In a match that including three penalty kicks and a weather delay, everything finished level between Las Vegas Lights FC and Tulsa Roughnecks FC.
One of Three Keys Achieved
(from the match preview’s Three Keys to a Vegas Victory)
X Avoid the trap game
While they didn’t become Tulsa’s second win of the season, Las Vegas cannot be happy with a draw. If they are trying to make the playoffs, these are three points they desperately needed.
X Strike Early
The very opposite happened for Lights FC. Rather than getting an early lead, they went behind in the fourth minute due to a penalty kick for Tulsa. They would erase the deficit before the half, but they did not get out on the right foot.
✔ Precise Passing
When they weren’t just lobbing the ball forward, Las Vegas was somewhat crisp in their possession and passing. They held an edge in possession and completed over 70% of their passes, 61% in the attacking half. The quality controlling of the ball gave them some solid stretches of dangerous attacking play.
In a match between two teams comfortably outside the playoff picture, there was some quality soccer played. Neither team sat back and allowed the other to dominate the game, each side had stretches of quality play, and there was action until the final whistle. The Lights were heavily shorthanded on defense, with no Joel Huiqui, Miguel Garduno, or Nico Samayoa. The back line played well given the circumstances. Every penalty kick is an adventure with the Lights. After last week’s debacle, Daigo Kobayashi stepped up and blasted the first chance home. Then, Sammy Ochoa launched his shot from the spot into orbit. I’ve always been of the thinking if someone coverts a penalty, they should take the next one. But, things are usually different when discussing Lights FC.
The Brightest Lights
Raul Mendiola: He is providing exactly what the Lights need in the final third. His shiftiness and skill on the ball creates problems for defenses. After being taken down in the box last week, he buried his chance against Tulsa after a smooth move around a defender.
Daigo Kobayashi: The veteran buried the club’s first penalty with ease. Kobayashi also did well to spray the ball out wide to the wingers. He completed 76% of his passes in the attacking half and had a team-high 65 touches.
Carlos Alvarez: Per usual, Alvarez was the action man for Lights FC. He ate up space between the Roughnecks’ midfield and back line.
James Murphy: The LAFC loanee showcased his skill in the midfield. He worked hard in the attack and defensively. Murphy completed 82% of his passes and was not afraid to rush back to snuff out a Tulsa counter attack. He is looking like a great defensive midfield partner for Kobayashi.
After two road matches, Lights FC return to Cashman Field on Saturday for their only home match of July. Las Vegas will face Saint Louis FC, who finished level with RGVFC yesterday.