Irvine, Calif. (May 17, 2023) – Republic FC fell 1-0 Wednesday night in Irvine, bringing its unbeaten run in league play to an end at nine matches against in-state foe Orange County SC. Through 10 matches, Republic FC sit atop the USL Championship leaderboard with 21 points – and the last club to remain undefeated until tonight.
Sacramento controlled the tempo throughout the contest, but numbers behind the ball for the hosts kept chances for the Quails to a minimum. A tough start sealed the game after the club was kept scoreless for the second time this season.
Orange County opened the scoring first, putting Sacramento at an early deficit when forward Milan Iloski found the net in the fifth minute off an assist from Marc McNulty. It was the third goal of the season for the 2022 Golden Boot winner.
Sacramento immediately began fighting back, generating the better quality opportunities for the remainder of the half. A close-range chance from Zeiko Lewis in the 17th minute was broken up by an opposing defender, and ten minutes later, Jack Gurr rattled the woodwork with a long-range ball from the left.
The hosts nearly doubled their lead soon after at the tail end of the 13th minute, but Carlos Saldaña kept the deficit to one with a leaping save to stop a chance from Emil Neilsen. Saldaña finished the contest with four saves in his first league action of the season.
A conservative defensive approach kept the hosts advantage intact throughout the second half. Sacramento nearly equalized with 15 minutes to go, when Russell Cicerone came close to finding net the 75th minute. But his attempt was stopped by the keeper to keep the Quails without a score.
Sacramento finished the match with 10 men after Arnold Lopez was shown a second caution in stoppage time. The midfielder will miss Sacramento’s next contest against Oakland Roots.
Republic FC returns home this coming Saturday, when rival Oakland Roots SC visits Heart Health Park for the second time this season. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m., and the match will be broadcast live in English and Spanish on Antenna TV 40.2, FOX40.com and the FOX40 News mobile app, and streaming on ESPN+.
Sacramento Republic FC 0 – 1 Orange County SC
Championship Soccer Stadium, Irvine, California
May 17, 2023
Scoring Summary: SAC – None OC – Milan Iloski (Marc McNulty) 5’
Misconduct Summary: SAC – Zeiko Lewis (caution) 46’, Keko Gontàn (caution) 82’, Arnold Lopez (caution) 87’, Arnold Lopez (second caution and ejection) 90+5’ OC – Markus Nakkim (caution) 23’, Owen Lambe (caution) 42’, Daniel Pedersen (caution) 87’
Sacramento Republic FC: Carlos Saldaña, Shane Wiedt, Conor Donovan (C), Damia Viader (Aldair Sanchez 62’), Lee Desmond (Keko Gontán 78’) Matt LaGrassa (Arnold Lopez 78’), Nick Ross, Jack Gurr, Russell Cicerone, Sebastian Herrera, (Luther Archimède 62’) Zeiko Lewis (Rafael Jauregui 62’)
Unused substitutes: Danny Vitiello, Jared Timmer
Stats – Shots: 11, Shots on Goal: 3, Saves: 4, Fouls: 15, Corner Kicks: 5, Offsides: 2
Orange County SC: Coliin Shutler, Ryan Doghman, Dillon Powers, Markus Nakkim (C), Owen Lambe (Brent Richards 45’), Milan Iloski, Seth Casiple, Kyle Scott (Brian Iloski 66’), Ashish Chatta, Marc McNulty (Bryce Jamison 45’), Emil Nielsen (Daniel Pederson 66’)
Unused Substitutes: Cody Cropper, Ashton Miles, Benjamin Norris
Stats – Shots: 15, Shots on Goal: 5, Saves: 3, Fouls: 21, Corner Kicks: 5, Offsides: 0