Las Vegas Lights FC vs Phoenix Rising FC

Match Recap:  Lights FC vs Phoenix Rising FC – 8/23/2020

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The Las Vegas Lights come back from a 2 goal deficit to end in a tie against Phoenix Rising FC. 

 

From the 2nd half on, it looked like Phoenix Rising FC was starting to run away with the game. However, the Lights FC sparked up a late surge of attack during extra stoppage time to avoid a loss. 

 

Phoenix Rising’s front 3 attackers are a force to reckon with. 

 

Lights FC
Photo Credit: Modern Ghana

Phoenix was able to take an early lead within the first five minutes of the game. Off an early counter-attack, right-wing Soloman Asante sent in a perfect cross to land at the feet of Rufat Dadashov, who was able to send a bottom-left shot in for a goal. Rising FC’s “outside-in” attack look to crash in on the breakaway either from a through ball or by simply dribbling out wide to set up a shot or pass in the box.

Prime example, Dadashov led winger Junior Flemmings with a through ball down the sideline where Flemmings outpaced the defense and chipped the keeper for Phoenix’s second goal of the match. This was Flemmings 10th of the season, which keeps him at top of the leaderboard, leading the USL Championship league in goals. 

Solomon Asante also added another goal to his totals from what may have been a debatable penalty inside the box. Lights’ right-back, Jordan Murrell came in for a challenge when the referee called a foul on what appeared to be two players’ legs getting tangled up, which is likely to happen a lot in a soccer match. Nonetheless, the goal still counts, and just like that, Phoenix was now up two goals, which is an important aspect later in this game. 

 

It was a hard fought game between the two clubs, and although the Las Vegas Lights did not come out victorious, they still have many positives to take from this game. 

 

Lights FC
Photo Credit: OurSports Central

Las Vegas held their own throughout the entire match. It was a back-and-forth game between the two as far as possession and pressure on the opponent’s side of the field. Through a third of the game, Rising FC did an excellent job closing in on the Lights’ passing lanes. Vegas was forced to play the conventional scheme of swinging the ball sideline to sideline until finding a chance to cross it in and hope the rest of the attack made their runs to get a foot or head on the ball. 

As a matter of fact, the Vegas soccer club’s best chance at goal in the first half was from Junior Sandoval. He had a shot lined up just inside the box with no defender pressing when he sailed the shot just over the crossbar. 

After an 80th minute goal by Yamikani Chester, the Lights fell quiet. Although there were no fans in attendance, Asante’s 90th-minute questionable penalty put the whole morale of the home team’s energy to silence. 

 

The Lights’ competitiveness saves the day. 

 

Down three goals to one with no idea when the match can end, Las Vegas could have given up. 

 

Lights FC
Photo Credit: OurSports Central

After many attempts at driving down the field before time was up, Vegas finally caught a break when Chester’s header bounced off A.J. Cochran for an own-goal. This was a pivotal moment in the game as the Lights kept the pressure on and took their attacking power to the next level. 

It all came down to what could have been the last minute in the game when Junior Burgos sent in a cross where homegrown player Frank Frischknecht back-heeled a ball to Ramon Del Campo for an easy tap in. 

The Lights may have not secured a much needed three points, but they held their own against the best-ranked team in the table. Not only that, but they also proved they could compete with anyone and should keep this level of play going into further games ahead. 

 

Do not miss the Las Vegas Lights FC take on their next opponent, Orange County SC. Kickoff is at 7:00 pm PT on August 25. Viewers can watch on ESPN Deportes or ESPN+.

 

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-Justin Brooks – Franchise Sports Media

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