All Toros, No Bull: RGV set to visit Rising FC

With a big road win last week, RGVFC will travel to the desert to face Phoenix Rising FC on Friday night.

Last week, Rio Grande Valley FC went on the road and stopped Portland Timbers 2 unbeaten run with a 2-1 Toros win. On Saturday, they will look to extend their own five-match undefeated streak when they face Phoenix Rising FC in Arizona on Friday night. (For those following me here from my Dynamo Theory crew, welcome! While there will be some tweaks to the previous format, this week’s is especially different due to no match being played.)

RGVFC Toros (3-3-3)

Things are really clicking for Gerson Echeverry’s side right now. Obviously, the five-match unbeaten streak is great. But, it’s how they are getting the results that’s the key. They’ve come back from deficits, they’ve held onto leads, and they’ve played at a good pace each time out.

Wilmer Cabrera Jr. was named to the USL Championship Team of the Week for his goal against Timbers 2. Losing him to the college ranks is proving to be more and more significant as he continues to contribute.

Another young player that has moved up the charts for me is Andrew Samuels. The Houston Dynamo draft pick has done well in defense and has some escapability when he’s on the ball. The fullback tandem of he and Robert Coronado is a good one.

Phoenix Rising FC (2-2-5)

Before the season, most USL Championship pundits, including the one typing this, expect Phoenix Rising to find their way back to the USL Cup final. They still could do that, but the start to this season has not gone according to plan.

Rising FC lost on the road last week against Orange County SC, the club they defeated in the Western Conference final last season. Jamaican forward Junior Flemmings has been a key contributor so far this season. He has a club-high four goals to go along with three assists. Veteran goalkeeper Zac Lubin has four clean sheets on the campaign, two of which came at Casino Arizona Field.

The club will likely be without superstar Solomon Asante, who was in Ghana over the weekend to attend the funeral of his father. Everyone at BGN extends their thoughts and love to Solomon and his family. They will definitely be missing striker Jason Johnson, a former Dynamo man, who is out for 4-6 months with a lower-body injury.

In their two matches last season, only one goal was scored with the clubs playing to a 0-0 draw before Phoenix won at home, 1-0.

This week’s Quote-A-Bull: Michael Salazar Jr.

On what has allowed the club’s offense to come to life recently:

“We know that we’re a good attacking group. Sometimes, all you need is one and then all the goals start coming and it gives the group confidence.”

The Particulars

RGVFC at Phoenix Rising FC

Friday night, 5/10, at 5:30 CDT

An Eloise Ending (Yes, you will still get one every week!)

Eloise says hello to her new fans at BGN. Photo Credit: Amy Merk



Carson A Merk

Reporting live from Sin City, I have covered both RGVFC and Las Vegas Lights FC since their inceptions. I also write profiles to highlight players from the NCAA to USL to NWSL and everywhere in between.