Sacramento Republic FC Fall 1-0 To Swope Park Rangers In The Western Conference Semifinals

Swope Park Rangers came out dominating possession in the first five minutes, but it was the visiting Sacramento Republic FC that would earn the first scoring chance in the match after Jeremy Hall was clipped down right outside the box in the 6th minute, Emrah Klimenta and Chris Christian stood over the ball a yard outside the box. It was Klimenta who tried sending a right-footed shot up and over the wall, but could not clear the defenders as the ball was cleared away.

 The Rangers had two chances of their own in the 18th minute after Luis Espino blocked away Colton Storm’s cross for a corner kick for the home side. Lebo Moloto’s cross was dangerous in the middle of the box as James Musa tried to get a head to it but the Republic defense was able to narrowly clear it out for another corner kick. The second time around, Rangers defender Amer Didic went airborne and sent a powerful header back across goal but it hit the corner of the post before being cleared away for good.

 Republic FC’s best chances came in the 29th minute after a sloppy turnover from the Rangers defense. Forward Sammy Ochoa pounced on a lazy pass back to keeper Adrian Zendejas but the ball got caught under his feet and he couldn’t get a shot off before the defense recovered and cleared the ball away for a corner. James Kiffe’s ensuing far post corner sailed all the way through as Luis Espino and Christian both whiffed on simultaneous shots keeping the match scoreless into the half.

 The Rangers found the breakthrough goal just after halftime in the 46th minute. After a long, lopping ball led Rangers forward Tyler Pasher on towards goal, Pasher poked a shot that Republic FC keeper Evan Newton was able to parry. The Rangers star forward Kharlton Belmar pounced on the rebound chance and wasted no time in putting the go-ahead goal in the back of the net.

 Republic FC had their best chance in the 71st minute. Kiffe had the ball on the left side with space before sending a cross into the middle, but it was deflected.  The deflection went back to Villyan Bijev who hit the ball on the volley, but his shot went just wide left of the post keeping the match 1-0.

 Despite a flurry of chances for Republic FC in the last 20 minutes, they were unable to find an equalizer and Swope Park would win 1-0.  The loss ends the season for Republic FC.

Match Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Oakland Raiders Sign LB NaVorro Bowman

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders have signed free agent LB NaVorro Bowman, the club announced Monday.

Bowman, who has been named to four Associated Press All-Pro First Teams (2011-13, 2015) and three Pro Bowls (2012-13, 2015), has spent the past seven-plus seasons as a member of the San Francisco 49ers after being drafted by the club in the third round (91st overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft.

With San Francisco from 2010-17, the eighth-year pro appeared in 89 games with 74 starts, totaling 808 tackles (487 solo), 12.5 sacks, seven forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries, four interceptions and 28 passes defensed. Additionally, Bowman has played in eight postseason games, recording 97 tackles (49), 2.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and three passes defensed.

In 2017, the 6-foot, 242-pounder started five games for the 49ers and totaled 38 tackles (22) and one pass defensed. Last season, Bowman played in four games and totaled 40 tackles (20), one sack, one interception, two passes defensed and one forced fumble before being placed on the Reserve/Injured List.

A native of Forestville, Md., Bowman played in 33 games with 21 starts and recorded 215 tackles, eight sacks, three interceptions, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries during his three-year career at Penn State. He earned second-team All-American honors from multiple media outlets as a junior after registering 93 tackles, three sacks, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries.

Press Release Courtesy of the Oakland Raiders Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Ties Reno 1868 FC 2-2

Sammy Ochoa’s brace helps earn Sacramento Republic FC a 2-2 draw with Reno 1868 FC and a point in their final USL regular season match. 

 The match started well for Sacramento Republic FC who came out strong and on the front foot. In just the 16th minute Republic FC would break through the Reno 1868 FC defense for the first goal of the match.  Defender James Kiffe brought the ball down the left side of the field near the edge of the box before sending in a cross to the middle of the box.  Forward Sammy Ochoa ran into the middle before leaping over two defenders and heading the ball down and past the keeper Matt Bersano, putting Republic FC ahead 1-0 early.

 Reno 1868 FC would find their equalizer near the halftime whistle in the 41st minute.  Midfielder Seth Casiple played the ball to Chris Wehan in the middle near the top of the box.  Wehan turned and played a one-two with forward Brent Richards who put the ball right back to the foot of Wehan for him to tap the ball past Evan Newton to level the score 1-1 going into the half.

 Reno started the second half quickly, taking the lead in the 51st minute.  A long ball, lofted ball into the middle connected with Richards who had beat Republic FC’s offside trap.  The forward went one-on-one with Newton, trying to slide a low shot past the onrushing keeper.  Newton was able to deflect Richard’s shot on his slide, but Antoine Hoppenot was following the play perfectly and poked the rebound past Newton and into the back of the net to put Reno ahead 2-1 early in the second half.

 Republic FC would respond to the goal, however, finding an equalizer of their own in the 67th minute.  A ball down the right side sprung substitute forward Wilson Kneeshaw free.  Kneeshaw carried the ball to almost the endline before sending a grounded cross in front of goal that was just out of the grasp of Bersano and found a sliding Ochoa, who redirected the ball on a slide to earn a brace and even the score at 2-2.

 Despite numerous chances for both sides, including a few attacks from Kneeshaw and a corner attempt by Reno that was batted around multiple times in the box, the match ended in a 2-2 draw. 

 Republic FC will await the result of the Oklahoma City Energy FC versus Seattle Sounders FC 2 match on Sunday, Oct. 15 to determine where they will play their USL Cup Western Conference Quarterfinal playoff match.  With an Energy FC win, tie or loss by one goal when scoring two or more goals, Republic FC will face Real Monarchs SLC.  If Energy FC lose by more then one goal, or lose by one goal, but fail to score two goals, Republic FC will face San Antonio FC in the first round.

Match Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Oakland Raiders Sign LB Shilique Calhoun To Active Roster

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders have signed LB Shilique Calhoun to the active roster, the club announced Saturday.

Calhoun was originally selected by the Raiders in the third round (75th overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft. As a rookie, he totaled five tackles, 0.5 sacks and one pass defensed in 10 games played before suffering a knee injury and being placed on the Reserve/Injured List on Dec. 23.

The 6-foot-4, 250-pounder played in 54 games with 41 starts over four seasons at Michigan State, finishing with 131 career tackles. He also tallied 27 sacks, ranking second on the school’s all-time list.

In a corresponding move, the Raiders have placed CB Antonio Hamilton on the Reserve/Injured List.

Press Release Courtesy of the Oakland Raiders Media Relations

Oakland Raiders Sign CB Demetrius McCray

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders have signed free agent CB Demetrius McCray to the active roster, the club announced Tuesday.

McCray spent the 2017 training camp with the Seattle Seahawks after three years with the Jacksonville Jaguars from 2013-15. He has played in 46 games with 16 starts, totaling 73 tackles (60 solo) with six passes defensed and 12 stops on special teams.

Originally drafted by Jacksonville in the seventh round (210th overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft, the 6-foot-2, 200-pounder appeared in 14 games and totaled 21 tackles (17) with one pass defensed in 2015 with the Jaguars.

A native of Covington, Ga., McCray played in 48 games and recorded 123 tackles with 10 interceptions during his four-year career at Appalachian State. He was a two-time first-team All-Southern Conference selection and a Buck Buchanan Award finalist his senior year.

Additionally, the Raiders have signed LB Deontae Skinner to the practice squad and terminated the practice squad contract of LB Boseko Lokombo. Skinner has spent time with the New England Patriots, Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants, appearing in 11 career games.

Press Release Courtesy of the Oakland Raiders Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Falls to Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC 1-0

Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC defeat Sacramento Republic FC 1-0 behind a 36th minute goal from Kevaughn Frater and a stout defensive performance.

 The match began with both teams feeling each other out, but Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC, who needed a win or tie to keep their playoff hopes alive, pushed to find an early goal.  Despite the early pressure by the Switchbacks, it was Republic FC who would see the best early chance in the 27th minute.  Midfielder Villyan Bijev attacked through the middle of the field, reaching the top of the box before laying the ball wide to the left where Wilson Kneeshaw was making a run.  Kneeshaw attempted a right-footed shot, but a diving Switchbacks defender was there just in the nick of time to knock the ball out for a corner.

 The Switchbacks pressure would break through in the 36th minute on a play that started down the left side.  Defender Josh Suggs drove the ball down the side before cutting the ball back and sending a cross toward the back post.  Midfielder Kevaughn Frater chested the ball down and took a quick touch before firing a low shot past the defense and into the back post to put the Switchbacks ahead 1-0 going into the half.

 Looking to increase their lead, the Switchbacks would continue the attack early in the second half.  In the 53rd minute they had their best chance on a corner by Masta Kacher.  The midfielder’s looping pass went into the middle of the box where it was popped straight up in the air.  Frater tried to knock the ball toward the net, but it was punched out by Newton instead, but only as far as Shawn Chin who chested the ball down before hitting a long shot from around 30-yards out.  The ball started going toward the upper right corner but bent high and wide right, keeping the score 1-0.

 The Switchbacks almost doubled their lead again in the 76th minute.  The ball went long where both Akwafei Ajeakwa and Frater had beat the defense.  Frater brought the long ball down in a one-on-one with Newton and attempted to chip the Republic FC keeper, but Newton was quick to leap in the air and snag the ball to keep Republic FC in the match.

 Republic FC had their best chance of the half a minute into stoppage time. Kiffe’s corner went to the far post where Jeremy Hall jumped high to head the ball back into the middle.  Villyan Bijev made a run to that spot and was able to snap a header toward the goal, but Dan Jackson was quick to dive and make the save.

 Republic FC will finish their three-match road trip when they travel to face Reno 1868 FC on Saturday, Oct. 14.  With a win or a tie in that match Republic FC will clinch their fourth straight playoff appearance.  Republic FC would also clinch a playoff spot with a loss or a draw tonight by Orange County SC.  Kickoff for the match against Reno 1868 FC is 7:30 p.m. at Greater Nevada Field.  The match will be streamed live at

Sacramento Republic FC Defender Emrah Klimenta And Forward Trevin Caesar Earn National Team Call-ups For World Cup Qualifying Matches

Klimenta earns his third call-up this season while Caesar earns his second.

 SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Sacramento Republic FC defender Emrah Klimenta has been called up to the Montenegro National Team, while forward Trevin Caesar has been called up to the Trinidad and Tobago National Team.  Both players joined their national teams on Sunday and will remain with them through Oct. 10.  Both will also miss Republic FC’s matches against Orange County SC on Oct. 4 and Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC on Oct. 7.

 Klimenta and Caesar join midfielder Jeremy Hall as Republic FC players to receive international call-ups during their tenure with the club.  In addition, current forward Lamin Suma (Sierra Leone) and former Republic FC players Jake Gleeson (New Zealand), Kip Colvey (New Zealand), Justin Braun (USA), Carlton Cole (England), Kaleemullah (Pakistan) and Alvas Powell (Jamaica) have all represented their respective national teams, although not during their time with the club.

 This is the fourth national team call up for Klimenta. The defender previously joined the Montenegro National Team from May 20 – 29, 2016 for a friendly match against Turkey, from May 24 – Jun. 10 for a World Cup Qualifying Match against Armenia and from Aug. 27 – Sept. 5 for World Cup Qualifying Matches against Kazakhstan and Romania.

 Klimenta and the Montenegro National Team entered camp on Oct. 1 and will play in World Cup Qualifying Matches against Denmark on Oct. 5 and Poland on Oct. 8.  Klimenta will rejoin Republic FC on Oct. 10.

 Caesar will join Trinidad and Tobago National Team for the first time since joining Republic FC.  The forward was previously called up in late August, but due to Hurricane Harvey in Houston, was unable to get a flight to join the team. Caesar will join the national team for their World Cup Qualifying Matches against Mexico on Oct. 6 and the United States on Oct. 10.  Caesar will rejoin Republic FC on Oct. 11.

 For a full schedule and roster please visit

Press Release Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations