After a resounding bounce-back win Wednesday night, Republic FC heads to Southern Nevada to kick off a month-long road trip. The Indomitable Club faces off with Las Vegas Lights FC for the first time this season, making its first trip to Cashman Field since last August.
At a Glance: #SACvLV
- 7:30 p.m. PT kickoff
- Cashman Field, Las Vegas, Nevada
- Watch: Antenna TV 40.2, FOX40.com and the FOX40 News Mobile App, ESPN+
Republic FC – The Latest
Sacramento came out with fire Wednesday against Phoenix Rising FC, claiming their first league win over the Arizona side since 2018. It was a strong performance, with a full-squad effort keeping the visitors off the scoresheet in the second half. Jack Gurr returned to the starting XI with a goal and assist apiece, while Russell Cicerone took control over the league’s golden boot with his 11th on the season. The victory also was Head Coach Mark Briggs’ 50th as manager of the Indomitable Club since taking his post before the 2020 season.
Know Your Opponent
Las Vegas has continually been one of the league’s tougher teams to face this season. While the club initially struggled, it refuses to go down without a fight even against some of the tougher teams on their schedule. Wednesday, they visited Oakland Roots SC and went toe-to-toe with the East Bay club. If not for a great save by Oakland’s Paul Blanchette and an offside flag that took away a stoppage time equalizer, Lights FC may have come away with points.
Players to Watch
Vegas’ leading scorer Pato Botello suffered an injury earlier this month. In his place, Lights FC is likely to rely on a committee of attackers, including Preston Tabor Etaka, who Sacramento is familiar with from his stops at previous clubs, most recently New Mexico United, and midfielder Issa Rayyan, who was a key member of Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC in 2022. The club acquired forward Josh Dolling on loan from New Mexico just over a week ago; the Englishman has assisted three times this season and featured mainly as a substitute since joining Las Vegas.
Russell Cicerone has surged in recent weeks, scoring twice in his last three matches since the club’s July 15 match vs. Memphis. Following his goal on Wednesday night, he now leads the league’s Golden Boot race with 11 goals – which also moved him into sixth place, on Sacramento’s all-time single season scoring leaderboard.
Sacramento and Las Vegas faced off ten times in the past. Lights FC took the season fixture in 2022, securing a win on August 20 after the two sides drew 1-1 on April 30. Republic FC leads the all-time series with five wins, two losses, and three draws.
At Cashman Field, things are dead even with each side winning twice and the two splitting points once. Sacramento claimed six straight unbeaten results against the Southern Nevada club from 2019 to 2022.