IRVINE, California (April 16, 2022) –Republic FC split the points with Orange County SC in the two clubs first meeting of the season, playing to a 1-1 result at Championship Soccer Stadium in Irvine Saturday night.
Sacramento got things moving quickly – 90 seconds into the match, a Dan Casey long ball found Damia Viader streaking down the left flank. The 2021 League One Defender of the Year put a quick move on Patrick Rakovsky coming out to cut off his angle, before putting the ball in the back of the net for his first score in league play with the Indomitable Club.
Great press for Sacramento kept them on the front foot throughout the match, taking advantage of the host’s formation that left just three on the backline. Keko and Rodrigo Lopez took great advantage of space provided by the hosts, resulting in the club’s fourth straight league contest with at least 10 shots to open the season.
The hosts equalized mid-way through the first half; Orange County’s Erick Torres put one in from the penalty spot after Milan Illoski was taken down in the penalty box by Jack Gurr pursuing from behind. The attempt would be all the SoCal club would generate until late in the second half, when a tremendous save from Danny Vitiello kept the club’s best chance out of net in the 77th minute.
A great cross from Keko, who made his 300th career appearance in the fixture, nearly found the back of the net moments later for Sacramento but the attempt went just wide of the left post. The Spaniard was lifted in the 66th minute for Emil Cuello after tallying two shots and creating two chances.
Strong one-on-one defending kept the hosts from pulling ahead, especially as Orange County upped the pressure on Sacramento’s backline. Lee Desmond and Dan Casey turned in another good performance, keeping pressure off Danny Vitiello in his third appearance with Sacramento.
Republic FC has a quick turnaround this week, as the club welcomes Central Valley Fuego FC in the third round of the U.S. Open Cup. The two clubs will face off for a spot in the fourth round draw at Heart Health Park Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at SacRepublicFC.com/single-match-tickets, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN+.
Sacramento Republic FC 1 – 1 Orange County SC
Championship Soccer Stadium, Irvine, California
April 16, 2022
Scoring Summary: SAC–Damia Viader (Dan Casey) 2’ OC – Erick Torres (penalty) 26’
Misconduct Summary: SAC – Jack Gurr (caution) 25’, Matt LaGrassa (caution) 29’, Lee Desmond (caution) 58’, Emil Cuello (caution) 75’, Rodrigo Lopez (caution) 87’ OC –Mikko Kuningas (caution) 30’ Kobi Henry (caution) 31’, Alex Villanueva (caution) 72’, Korede Osundina (caution) 90+3’
Sacramento Republic FC: Danny Vitiello, Duke Lacroix, Lee Desmond, Dan Casey, Jack Gurr, Nick Ross (Luis Felipe 45’), Matt LaGrassa, Damia Viader (Ferrety Sousa 85’), Rodrigo Lopez (C), Keko Gontan (Emil Cuello 66’), Luther Archimede (Zeiko Lewis 71’)
Unused substitutes: Carlos Saldana, Conor Donovan, Rafael Jauregui
Stats – Shots:12, Shots on Goal: 4,Saves: 2,Fouls: 13, Corner Kicks: 2,Offsides: 1
Orange County SC: Patrick Rakovsky, Hunter Gorskie, Kobi Henry, Albi Skendie, Alex Villanueva (Danilo Acosta 84’), Daniel Pedersen (C), Kevin Partida (Thomas McCabe 81’), Seth Casiple, Milan Illoski, Mikko Kuningas (Korede Osundina 81’), Erick Torres (Sean Okoli 81’)
Unused substitutes: Colin Shutler, Michael Orozco, Tony Rocha
Stats – Shots: 8, Shots on Goal: 3,Saves: 3, Fouls: 2, Corner Kicks: 5, Offsides: 3