegas regained momentum at home by locking in the win at Cashman Field, earning three more points to continue their quest into landing a playoff bid. For RGV FC another road loss tainted their record.
RGV FC was able to claim the possession category tonight by keeping the ball 61 percent of the match, however, it was not enough as quick goals and counters cost them the road points. On the night, RGV totaled 14 shots, six on target while frustrating Las Vegas enough to make them concede 23 fouls and earn two yellow cards in their own home.
Next for RGV FC is a home matchup against Reno 1868 FC on August 3. Kickoff will be at 7:30 p.m. CT. The match will be available on ESPN+ and Somos El Valle 5.2. Updates on the match will be provided via Twitter at @RGVFC or by following #SomosToros. To see more matchday information, visit www.rgvfc.com.
Scoring Summary: RGV FC – C. Small 27’ (Assist by Bird)
LV – G. Robinson 10’ (Assist by Parra), I. Parra 31’ (Assist by Villareal)
Misconduct Summary: RGV FC – Bird YC 38’
LV – Tabort Etaka YC 41’, Rojas YC 88’
LV – Olsen, Garcia-Lopez, Robinson, Torres, Rivas, Cruz, Sandoval, Levin, Parra (Rojas 69’), Villareal (Echavarria 71’), Tabort Etaka
Subs: Hobbs, Sousa, Fehr, De La Fuente, Alvarez
Stats: Shots: 11, Shots on Goal: 4, Saves: 5, Fouls: 23 , Corner Kicks: 6, Offsides: 3.
RGV FC – Corti, Donovan, Adams, Junqua (Coronado 77’), Samuels, Martinez, Bird, Enriquez, Monroy, Small, Rodriguez (Hernandez 71’)
Subs: WiIlis, Castellanos, Cabrera, Garza, Arcila
Stats: Shots: 14, Shots on Goal: 6, Saves: 2, Fouls: 8, Corner Kicks: 6, Offsides: 1.
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