As Sacramento Gold FC rests during its second bye week of the year, the playoff race is beginning to take shape across the West Region. Here's a recap of last week's games, as well as a look at what's in store this week.
GOLDEN GATE CONFERENCE
SAN LEANDRO, Calif. -- No recap available at this time.
OXNARD, Calif. -- No recap available at this time.
TEMECULA, Calif. -- Two months ago Orange County FC thrashed Temecula FC by a score of 6-1 and gave their fans plenty to cheer about in what was the perfect home opener for one of the NPSL’s newest clubs.
Over the weekend would be the second meeting of the two teams, but this time things would be different. Led by former Scottish international Willie Donachie, Temecula have made huge improvements since the 6-1 defeat at the hands of OCFC. Donachie was known to be a tough defender in his days as a footballer and it’s clear to see that his swagger has rubbed off on his players.
Twenty-six minutes into the match it was Temecula that got on the board first courtesy of a goal scored by Enxhi Marina. Five minutes after the restart Temecula increased their lead to 2-0 after a strike from Joseph Ciochetto.
In what seems to be a reoccurring story of this season, OCFC head coach Paul Caligiuri looked to his bench for the remedy. Newcomer Daniel Crisostomo and striker Staforde Palmer came on for midfielders Armando Flores and Jonathan Romero at the start of the second half. But the substitutes would leave it late to strike.
SAN DIEGO, Calif. -- With their first clean sheet of the season, the Albion SC PROS dominated the top-ranked Riverside Coras 3-0 at home on May 20.
The PROS handed the Coras their first loss of the season and are within striking distance of third place Orange County FC in NPSL Southwest Conference standings.
“We had numerous opportunities at goal. We were very disciplined. We didn’t give much away, and guys were tremendous all throughout … they were fantastic tonight,” said Head Coach Ziggy Korytoski.
The PROS defense started strong in minute 7 with a save by keeper Jean Antoine. Then again in minute 15 as Nano Pereira deflected the ball, forcing play in the opposite direction well before it reached Antoine. “We’ve been working a lot on our defensive shape and good to see it paid off,” said Man of the Match Sean Callahan.
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. -- The Southern California Sports Club opened the second half of its 2017 National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) campaign in good shape as the team achieved a promising 4-1 win over City of Angels FC Saturday, May 20th at the Fairplex. Jesus Soria, Alex Zaragoza, Roonie Moreno, and Jorge Moreno scored for SoCal SC.
With the result, SoCal SC moved one spot up in the Southwest Conference standings, jumping to sixth place with 11 points (three wins, two ties, and four losses).
SoCal SC, which was led by Interim Head Coach Samuel Bernabe, had the debut of two new signings as American midfielders Jacob Arrieta and Andy Ortega were subbed in at the 72nd and the 75th minutes, respectively.
“I thought it was a pretty good game,” said the 23-year-old Arrieta. “For my first few minutes in I felt like I got hold of the ball and I felt like the team made it easy for me to control it in the middle. Everybody around me was pretty calm and they knew it was time to close out the game. And I felt like I was able to help to close it out with.”
HILLSBORO, Ore. -- PDX FC remained unbeaten in NPSL play after a 2-1 home win over Pierce County FC. The win keeps the first-year club at the top of the Northwest Conference standings for the second straight week.
The first half saw the visitors get the better of the scoring chances, but PDX keeper Oscar Torres made several key saves to keep his side in the game. The first came on a Pierce County corner kick in the 13th minute. Torres made another key save in the 28th minute after Pierce County once again got free on a corner. The sides went into the half tied at 0-0.
PDX FC were the better of the two teams in the second half, creating two goal scoring chances within five minutes of the whistle. The first came from a long ball from Steven Evans to his younger brother Nick. Evans shrugged off the center back before hitting a bouncing ball straight to the keeper.
PDX finally broke through in the 65th minute after winger Matt Paine swung a ball into the box that was met by defender Gustavo Torres. Torres headed the ball back across the face of the goal and it was met by halftime substitute Jake Young, who deflected the ball into the net for a 1-0 lead.
PORTLAND, Ore. -- No recap available at this time.
BEMERTON, Wash. -- In an entertaining and hard-fought match against cross-state Spokane Shadow, Kitsap Soccer Club took a second-half lead but couldn’t hold onto it. Sean Bowman opened the scoring in the 59th minute, fresh onto the field as a halftime sub, but Jesse Retan pulled back an equalizer in the 71st to level the score.
The game started with Kitsap on the front foot, keeping the ball in Spokane’s end for much of the opening 15 minutes. Nana Boakye recorded the game’s first shot in the eighth minute, and captain Chuy Sánchez had a near-post shot saved by Bryan Hernandez in the 19th.
Hernandez made an impressive foot save on Javo Reyes in the 33rd minute after Kazu Hamaguchi’s cutback from the left wing, and the first half finished scoreless. Bowman entered at halftime for Kitsap as the first substitution of the season, and the University of San Francisco man wasted no time getting involved.
He put his first effort just wide off Brian Charles’ cross in the 48th minute, but just over 10 minutes later, he would make good on his continued forays in front of goal. Romario Lomeli sent in a ball from the left flank that Bowman dove to head into the back of the net and give the NPSL newcomers the lead.
TUKWILA, Wash. -- It looked like a loss was looming when OSA scored in early stoppage time at Starfire for the Shadow Men's First Team... but Jared Davis (pictured) provided a HUGE cross from deep in the box less than a minute later that Dana Kowachek buried for the dramatic 1-1 equalizer in a National Premier Soccer League draw.
In the first half, Bryan Hernandez made a brilliant save midway through the period when a free kick from the right side into the box was volleyed on goal.