After claiming three points in an exciting comeback victory over Las Vegas Lights FC, Republic FC hits the road for its third meeting of the season with Pacific Division leader Phoenix Rising FC. The Boys in Old Glory Red will look to contain the potent offense of their Arizona foes in pursuit of points in their seventh straight match.
Sacramento enters this week on a high after coming from behind at home to take their third straight win this season over Las Vegas. A second half brace from Cameron Iwasa erased a 1-0 deficit in the first half, while Sacramento’s back line held Las Vegas to five total shots. Saturday’s success added a sixth game to the club’s undefeated streak – dating back to July 14 in Las Vegas.
Mark Briggs’ men have begun to welcome back a number of players from injuries. On Saturday, midfielder Jaime Villarreal made his first appearance since June 26, and forward Maalique Foster made his first appearance since signing with Sacramento in December. The Jamaican born forward had missed the first half of the season recovering from a surgical procedure to repair a groin injury.
Phoenix enters this week on a bit of a slide. After winning four consecutive contests, the Arizona club has split points in two straight with Las Vegas Lights and Orange County SC. They remain one of the most dangerous sides in USL, boasting the league’s best scoring differential.
While most of the attention for Phoenix will go to attacking duo Solomon Asante and Santi Moar, who have combined for 16 scores this season, midfield counterpart Aodhan Quinn has been equally impressive this season. Quinn earned two straight selections for Team of the Week in Weeks 15 and 16, and has scored in three of Phoenix’s last four matches, including a 64th minute game-winner against Oakland Roots on August 4.
Saturday will mark the 18th all-time meeting between Phoenix and Sacramento. The Boys in Old Glory Red hold a slight advantage historically with a record of 6-5-6 (3-3-1 when visiting the Arizona Club in the regular season,) while outscoring Rising FC 17-16. However, Phoenix has taken victories in the club’s two previous contests this season, securing three points May 29 and again on June 26.
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