All posts by Shawn Jonas

Sacramento Republic FC’s Rodrigo Lopez Gets Hurt In 82nd Minute In 3-0 Win Versus Portland Timbers 2

April 19, 2015 12:01 AM PT

Sacramento Republic FC’s Rodrigo Lopez has been on fire as of late. He scored both goals in the previous game against the Vancouver White Caps FC 2. Including a goal that was shot from behind midfield. The video of the goal went viral world wide.


 Photos by Shawn Jonas

Lopez scored again in the 13th minute versus the Portland Timbers 2. He put Republic FC ahead 1-0. Lopez took the ball from midfield to just outside the box before his low strike deflected off a sliding Harrison Delbridge and into the upper right corner of the goal.



Photos By Shawn Jonas

He then collected an assist while lofting a free kick to Defender Mickey Daly  who headed it past Jake Gleeson for the 2-0 lead in the 37th minute.

The savvy veteran Lopez has been making a very tough game look easy as of late.

Sacramento went into half-time with a 2-0 lead.


Photo by Shawn Jonas

The real drama came in the 81st/82nd minute.  Rookie midfielder Zev Taublieb scored his first professional goal when he sent a rebound past Gleeson, giving Republic FC a 3-0 lead.

Before the goal Lopez collided with a Timbers 2 player on the west sideline around midfield. The ball had went elsewhere and Sacramento controlled. Lopez got up and limped over to the Timbers bench and laid on the pitch for a little while. He tried stretching and loosening his left leg.

Play had continued without him.  Braun had broke free about midfield and then a Timbers 2 defender broke up the play and sent it back to Republic FC’s side of the field.

Lopez was still on the ground and was slowly trying to get up and test the leg. He was in pain and trying to see how much weight he could put on the leg.

In the meanwhile Sacramento regained control and started moving the ball to midfield. Lopez seeing the action worked his way back into the field of play, but he had a noticeable limp. He received a pass and drove the ball towards the goal, not at full speed, he passed the ball to an open Republic FC player who took shot on goal and then Taublieb scored on the rebound.

After the goal Sacramento subsituted Gabe Gonzalez for Lopez.  Lopez never returned.  Republic FC was up 3-0 and there was only minutes remaining. No reason for him to come back in.

The trainer worked on Lopez trying to stretch out his hamstring or hip. After the trainer worked on him, Lopez got up and seemed to struggle when he put weight on the left leg.

I tried to get clarification post-game about the injury, but was told the ice was believed to be precautionary.

The injury seemed to be more than that.  Due to the score and the time of the game it was convenient timing.

Possibly, it’s nothing that won’t heal over the next 6 days. Right now, it’s pure speculation. What the injury is? I don’t know, but with Hamstrings, Quads, and Hip Flexors many times it take a few weeks of complete rest for those injuries to heal.

Post game Lopez had a big bag of ice on his upper thigh and hip area. He did greet numerous players and signed many autographs for fans,   all while slightly limping with the ice on.

If its really a problem we should hear something about missed practices as it gets closer to Sacramento’s next game.

The good news for Sacramento and Lopez, they don’t play again until Friday the 24th against the Orange County Blues FC .

UPDATE:  Rodrigo Lopez posted on a message on his Facebook. 

All is well. Contusion!

Sacramento Republic FC Shut Out Portland Timbers 2 3-0; USL’s New Western Conference Leader

April 18, 2015 10:37 PM PT

Sacramento Republic FC won for the third time in as many matches, shutting out Portland Timbers 2, 3-0, in front of a sold-out crowd of 11,242 at Bonney Field on Saturday night.

Tonights win puts the Republic FC into the lead in the USL’s Western Conference at (4-2).


DSC02736                                               Photo by Shawn Jonas

Republic FC started slow but soon regained their form and in the 13th minute put Republic FC ahead 1-0. Rodrigo Lopez took the ball from midfield to just outside the box before his low strike deflected off a sliding Harrison Delbridge and into the upper right corner.

Sacramento continued to apply pressure, with former Republic FC loan goalkeeper, Jake Gleeson the only thing keeping Republic FC from extending its lead, saving a strong attempt from midfielder Max Alvarez in the 16th minute.



DSC03042                                          Photos By Shawn Jonas

Defender Mickey Daly doubled the lead for Sacramento in the 37th minute, heading in a lofted set-piece from Lopez past a diving Gleeson. The goal put Republic FC up 2-0.


                                              Photo by Shawn Jonas

T2’s best chance for a goal came in the 41st minute, with successive strikes by forward Fatawu testing Republic FC goalkeeper Patrick McLain for the first time. But, McLain stood strong keeping Republic FC ahead 2-0 at halftime.

Republic FC continued to control possession in the attacking third and almost put the game out of reach in the 64th minute as Octavio Guzman’s volley from an Alvarez corner-kick sailed inches over the crossbar.


                                         Photo by Shawn Jonas

In the 82nd minute rookie midfielder Zev Taublieb scored his first professional goal when he sent a rebound past Gleeson, giving Republic FC a 3-0 lead.

“I don’t think it’s hit me yet,” Taublieb said on scoring his first goal. “It’s been an incredible experience, I really owe it to the coaches for giving me a shot.”

Republic FC will be back in action again when they take on Orange County Blues FC on Friday, April 24 at Bonney Field. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.

Sacramento Republic FC 3:0 Portland Timbers 2
USL Match
Bonney Field – Sacramento, CA
April 18, 2015 – Attendance: 11,242 (sellout)

Scoring Summary: SRFC – Rodrigo Lopez 13; SRFC – Mickey Daly (Rodrigo Lopez) 37; SRFC – Zev Taublieb 82

Misconduct Summary: SRFC – Ivan Mirković (caution) 44; Justin Braun (caution) 56; Max Alvarez (caution) 66.

Portland Timbers 2 – Jake Gleeson; Andy Thoma; Harrison Delbridge; Anthony Manning; Taylor Peay; Blair Gavin; Nick Besler (Tim Payne 45); Schillo Tshuma (Steven Evans 77); Fatawu; Rundell Winchester (Matt Rose 77); Kharlton Belmar.

Subs Not Used: Justin Luthy; Seth Casiple; Rennico Clarke.

Stats: Shots: 8, Shots on Goal: 3, Saves: 4, Fouls: 10, Corner Kicks: ,4 Offside: 5.

Sacramento Republic FC – Patrick McClain; James Kiffe; Mickey Daly; Nemanja Vuković; Emrah Klimenta; Ivan Mirković; Octavio Guzman (Cameron Iwasa 88); Max Alvarez (Zev Taublieb 67); Rodrigo Lopez (Gabe Gonzalez 83); Justin Braun; David Estrada.

Subs Not Used: Dominik Jakubek; Alfonso Motagalvan; Joaquin Rivas; Gabe Gonzalez; Agustin Cazarez

Stats: Shots: 13, Shots on Goal: 7, Saves: 3, Fouls: 8, Corner Kicks: 5, Offside: 2.

The San Jose SaberCats Remain Unbeaten Take Down The Jacksonville Sharks 68-48

April 17, 2015 8:13 PM PT

Courtesy Of The SaberCats Media Relations

Jacksonville, Florida – The San Jose SaberCats (4-0) remained undefeated after taking down the Jacksonville Sharks (0-4) 68-48, Friday at Veteran’s Memorial Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida.
AFL All-Time leading rusher, fullback Derrick Ross bulldozed his way into the end zone on the first drive to give the Sharks an early 7-0 lead. Ross, who was acquired for the Philadelphia Soul this off-season, continued to be focal point for the offense. He finished with 11 rushes for 35 yards and a season-high four touchdowns. Ross continues to be the go-to player within the five yard line of the red zone for Jacksonville. On the night, he also eclipsed a milestone with his 150th rushing touchdown for his AFL career.

Continuing his impact play, jack linebacker David Hyland snuffed out a pass play and picked off the Tommy Grady pass at the Jacksonville seven yard line, his second interception of the season. Hyland continues to excess at the jack linebacker spot for San Jose and led the team in tackles with 14. Reggie Gray was able to extend the San Jose lead to 14-7, after hauling in a five yard touchdown reception. As the SaberCats leading receiver this season, “Big Play” Reggie Gray finished with nine receptions for 80 yards and three touchdowns.

As the Arena Football League’s leading receiver, Anthony “Tiger” Jones demonstrated his abilities early an often. Jones finished with seven receptions for 100 yards, but was unable to add to his league-high 10 receiving touchdowns.

SaberCats quarterback Erik Meyer threw for a season –high eight touchdowns, completing 19-of-30 completions for 246 yards.

Odie Armstrong, an avid Madden video gamer, pressed the B-button on the Xbox (O on the PlayStation) and spun into the end zone for a four-yard touchdown run, to give San Jose a 21-7 lead in the second quarter. Armstrong added to his rushing touchdown total with five on the season.

With his return to the starting lineup, SaberCats’ receiver Adron Tennell, the 2013 AFL Wide Receiver of the Year, made an immediate impact. He finished with five receptions for 65 yards and four of those going for touchdowns.

In the Second quarter, Sharks’ receiver Joe Hills hauled in multiple receptions, matriculating the offense down to the goaline, with Ross able to do what he does best and rumble in for a one-yard touchdown run to cut the SaberCats lead to 21-14. Hills led the Sharks with 14 receptions for 155 yards and a touchdown.

After a great performance in his first game as a SaberCat last week, receiver D.J. Stephens continued to shine for San Jose. Stephens caught a 33-yard pass from Meyer and was brought down just a yard shy of the end zone. Unfortunately, defensive end Joe Skyes, a member of the SaberCats last season, jumped in on a botched snap and forced a fumble that was eventually recovered by Jacksonville. Following the fumble recovery, Jones sacrificed life and limb to haul in a 30-yard reception while flying over the boards to set up a Ross touchdown run.

With a Darius Reynolds reception bringing the SaberCats down to the four yard line, Meyer found Gray in the end zone on fourth down, as San Jose led 28-24 at halftime.

Following a Joe Hills touchdown reception by the Sharks, Gray was able to grab the kickoff and returned it 58-yards for a touchdown, the first on the season for San Jose, who responded immediately and pushed out to a 48-38 fourth quarter lead.

It did not take long for Jacksonville to answer, as receiver Jerod Harvery grabbed an 18-yard touchdown, his first touchdown reception of the season to make it a 48-45 San Jose lead.
With eight minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, Meyer found Stephens in the back of the end zone. In his second game with San Jose, Stephens finished with three receptions for 84 yards and a touchdown.

On the ensuing kickoff, SaberCats defensive end Donte Paige-Moss was able to recover the ball off of the uprights to provide the San Jose offense with the ball at the eight yard line. The recovery was culminated by a Gray touchdown reception to give the SaberCats a 62-45 with 3:46 remaining.

A late interception by defensive back Erik Crocker sealed the win for San Jose, who will be back at home in the SAP Center to host the Portland Thunder on Saturday April, 25th.

The ArenaBowl XVI, XVIII and XXI champion San Jose SaberCats finished their 19th season in the AFL with a Pacific Division Title after making their return in 2011. Fans and sponsors can go to or call 408-673-3400 to sign up to receive the latest news and updates about the SaberCats, as well as to purchase 2015 season tickets. Make sure to follow the SaberCats on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news on the team.

San Jose SaberCats VS. Jacksonville Sharks Preview

Apri 16, 2015 9:00 AM

Courtesy of The San Jose SaberCats Media Relations

San Jose, California – The San Jose SaberCats and Jacksonville Sharks are two teams separated by over 2,700 miles of road and while they will meet on Friday, they are both heading in opposite directions.


The SaberCats (3-0) have cruised to victory in their first three games of the 2015 season, winning by an average margin of 17.7 points per game. On the contrary, the Sharks (0-3) have yet to win a game this season, losing all three of their games this season by a combined 13 points, including the first two games by one point each.

After a slew of acquisitions to bolster its offensive attack this off-season, Jacksonville was an early pre-season favorite in the American Conference. Despite their record, the Sharks are a formidable opponent for any team and have a chance to prove it on Friday night. The Sharks made a splash in free agency with the acquisition of the 2012 AFL MVP, quarterback Tommy Grady. As the signal caller for the Pittsburgh Power last season, Grady set a franchise record with 4,717 passing yards and 115 touchdowns.

Through three games in 2015, Grady has thrown for 845 yards and is ranked second in the league with 19 passing touchdowns.
As expected, Grady’s favorite target this season has been Anthony “Tiger” Jones. After spending the past three seasons with the Philadelphia Soul and earning First Team All-Arena Honors in 2013, Jones is leading the AFL in receiving. Jones brought his league leading receiving touchdown total to 10 on the season, after hauling in five touchdowns against his old team last week. The duo of Grady and Jones will be the biggest test thus far for the SaberCats stout defense.

Derrick Ross, the all-time AFL rushing leader, has gotten off to a hot start as well. He is the only player to have eclipsed the 100 yard rushing mark (113) and is tied for second in the AFL with four rushing touchdowns. Like Jones, Ross spent the last three seasons with the Soul and was acquired in a trade with the Las Vegas Outlaws during training camp last month.

San Jose also boasts a former league MVP (2013) in quarterback Erik Meyer. Through three games, Meyer has completed an efficient 59.8-percent of his passes for 695 yards and 13 touchdowns. With the SaberCats lockdown defense providing ample field position, Meyer’s numbers do not tell the whole story.

Coming into the season, the SaberCats already possessed one of the league’s top receiver corps and added to it last week with the acquisition of D.J. Stephens. In his first game with San Jose against the Tampa Bay Storm, Stephens totaled six receptions for 80 yards and two touchdowns. Along with Reggie Gray, Darius Reynolds and Adron Tennell, the offensive attack for San Jose has yet to peak.

Despite averaging 52.0 points per game and ranking second in total offense, Jacksonville’s offensive attack has yet to overcome their deficiencies on the defensive side of the ball. However, Joe Sykes, former AFL Defensive Player of the Year, has been a bright spot for the Sharks’ defense. Sykes, a member of the SaberCats last season, has totaled 9.5 tackles with four tackles for a loss, two sacks and a forced fumble. While the San Jose offensive line has protected Meyer well this season, only surrendering four sacks, Sykes ability to rush the passer will be duly noted.

One cannot mention the SaberCats without reference to their defensive prowess. San Jose has four players with two or more sacks this season, including defensive end Luis Vasquez, who has a team-high 3.5 sacks on the season. In the secondary, the addition of Virgil Gray and Eric Crocker, as well as the return of David Hyland and Ken Fontenette, has resulted in much of the success on defense. A proven playmaker over the years, Gray has registered a team-high three interceptions and 10 pass breakups, while Fontenette leads the team with 17.5 total tackles. Enough cannot be said about the efforts of Hyland, who has recovered three fumbles and returned an interception for a touchdown in his first full season as the teams jack linebacker.

This will be the third meeting between the two franchises, with San Jose winning both matchups. The SaberCats defense leads the league, surrendering an average of 32.0 points per game. Look for a showdown of the Sharks prolific offense against the vaunted SaberCats defense in this week’s matchup. With their second game at home, Jacksonville will look to right the ship and get in the win column against a formidable foe. Meanwhile, San Jose has a chance to go on the road and prove that their early season success is no fluke.

The ArenaBowl XVI, XVIII and XXI champion San Jose SaberCats finished their 19th season in the AFL with a Pacific Division Title after making their return in 2011. Fans and sponsors can go to or call 408-673-3400 to sign up to receive the latest news and updates about the SaberCats, as well as to purchase 2015 season tickets. Make sure to follow the SaberCats on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news on the team.

Rodrigo Lopez Scores Both Goals In Sacramento Republic FC’s 2-0 Win Over Vancouver Whitecaps 2

April 15, 10:24 PM PT

Sacramento Republic FC, fueled by Rodrigo Lopez’s brace, secure 3 points with a home victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2.  The victory was in front of 10,906 faithful fans, another sold-out crowd at Bonney Field.

After a slow start to the first half for Republic FC, seeing minimal possession, the home team kicked into gear in the 16th minute. Forward David Estrada and midfielder Rodrigo Lopez had a give-and-go right outside the box. Estrada flipped the ball over the defense to Lopez who got a shot off, but it was saved by Whitecaps FC 2 keeper Spencer Richey.




Photos by Shawn Jonas

Republic FC would find the back of the net in the 32nd minute when Lopez stole the ball in the middle of the pitch and sent a pass to Estrada out wide. Estrada drew the defense toward him and calmly slid the ball back to Lopez in the middle who sent the shot right into the back of the net for the 1-0 lead.


Photo By Shawn Jonas

In the 41st minute Whitecaps FC 2 forward Victor Blasco streaked past the Republic FC defense and after a great through ball had a one-on-one opportunity against Republic FC goalkeeper Patrick McLain. Blasco got a clear shot at goal but McLain made a fantastic diving save with his right hand keeping Republic FC ahead 1-0 heading into halftime.

Republic FC keeper McLain was called into action again at the start of the second half. In the 58th minute, Whitecaps FC 2 forward Mackenzie Pridham sent a driven shot to McLain’s right that the keeper had to dive for and parry away for a corner, which he promptly snared in the air.


Photo By Shawn Jonas 

In the 71st minute Republic FC would strike again. After solid build up play from the defense, Lopez received the ball just behind the midfield line. Lopez put his eyes on the goal and saw that Richey was playing outside of the 18-yard box and without hesitation sent a right-footed strike toward goal. Richey could not get back to his line fast enough and the shot went perfectly into the back of the net putting Republic FC up 2-0.


“I said at halftime, the wind was blowing pretty hard and I told Justin [Braun], I’m going to see if the goalie’s cheating to see if I could catch him off his line,” Lopez said of his second half goal. “I looked up and I went for it and it went in. One of the best goals of my career, for sure.”


Photo By Shawn Jonas

“Overall I thought the first half, we didn’t start too well, but then we picked up the tempo,” said Republic FC head coach Preki. “In the last 25 minutes we were pretty good.”

Sacramento Republic FC moves to 3-2-0 in the USL season and remains unbeaten at home. They will be back in action on Saturday April 18 when they take on Portland Timbers FC 2 at Bonney Field.

Sacramento Republic FC 2:0 Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2
USL Match
Bonney Field – Sacramento, CA
April 15, 2015 – Attendance: 10,906

Scoring Summary: SRFC – Rodrigo Lopez (David Estrada) 32, Rodrigo Lopez 71.

Misconduct Summary: SRFC – James Kiffe (caution) 20, Mickey Daly (caution) 47; VAN – Tim Parker (caution) 19.

Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 – Spencer Richey; Jordan Haynes, Tim Parker, Craig Nitti, Chris Serban; Mitch Piraux (Tyler Roselund 66), Ben McKendry, Victor Blasco (Jovan Blagojevic 79), Sahil Sandhu; Mackenzie Pridham (Caleb Clarke 66), Billy Schuler (Brett Levis 66).

Subs Not Used: Marco Caducci, Jackson Farmer.

Stats: Shots: 8, Shots on Goal: 5 , Saves: 7 , Fouls: 12, Corner Kicks: 5, Offside: 4.

Sacramento Republic FC – Patrick McLain; Emrah Klimenta, Mickey Daly, Derek Foran (Nemanja Vuković 45), James Kiffe; Zev Taublieb (Max Alvarez 59), Ivan Mirković, Octavio Guzman, Rodrigo Lopez (Gabe Gonzalez 74); David Estrada (Cameron Iwasa 74), Justin Braun (Adnan Gabeljic 63).

Subs Not Used: Dominik Jakubek, Joaquin Rivas.

Stats: Shots: 14, Shots on Goal: 9, Saves: 5, Fouls: 16, Corner Kicks: 4, Offside: 2.

Match Recap: Courtesy of Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Oakland Raiders Sign Veteran Wide Reciever Michael Crabtree

April 13, 2015 8:57PM PT

Photo By Shawn Jonas

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders have signed free agent wide receiver  Michael Crabtree, the club announced Monday.

Crabtree joins the Raiders following six seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, during with he helped the team to an appearance in Super Bowl XLVII. Crabtree’s career totals include 79 games played with 77 starts, 347 receptions for 4,327 yards (12.5 avg.) and 26 touchdowns. Additionally, he has posted 40 catches for 516 yards and four touchdowns in eight postseason games.

Last season, Crabtree started all 16 games, producing 68 receptions for 698 yards and four touchdowns. In San Francisco’s Week 3 game at Arizona, Crabtree posted a career-high 10 receptions.

In 2012, the 6-foot-1, 214-pounder set career highs with 85 receptions, 1,105 receiving yards and nine touchdowns, helping the 49ers capture the NFC Championship. In Super Bowl XLVII, he posted five receptions for 109 yards and one touchdown.

The Dallas, Texas, native was originally drafted the 49ers in the first round (10th overall) of the 2009 NFL Draft out of Texas Tech. Crabtree was at two-time winner (2007-08) of the Fred Biletnikoff Award, given the nation’s top wide receiver. The two-time All-American finished his two-year career at Texas Tech with 231 receptions for 3,127 yards and 41 touchdowns.

Courtesy of the Oakland Raiders Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Dominates In Their USL Home-Opener Beat The LA Galaxy II 3-1

 April 11, 10:26 PM PT

The Sacramento Republic FC wins their USL regular season home-opener 3-1 over LA Galaxy II, behind a balanced scoring attack from Lopez, Klimenta, and Estrada.


Photo by Shawn Jonas

Rodrigo Lopez picked up right where he left off against LA Galaxy II. After scoring the 90th minute match winner in the previous USL contest with LA, Lopez started the scoring in the 22nd minute after a strong passing buildup led by defender Emrah Klimenta, After receiving the ball from Klimenta in the middle of the box, Lopez used a shot fake to evade a sliding defender leaving just LA Galaxy II keeper Clement Diop to beat. Diop dove to his right and Lopez sent his shot into the open net for an early one-goal lead. The goal was the second of the USL season for Lopez and his fifth goal in his last 3 matches against LA.




Photos by Shawn Jonas

Republic FC defender Emrah Klimenta would add to Republic FC’s lead in the 27th minute. Klimenta received a well-timed through ball from forward David Estrada up the right wing. Klimenta found himself in a one-on-one situation with Diop and calmly slotted the ball past the keeper into the far-post side netting for an early 2-0 lead.


Republic FC would steal another goal right before halftime. After Lopez’s corner was punched back out to him by Diop, he sent the ball back into the box with a right-footed in-swinging cross that found the head of David Estrada. The Republic FC forward sent the ball past Diop and into the back of the net to secure a 3-0 halftime lead for Republic FC.

LA Galaxy II would get a goal back in the 58th minute. Midfielder Raul Mendiola found space on the right wing behind the defense as he attacked Republic FC keeper Patrick McLain. Recognizing McLain had to come off his line to defend him, Mendiola slid the ball back across the face of goal to find second-half substitute Ariel Lassiter who sent a one-touch right-footed shot into the vacated net to make the score 3-1.

Despite some late chances on goal for Republic FC, including a near miss from Joaquin Rivas, the match would end in a 3-1 victory for the home side. The win was Republic FC’s second of the USL season, both of them coming against LA Galaxy II.


Photo by Shawn Jonas

“They are a good team”, said Republic FC Head Coach Preki after the victory. “We were comfortable in the first half and I warned our guys at halftime that we can’t let them back in. These have been good games and at the moment things are going our way.”

Sacramento Republic FC will be back in action Wednesday, April 15 when they take on Vancouver Whitecaps II at Bonney Field. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.


Photo by Shawn Jonas

Sacramento Republic FC 3:1 LA Galaxy II
USL Match
Bonney Field – Sacramento, CA
April 11, 2015 – Attendance: 10,906

Scoring Summary: SRFC – Rodrigo Lopez (Emrah Klimenta) 22, Emrah Klimenta (David Estrada) 27, David Estrada (Rodrigo Lopez) 45; LA – Ari Lassiter (Raul Mendiola) 58

Misconduct Summary: LA – Jack McBean (caution) 19, Jaime Villarreal (caution) 32; SRFC – Mickey Daly (caution) 77

LA Galaxy II – Clement Diop; Joe Franco (Lee Nishanian 89), Daniel Steres, David Romney, Jason Bli (Oscar Sorto 35); Alejandro Covarrubias (Kainoa Bailey 76), Jaime Villareal (Ryo Fuji 68), Elijah Martin, Raul Mendiola; Jack McBean, Bradford Jamieson IV (Ari Lassiter 57)

Subs Not Used: Nicholas Shackleford

Stats: Shots: 7, Shots on Goal: 3, Saves: 1, Fouls: 14, Corner Kicks: 3, Offside: 1.

Sacramento Republic FC – Patrick McLain; Emrah Klimenta, Mickey Daly, Derek Foran, James Kiffe (Nemenja Vuković 65); Joaquin Rivas, Ivan Mirković, Octavio Guzman (Zev Taublieb 65), Rodrigo Lopez; David Estrada (Cameron Iwasa 70), Justin Braun (Max Alvarez 76).

Subs Not Used: Dominik Jakubek, Adnan Gabeljic, Gabe Gonzalez

Stats: Shots: 9, Shots on Goal: 4, Saves: 2, Fouls: 13, Corner Kicks: 3, Offside: 2.

Match Recap Courtesy of Sacramento Republic Media Relations

San Jose SaberCats Early Lead Is Enough To Beat Tampa Bay Storm 36-27

April 10, 2015 7:34 PM PT

TAMPA BAY, FLORIDA — The San Jose Sabercats had a 26-7 lead at half-time. They were tested in the 4th quarter by a 20-point rally by the Tampa Bay Storm . The SaberCats held on for the 36-27 victory and improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2004.  It is the SaberCats second road victory in the three games played this season. They did so in front of 8,588 fans at AMALIE Arena on Friday night.

History was made when Storm wide receiver T.T. Toliver became only the fourth player in Arena Football League history to record 1,000 career receptions when he gathered in a nine-yard pass from Jason Boltus with 4:21 remaining in the second quarter. Toliver joins current Storm head coach Lawrence Samuels, as the one of only two players in franchise history to achieve the plateau. The 38-year-old Toliver now needs five catches to surpass former AFL receiver Chris Jackson and move into 15th place on the all-time receptions list in professional football history.

On the opening drive, SaberCats’ newly acquired wide receiver D.J. Stephens thought he had his first touchdown reception as a SaberCat but the play was nullified by a holding penalty on the offensive line. On the ensuing play Darius Reynolds made a one-handed catch in the back of the end zone on fourth down but he was unable to get his feet in-bounds and San Jose turned the ball over on downs.

On the ensuing drive, the SaberCats top-ranked defense proved its worth, as they forced a Storm fourth down from the seven yard line. On fourth down, defensive end Rodney Fritz stripped Storm quarterback Jason Boltus as Jason Stewart grabbed the ball in the air for an interception, the first on the season for the 2014 AFL Defensive Player of the Year. Stewart continued to be effective, as he forced a safety to end the first half as well.

Leading the defensive front, Fritz had a forced fumble and two sacks, tied for the game-high for San Jose. Defensive end Donte Paige-Moss also had two sacks and forced a fumble that was recovered by David Hyland, his second of the year.

Acquired early this week, Stephens got on the board in the 2nd quarter with a 16-yard touchdown reception as he hauled in the pass while flying over the boards to give San Jose a 14-0 lead. Stephens made a miraculous 31-yard touchdown reception in the fourth quarter, caressing the ball against his leg while falling down to pull in the catch. Stephens led the SaberCats with six receptions for 80 yards and two touchdowns.

Getting on the board, Tampa Bay cut the SaberCat lead to 14-7 with a 19-yard touchdown reception by Kendrick Ings. Ings also hauled in a nine-yard reception in the fourth quarter to cut the San Jose lead to 36-13. Ings finished with a game-high eight receptions for 100 yards and three touchdowns.

After a Reynolds 16-yard reception brought the SaberCats down to the two yard line, Meyer was able to take in the quarterback sneak for a touchdown to extend the San Jose lead to 21-7 in the second quarter. While Reggie Gray continues to lead San Jose in receiving, Reynolds proved why he was an All-Arena selection last season with the Iowa Barnstormers. Reynolds finished with six receptions for 64 yards.

San Jose quarterback Erik Meyer did just enough on offense to pull out the third straight victory for the SaberCats. Meyer finished with 179 yards passing two touchdowns on 17-of-32 completions.

Toliver finished with six receptions for 84 yards and hauled in a touchdown reception in the final minute of regulation.

San Jose held a 24-7 halftime lead after a 16-yard Nich Pertuit field goal. The seven points surrendered was the lowest total in a half for the SaberCats this season.

For the third consecutive game, defensive back Vigil Gray grabbed an interception; on this instance he took away a Storm touchdown in the end zone. Gray finished with five tackles, an interception and his impact has been vital for San Jose’s ferocious defensive attack.
Leading San Jose in tackles last season, defensive back Ken Fontenette was all over the field against Tampa Bay. Fontenette finished with a team-high eight tackles, flying around the field for the top-ranked SaberCats’ secondary.

On a 2nd and goal from the 17-yard line late in the third quarter, Boltus was rolled up on by his center and Stewart in an ugly looking play. Boltus was able to recover, finishing with 21-of-39 passes completed for 260 yards and four touchdowns.

With the win, the SaberCats become the first AFL team in 2015 to start 3-0 and will head to Jacksonville to take on the Sharks on April 17th.


Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Game: QB Erik Meyer, San Jose
Riddell Defensive Player of the Game: DE Rodney Fritz, San Jose
J. Lewis Small Playmaker of the Game: WR T.T. Toliver, Tampa Bay
Cutters Catch of the Game: WR T.T. Toliver, Tampa Bay (1,000th career reception)
AFL Highlight of the Game: T.T. Toliver, Tampa Bay (1,000th career reception)

Courtesy of San Jose SaberCats Media Relations

Raiders Announce Preseason Opponents

April 9, 2015 1:01 PM PT

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders’ preseason schedule will feature home games against the St. Louis Rams and Arizona Cardinals, and road contests at the Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks, the National Football League released Thursday.

Date(s)                                       Opponent             Time (PT)        TV
Aug. 13-17                     ST. LOUIS RAMS          TBA         KTVU/KICU
Aug. 20-24   at             Minnesota Vikings     TBA         KTVU/KICU
Sun., Aug. 30      ARIZONA CARDINALS     5:00 p.m.     NBC
Thurs., Sept. 3 at Seattle Seahawks              TBA          KTVU/KICU

The Raiders will open their preseason slate at Coliseum against the St. Louis Rams, marking the first time since 2007 that Oakland will play St. Louis in the preseason. Oakland will travel to Minnesota for the second consecutive season, playing at TCF Bank Stadium on the University of Minnesota’s campus in Week 2.

The Silver and Black’s third preseason game will be on national television, as they face the Arizona Cardinals on NBC’s Sunday Night Football. It will mark Oakland’s first preseason meeting with Arizona since 2012. The Raiders round out their preseason slate with a road contest at the defending NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks. The game will mark the 10th straight season that the Raiders have concluded their preseason against the Seahawks, with eight of those 10 games coming in Seattle.

Non-nationally televised preseason games in 2015 will again be produced in-house by the Emmy-Award-winning Silver and Black Productions, and will air locally on KTVU FOX Channel 2/KICU Action 36. provides additional program listings and carries exclusive year-round coverage of the organization.

Preseason times and specific dates will be announced at a later date.

Photo By Shawn Jonas

Oakland Raiders Announce Free Agent Signings

April 8, 2015 2:52 PM PT

Photo By Shawn Jonas

ALAMEDA, CALIFORNIA– The Oakland Raiders have re-signed the following 10 free agents, the club announced Tuesday.


Player                         Pos.    Ht.    Wt.     Exp.      College

Asante, Larry            S       6-0    210       4        Nebraska
Holmes, Andre      WR    6-4    210       4        Hillsdale
King, Marquette     P       6-0    190       4        Fort Valley State
Ross, Brandian         S       6-1    190       4        Youngstown State
Streater, Rod          WR    6-3    195       4        Temple


Player                            Pos.    Ht.    Wt.     Exp.     College

Autry, Denico            DE     6-5    275       2       Mississippi State
Leonhardt, Brian     TE      6-5    255       2       Bemidji State
McCants, Matt           T        6-6   310       3       Alabama-Birmingham
Olawale, Jamize  FB/RB  6-1   235       3       North Texas
Thorpe, Neiko          CB       6-1   200       3       Auburn

Streater: Enters his fourth season with the Raiders after making the team as an undrafted free agent in 2012…Missed the last 13 games of 2014 after being placed on the reserve/injured list with a foot injury…Posted 84 yards on nine receptions and one TD prior to the injury…Career totals include 35 games played with 19 starts, 108 receptions for 1,556 yards (14.4 avg.) and eight TDs…Led the team in receptions (60) and receiving yards (888) in 2013, setting career highs.

Asante: Enters second season with Oakland after playing in six games, starting two, in 2014 before suffering a season-ending injury…Career totals include 23 games played, two starts, 34 tackles (28 solo), one INT, one pass defensed and two forced fumbles…Tallied 23 tackles (18 solo) and one forced fumble last season…Appeared in five games with the Indianapolis Colts in 2013…Debuted with Tampa Bay in 2010, playing in 12 games for the Buccaneers over his first two NFL seasons…Originally drafted in the fifth round (160th overall) by the Cleveland Browns in 2010.

Autry: Returns for his second season after making the squad as an undrafted free agent in 2014…Spent six weeks on the practice squad before appearing in 10 games last season, totaling 13 tackles (eight solo)…Also notched two special teams tackles and one blocked punt…Blocked a punt against Seattle (11/2/14), resulting in the Raiders’ only special teams TD of the season.
Holmes: Enters third season with the Raiders after leading the team in receiving yards in 2014, posting career highs with 47 receptions for 693 yards (14.7 avg.) and four TDs…Career totals include 33 games played with 17 starts, 74 receptions for 1,135 yards (15.3 avg.) and five TDs…In 2013, appeared in 10 games, starting four, and caught 25 passes for 431 yards (17.2 avg.) with one TD…Played in seven games with the Dallas Cowboys as a rookie in 2012, catching two passes for 11 yards…Originally entered the league as an undrafted free agent with the Minnesota Vikings in 2011.

King: Begins his third season as Oakland’s punter after signing with the Silver and Black as an undrafted free agent in 2012…Has appeared in 32 games with 193 punts for 9,037 yards (46.8 avg.), placing 54 punts placed inside the opponents’ 20-yard line and only 14 touchbacks…Set franchise records in 2014 with 109 punts and 4,930 yards…In 2013, became third punter in franchise history to lead the NFL in punting with a 48.9 average…Missed the 2012 campaign due to a foot injury.

Leonhardt: Enters his second year with the Silver and Black after making the team as an undrafted free agent in 2013…After spending his entire rookie campaign on the practice squad, played in 12 games, starting three, for the Raiders last season…Recorded six receptions for 35 yards (5.8 avg.) with one TD…Season cut short due to a concussion, landing him on the reserve/injured list for the 2014 season finale…Also contributed significantly on special teams, notching four tackles and one forced fumble.

McCants: Has appeared in 24 games, starting three, for the Raiders since joining the team’s practice squad prior to the beginning of the 2013 season…Originally selected by the New York Giants in the sixth round (201st overall) in the 2012 NFL Draft…Contributed primarily on special teams and as an extra offensive lineman in 2014, seeing action in 11 games…Made 13 appearances and started three games at right tackle in 2013…Spent majority of his rookie season on the Giants’ practice squad after being waived at the end of training camp.

Olawale: Rejoins Oakland for his fourth season with the club, contributing on offense and special teams…Career totals include 35 games played with one start, five carries for six yards (1.2 avg.), and 12 receptions for 81 yards (6.8 avg.) and two touchdowns…Appeared in all 16 games for the Raiders in 2014, posting five receptions for 18 yards (3.6 avg.) and his first two career touchdowns…Also finished second on the team with seven special teams stops…Originally entered the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys in 2012.

Ross: Returns for his fourth season with the Raiders…Has played in 43 games with 24 starts for Oakland over the last three seasons…Career totals include 183 tackles (119 solo), two INTs, two sacks, 14 passes defensed and two forced fumbles…Appeared in one game with the Miami Dolphins in 2014 after being waived by Oakland following training camp…Re-joined the Raiders prior to Week 4…Finished 2014 with 68 tackles (47), two INTs, eight passes defensed and one forced fumble in 13 games…Originally joined the Raiders after being signed off the Green Bay Packers’ practice squad in September 2012.

Thorpe: Re-joins the Raiders for his second season with the team…Played a key role on the team’s special teams unit in 2014…Posted two tackles (one solo) and three passes defensed on defense and six special teams stops…Career totals include 23 games played, six tackles (five solo) and three passes defensed…Joined the Raiders as a reserve/future signing in 2014…Played for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2012 after signing with the team as an undrafted free agent.