The Orange Blocks: Home Opener Blues

RGVFC dropped their home opener vs. Fresno FC last weekend. 

Coming off a loss to the Tacoma Defiance, the RGVFC Toros were looking to get into the winner’s circle. However, Fresno FC had other ideas as they came off a draw in their opening game. The game had a rousing start as the Foxes scored within the first three minutes of the match to make it 1-0.  Arun Basuljevic scored off a Jackson feed. The Toros gained control of the possession but had no luck finding the target. The scoreline remained 1-0 into the break.

In the second half, it was more Toros possession and more shots off target as they pressed for an equalizer. Then, Basuljevic added a second goal of the night as it came off of a Juan Pablo Caffa pass to make it 2-0. The Toros had an opportunity as forward Michael Salazar earned a foul in the box by Ramon Del Campo. Maalique Foster missed on the spot-kick opportunity, which would have given the Toros life into the match.

Good and Bad of the Home Opener

Two games into the 2019 season for the Toros, there have been significant updates to the team. The first one is that the team looks much more dynamic with opportunities that are more creative. With that comes more possession of the ball and more opportunities to score. That is only good for the young season as there is more time to make leaps and bounds. Maalique Foster, what an acquisition to the team. An endless runner that will battle for position up front. Another plus of the match is the local talent on the pitch at H-E-B Park. Isidro “Chelin” Martinez made his home debut for the Toros after spending four years at UTRGV as a starter. Martinez is originally from Brownsville, Texas, a city about 70 miles from Edinburg.

Sadly, there are some bad parts to the team, but it has the right encouragement and identity. First off, 14 shots in the game vs. Fresno is not bad. However, none of them on target is the main concern.  While the season is in the early stages, the team will be missing two attacking pieces due to the international break. Foster and Salazar will be representing Belize and Jamaica respectively.

The last bad part of the match was the home fans booing the team off the pitch. It is understandable, but keep in mind, it is a privilege and not a right to have a professional sports team in the area.

What is next for Men in Orange?

The next game on the docket is the opening match of the newly named Copa Tejas, where the Toros will visit the border city of El Paso to take on Locomotive FC. I like the idea, but I feel like this another USL Championship rivalry in the making as this installment should be known as the “Battle of the Borders”


Top photo credit: Christian Inoferio


Rey Silva

Contributor to various websites in the RGV. Opinions are mine. Founder and owner of South Texas Border Sports.