Lights FC stuns Phoenix Rising late in a 3-3 draw

Las Vegas Lights FC were the clear underdogs at home last night as they hosted high-flying Phoenix Rising FC. Trailing for almost the entire match, the Lights were able to score twice in a lengthy amount of stoppage time to earn a shocking 3-3 draw at Cashman Field. Las Vegas got goals from Yamikani Chester, Ramon Martin Del Campo, and an own goal while Phoenix’s front three of Rufat Dadashov, Junior Flemmings, and Solomon Asante each scored once.

Key Stats

Two shots on target. The Lights actually managed to out-shoot Phoenix (22-19), but they only put two on frame compared to nine for Rising FC. However, the Lights were able to score both of their efforts on frame and got an OG for the third.

Nine minutes of stoppage time. We’ll go into the details of this added time a little later on, but the fact that there were nine minutes after the clock hit 90 played into the Lights’ comeback as they got goals #2 and #3 at 90+6′ and 90+9′.

Three Brightest Lights

Yamikani Chester: What an impact he’s made the last two matches. He replaced Raul Mendiola in the first half and brought a spark, just like he did in the win vs. Tacoma. He headed home the opening goal and then had his header re-directed in by A.J. Cochran for the second.

Blake Frischknecht: Another super-sub appearance, the rookie striker picked up two assists in his limited shift, including a lovely backheel on the equalizer. Once he’s fully fit, he will be a big-time player at the number nine for Lights FC.

Junior Burgos: He had a major performance off the bench, too. He smashed a shot off the post from distance with the Lights trailing by one and he provided the hockey assist on Del Campo’s equalizer.

Quick Kicks

  • So, the hot topic on Twitter post-match, especially from Phoenix supporters, was regarding the lengthy stoppage time as the Lights equalized in the 90+9′ with only four minutes held up on the board by the fourth official. Just watching the match live, I thought the time went a little overboard and that’s still my opinion, but BGN’s Alan Underwood, of Fair Weather Podcast and Orange and Black SoccerCast fame, broke down the math in a tweet here. No matter how you slice it, the Lights were fortunate to get the benefit of the doubt with the added time and took advantage.
  • He allowed three goals, but Lalo Delgado had a big match. He made six saves, including a massive one late on Golden Boot-leading Junior Flemmings. As I mentioned on Twitter, he has turned me from a doubter to a believer.
  • The penalty awarded to Phoenix was a bit soft. It appeared that Samuel Stanton may have stumbled himself as he tried to get around Jordan Murrell. It was unfortunate for the Lights as it came after Chester pulled one back and momentum was on the Lights’ side.
  • There were absolute times that Rising FC overpowered and paced the Lights, putting them on the back foot. But, Frank Yallop’s side didn’t shy away from the challenge and battled the league’s best to a draw.
  • Not to beat a dead horse, but Las Vegas is not getting the most out of Mobi Fehr as they play him at right-back. They need a true defender to start there to allow Mobi to pull the strings in the middle of the formation.

What’s Next?

Very quick turnaround for the Lights as they are set to host Orange County SC on Tuesday at Cashman Field. OC enters the match on a four-match winning streak as they topped Los Dos last night.

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.