On a smoky night in Sin City, Las Vegas Lights FC went toe-to-toe with powerhouse Phoenix Rising FC and came away with a point in the 2-2 draw. Roberto Molina and Mohamed Traore scored for the hosts while Rising FC’s goals came from Santi Moar and Aodhan Quinn.
19-14 shot advantage for Lights FC. The last time these clubs met, Rising FC set USL Championship records for shots and shots on target. Last night, they were actually outshot by Lights FC and that was a good indicator of the hosts playing on the front foot for large portions of the match.
Three Brightest Lights
BGN’s Man of the Match Roberto Molina: He turned in a very impressive individual effort on the opening goal and also assisted on the equalizer. He finished with three chances created.
Mohamed Traore: An absolute rocket from close range on the late equalizer and tallied two key passes, five interceptions, five clearances, and four tackles.
Tony Leone: When the Lights needed a stop, he stepped up throughout the action. Leone made seven clearances, three interceptions, and committed zero fouls. He also assisted on Molina’s goal and completed 80.9% of his passes.
- While a draw at home usually isn’t something to celebrate, this was a huge result as they were facing the best club statistically in the league and came from behind in the second half. Big performance from the young Lights.
- Nathan Sepulveda stepped into the midfield for Danny Crisostomo, who signed with LAFC this week. The 18-year-old responded by creating three chances and looked confident on the ball.
- Two players that stood out for the spark they can provide are Bruce El-Mesmari and Danny Trejo. Both are skilled and quick on the ball and can create an opportunity in the blink of an eye. Trejo is just getting back from an injury and the 2021 LAFC draft pick looked promising in his late appearance.
- Santi Moar’s penalty came after he was chopped down by Lights FC goalkeeper Alex Rando. It was a no-brainer penalty call and the Spanish forward buried the shot from the spot.
- The smoke from the California wildfires I mentioned in the preview was noticeable. Around kickoff, the air quality was listed at 156 per BreezoMeter. That came with the description of “Everyone may begin to experience health effects. Members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects”.
Next Saturday, Las Vegas Lights FC are back on the road and will face Sacramento Republic FC. Mark Briggs’ side finished even with Tacoma Defiance last time out and will take on Oakland Roots SC mid-week before they host the Lights.