Republic FC started the match very strong, attacking the Oklahoma City Energy FC defense early and often. Republic FC saw their first strong chance just 30 seconds into the match after a play down the left side where midfielder Daniel Trickett-Smith received the ball around 30 yards out and unleashed a powerful shot. Trickett-Smith’s shot looked destined for the near post, but Energy FC goalkeeper Cody Laurendi was there for the sliding save.
Despite Republic FC enjoying over 60 percent of the possession in the first half, it was Energy FC who would break through first in the 30th minute. Defender Michael Harris made an impressive flip throw from near the centerline that deflected off the head of a Republic FC player toward the middle of the box. Midfielder Miguel Gonzalez was in the right place at the right time as he redirected the deflection with a beautiful bicycle kick past Republic FC keeper Evan Newton and into the bottom left corner of the goal, giving Energy FC the 1-0 lead going into halftime.
Republic FC continued their pressure on the Energy FC defense in the second half, seeing their first chance on goal in the 57th minute. Defender James Kiffe threw the ball in to forward Tyler Blackwood on the left side of the box. Blackwood immediately played the ball back to Kiffe who split the defense before laying it off to forward Wilson Kneeshaw. The forward chased the ball back toward the middle before playing it back to Trickett-Smith who hit a strong shot from about 25 yards out in the middle of the field, but Laurendi was there again for the save maintaining Energy FC’s 1-0 lead.
In the 82nd minute Republic FC was reduced to just 10-men. Defender Chris Christian was shown a second yellow card for a hard tackle on Miguel Gonzalez near the middle of the pitch. The red card was the first for Republic FC in 2017, but their third in Oklahoma City since 2014.
Republic FC battled hard for the final eight minutes despite being down a man, getting one of their best looks at goal three minutes into stoppage time. Kiffe made a good move down the left side of the field, splitting the two-man defense near the edge of the box, before sending a cross toward the back post. Substitute forward Trevin Caesar made a good run to be in position, but his header went high.
Republic FC moves to 3-1-0 on the season and are still atop the Western Conference table. They will continue their road stretch on Saturday, Apr. 15 when they take on Swope Park Rangers KC. Kickoff is 5 p.m. PT. Republic FC will return to Papa Murphy’s Park on Saturday Apr. 22 when they take on Portland Timbers 2. Tickets are available on Ticketmaster.com.
Scoring Summary: OKC – Miguel Gonzalez 30
Misconduct Summary: SAC – Chris Christian (caution) 45, Chris Christian (caution/ejection) 82. OKC – Wojciech Wojcik (caution) 62.
Sacramento Republic FC – Evan Newton; Elliott Hord (Trevin Caesar 60), Emrah Klimenta (Lamin Suma 90), Chris Christian, James Kiffe; Jeremy Hall, Danny Barrera, Daniel Trickett-Smith, Tyler Blackwood (Harry Williams 60); Wilson Kneeshaw, Sammy Ochoa.
Subs Not Used: Dominik Jakubek; Julius James, Gabe Gissie, Adam Moffat.
Stats: Shots: 7, Shots on Goal: 3, Saves: 1, Fouls: 11, Corner Kicks: 4, Offside: 2.
Oklahoma City Energy FC – Cody Laurendi; Michael Harris, Mickey Daly, Coady Andrews, Anthony Wallace; Daniel Gonzalez, Coy Craft (Kyle Hyland 60), Philip Rasmussen (Alejandro Covarrubias 66), Miguel Gonzalez; Wojciech Wojcik, Alex Dixon (Danni König 72).
Subs Not Used: CJ Cochran; Juan Guzman, Daniel Jackson, Luis Martinez.
Stats: Shots: 6, Shots on Goal: 2, Saves: 3, Fouls: 14, Corner Kicks: 2, Offside: 2.