Around the West: Ready to Roll

While Sacramento Gold FC gets ready for its NPSL opener Saturday, West Region action is already underway. Here's a recap of last week's games, as well as a look at what's in store this week.


SAN LEANDRO, Calif. -- The NPSL Golden Gate Conference kicked off this weekend with the 2nd season of the Alameda County Derby between CD Aguiluchos USA and the East Bay Stompers. The first season series last year between these two close rivals went the way of CD Aguiluchos as they won 2 and tied 1 of the 3 matches played in 2016. This season the two rivals are even closer in proximity as the CD Aguliuchos played their first NPSL game since moving from Raimondi Park in Oakland to Burrell Field in San Leandro. The two are now located less than 10 miles apart, a short drive on I-880. Their proximity makes them two of the closest rivals regularly playing in any level of US Soccer.

The first leg of the 2017 series was no different than in 2016 as CD Aguiluchos took their NPSL home opener 2-1 over the Stompers. The match started off rather slowly with neither side willing to take any risk. For the first 30 minutes both sides would see their best chances come off of set pieces. However neither keeper was tested by any of the chances.

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RIVERSIDE, Calif. -- It’s early yet in the 2017 National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) season to issue any definitive pronouncements, but by beating defending Southwest Conference champion Albion SC PROS, 2-0, Sunday night, Riverside Coras certainly made a statement.

“This was a true test to show what we can do this year,” said Julio Ayala, who netted the winning goal for Coras in the 66th minute. “Last year when they were champs, everyone was trying to go for them and I think this year we’re going to show we’re the team to go for.”

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LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- The Southern California Sports Club started its second-ever National Premier League (NPSL) campaign with a sound road win. Playing at the LA Valley College, in Los Angeles, SoCal SC defeated expansion franchise City of Angels FC 5-1 this Saturday.

Midfielder Eric Gonzalez, one of SoCal SC’s captains, led the win scoring a brace and was selected as the Man of the Match. Fullback Alex Zaragoza, midfielder Glenn Verley and forward Edmilson Santos added one goal each. SoCal SC used returning players from its first-ever NPSL campaign as the backbone of the team, with more than half of its starters been on their second year with the club.

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MESA, Ariz. -- FC Arizona scored two goals on each side of the half and cruised to a 4-0 victory, its first National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) victory in franchise history.

Finding the back of the net in the first half was Kenny McAvoy and Cesar Mexia with Chris Sanchez and Chris Ramsell scoring in the second half.

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IRVINE, Calif. -- It was the perfect home opener for one of the newest NPSL teams. Everything worked out for Orange County FC as they dominated Temecula FC from start to finish on their way to a 6-1 victory in front of 876 fans in attendance.

Both teams began the 2017 season with draws and many were expecting a close match but a fast start from OCFC set the tone early.

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