Sacramento Republic FC (3-2-0) return home after a three-match road stretch to take on Portland Timbers 2 (0-5-0) on Saturday, Apr. 22. Kickoff for the match, presented by UC Davis Health, is 7:30 p.m. PT at Papa Murphy’s Park. Tickets to the match are still available at Ticketmaster.com.
This will be the first of two matches between Timbers 2 and Republic FC in 2017. Republic FC and T2 split the season series last season, with T2 winning 1-0 on Apr. 17, 2016 and Republic FC taking the second match 4-0 on Aug. 20, 2016. Republic FC are 3-2-0 all-time against T2, including a perfect 2-0-0 at home.
Republic FC return to Papa Murphy’s Park after a road trip that saw the club play three matches in eight days and travel almost 7,000 miles. This is the club’s most treacherous road trip and one of the most difficult in the USL thus far. Despite the difficult nature of the trip, Republic FC finished with three points, enough to keep them within a point of the first spot in the Western Conference table.
Republic FC continued their quality early season performance on the ball with the team controlling 52 percent of the possession and completing an impressive 80 percent of its passes on their road trip. Republic FC are currently among the top in the USL in passing accuracy, completing 79 percent of their passes on the season. Republic FC are also currently second in the Western Conference in average passes per match, averaging 458 per match.
Forwards Wilson Kneeshaw, Tyler Blackwood and Sammy Ochoa continued their hot start to the USL season on the road trip, with Kneeshaw and Blackwood each recording a goal and Ochoa recording an assist. Ochoa leads the club with three goals and two assists, with Kneeshaw following with two goals and an assist, and Blackwood adding a goal and an assist on the season.
Republic FC’s defense was strong during the road stretch allowing only one goal in each of the three matches. Republic FC’s defense is allowing less than a goal a match and has not allowed any opponent to score more than once in a match this season. Republic FC are currently fifth in the Western Conference for goals allowed this season, although all of the teams that are ahead of Republic FC have played less matches.
T2 enter the match currently on a five-match losing streak. Despite the losing streak, T2 have been in all of their matches, losing each match by a single goal. T2 started the 2016 season in a very similar fashion, losing four of their first five matches, with their only victory coming over Republic FC on Apr. 17. T2 went on to finish the season with a five-match win streak and missing out on making the playoffs because of the second USL tie-breaker, goal differential.
19-year-old forward Augustine Williams has been impressive in the early season, scoring two of T2’s three goals so far this season. Williams was born in Sierra Leone and moved to the United States as a teenager. Williams joined T2 in Aug. 2016, making 11 appearances, scoring three goals and recording an assist on the season.
In their last match, against Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 on Apr. 16, T2 had eight MLS loan players suit up in their starting lineup. One of these loan players was Sacramento-native Amobi Okugo. The midfielder, who attended Rio Americano and Jesuit High Schools in Sacramento, joined the Timbers in 2016 after splitting time with Sporting KC and Orlando City SC in 2015. Okugo played his first five MLS seasons with the Philadelphia Union. It is not known if Okugo will play against Republic FC on Saturday.
Tickets are still available at Ticketmaster.com. 100 tickets will also be available for walkup purchase on Saturday, as there will be for every home Republic FC match this season. The match will be broadcast live on CW31 and Sports 1140 KHTK and streamed live on SacRepublicFC.com/matchday-guide. Updates of the match will be also be provided via Twitter @SacRepublicFC or using #SACvPOR.