Tag Archives: Rodrigo Lopez

Sacramento Republic FC Statement Regarding Rodrigo Lopez

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Earlier today, midfielder Rodrigo Lopez announced he will not be returning to Republic FC’s roster for the 2016 USL season. The club released the following statement regarding Lopez:

“I would like to thank RoRo for all that he has done to help us build our Indomitable Club, and we are grateful for all that he has done for us and the Sacramento community,” said President Warren Smith. “RoRo was chosen as our first player for a reason. We admired not just his talent on the pitch, but also his leadership, his strong work ethic and generosity of his time within the community. While we are saddened to lose RoRo, we are happy for him as he continues his growth as a player, and we look forward to watching him on the higher stage. RoRo will always be a part of the Sacramento Republic FC family and we wish him, Cristina and Roman all the best.”

Press Release Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC

Match Preview: Sacramento Republic FC Vs. LA Galaxy II

Sacramento Republic FC (13-8-7, 46 pts) take on LA Galaxy II (14-11-3, 45 pts) in a USL Western Conference Quarterfinal on Saturday, September 26. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. PDT at Bonney Field.

The match will be the fifth time that Republic FC and LA Galaxy II will meet in 2015. Republic FC won the first three matchups before Los Dos claimed their lone victory over Republic FC on July 11. Republic FC hold a 6-2-1 all-time record against LA Galaxy II.

Republic FC and Los Dos met in last year’s USL Playoffs on September 20, 2014, in a semifinal now dubbed by Republic FC fans as the Miracle at Bonney. LA Galaxy II forward Charlie Rugg scored a first half brace, giving Los Dos the 2-0 halftime lead. Republic FC midfielder Rodrigo Lopez then scored a second half, set piece hat trick converting two penalties and a stoppage time free kick to give Republic FC a 3-2 victory and advance them into the USL Championship match.

Republic FC enter the match undefeated in their last seven matches after playing to their second consecutive scoreless draw on Tuesday. Republic FC recorded back-to-back scoreless draws for the first time in franchise history.

Goalkeeper Dominik Jakubek recorded his third consecutive shutout against Orange County Blues FC on Tuesday. The shutout was the ninth this season by Republic FC, tying the mark that they set last season. Jakubek has allowed only one goal in his four USL starts this season, and has not allowed a goal in 294 consecutive minutes.

The back line has been a crucial part of the shutout streak for Republic FC. Defenders Emrah Klimenta, Mickey Daly and Nemanja Vuković and defensive midfielder Ivan Mirković lead the club in minutes and appearances. Each has played over 2,000 USL minutes this season and appeared in over 25 matches. Klimenta, Daly and Vuković have all appeared in over 50 USL matches as members of Republic FC over two seasons, the only other player to reach that mark is Lopez.

LA Galaxy II enter the match after defeating Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC 1-0 on Saturday, September 19. Forward Ariel Lassiter scored in the 10th minute and then was sent off right before halftime. The short-handed Galaxy II was able to hold on to the lead and clinch the fifth seed in the Western Conference Playoffs.

Due to the red card Lassiter will be suspended for the match, leaving Los Dos without their leading forward from the regular season. Lassiter leads the club in goals (11) and points (23) during the regular season.

Los Dos has plenty of firepower to make up for the loss of Lassiter. Forward Jack McBean and midfielders Andre Auras and Raul Mendiola have been important contributors all season. McBean is second on the club in goals (6) and assists (5), while Mendiola leads the club with eight assists and has added four goals. Auras has three goals and four assists on the season.

The winner of the match will travel to Southern California to take on Orange County Blues FC in the Western Conference Semifinals.

The match will be streamed live at SacRepublicFC.com/matchday via the USL YouTube channel. Updates of the match will be provided via Twitter @SacRepublicFC or using #SACvLA. Tickets to the match are still available at Ticketmaster.com.

Match Preview Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Ties with Orange County Blues 0-0

 Sacramento Republic FC battle Orange County Blues FC to a scoreless draw, their third consecutive shutout to end the season.

Both sides came out slow as they tried to find their footing. Republic FC had the first serious chance on goal in the 16th minute. Defender James Kiffe sent a cross from the left side of the pitch toward the near post. Forward Justin Braun made a run and was able to get his head on the ball, but his shot went just over the crossbar.

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The Blues best chance came in the 40th minute after winning a free kick in the middle of the pitch. Midfielder Milton Blanco sent the free kick toward the left side of the box. Defender Brenton Griffiths fought through his defender and headed a shot toward the near post, but Republic FC keeper Dominik Jakubek was there for the save and kept the score even at the half.

 

The second half was much like the first, with both sides coming out slowly. Republic FC’s best chance of the night came in the 68th minute when midfielder Rodrigo Lopez held the ball up in the middle of the field to allow the attack to catch up. Lopez then sent a brilliant through ball to substitute Gabe Gissie who was streaking down the right side. Gissie sent a cross toward the box, but Blues keeper Pepe Miranda was able to clear the ball away from danger.

Republic FC’s defense dominated most of the night, winning the ball and keeping the Blues from having many serious chances. In the 73rd minute, the Blues had their best chance of the second half when forward Chris Cortez won a free ball at the top of the box and sent a low, driven shot toward the goal, but Jakubek was there for a diving punch save.

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Republic FC would get one final chance at goal in the 78th minute when forward Mark Sherrod intercepted a pass and went one-on-one with Miranda. Sherrod took a powerful shot, but sent it right into the keeper’s chest and was called for a foul as he fought for the rebound, keeping the match scoreless.

 

 

 

“I think over the last two games we have had enough chances to at least win one game, but we haven’t done it,” said Republic FC Head Coach and Technical Director Paul Buckle following the match. “I am very proud of the way that we defended, we just couldn’t open them up and that has been the story in the last two games.”

Republic FC will host LA Galaxy II on Saturday, September 26, at Bonney Field in the USL Western Conference Quarterfinals. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. PDT. Tickets to the match go on sale to the general public on Wednesday, September 23, at 10 a.m. PDT on Ticketmaster.com.

Match Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Ties Arizona United SC 0-0

Jakubek posts his second consecutive clean sheet but Sacramento Republic FC cannot find a goal in a scoreless draw with Arizona United SC.

20150919_0109@SJonasNFLPhotos

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Republic FC threatened the Arizona goal early and often in the first half. The home side dominated both possession and scoring chances. Captain Justin Braun, forward Thomas Stewart and defender Mickey Daly all had chances inside the box, right in front of the goal but could not convert any of them. Arizona keeper Carl Woszczynski was forced to make a few difficult saves on the scoring chances for Republic FC, especially Stewart’s chance. The half would finish scoreless, despite Republic FC outshooting Arizona 14-1.

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It was more of the same for Republic FC in the second half. Stewart had the best chance of the half after he broke through the Arizona defense and received a through ball from Rodrigo Lopez in the 74th minute. Stewart took a touch towards goal and tried to wrap the ball around the oncoming Wosczyznski. The Arizona keeper came off his line and again made a difficult diving stop on Stewart’s shot.

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20150919_0694@SJonasNFLPhotos

Republic FC keeper Dominik Jakubek was not to be outdone by his counterpart. Jakubek made three crucial saves in the final half hour of the match, including a diving save of his own in the 78th minute on a driven shot from Arizona forward Aaron Dennis.

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Defender Nemanja Vuković and midfielder Gabe Gissie both had scoring chances in the waning moments of the match. Vuković was able to push up the field in the 87th minute and send a left-footed bullet of a shot to the upper left corner of the net. Woszczynski again came up with the diving save, one of his seven in the match, as he parried the shot out of danger. Gissie saw his shot roll across the face of goal untouched in the 89th minute when he attacked up the right flank.

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Unfortunately, Republic FC could not find the back of the net, despite outshooting Arizona 24-6.

“Of course I’m disappointed that we haven’t won the game”, said Republic FC Head Coach Paul Buckle after the draw. “When you create that many chances in a game, you expect to score at minimum one goal. We had some unbelievable chances and right to the 95th minute, it wouldn’t go in. Hopefully we get that good fortune next Tuesday and into the playoffs.”

With the draw, Republic FC clinch at least one home playoff match, with one more regular season match to be played. Republic FC will travel south to play Orange County Blues FC in a rescheduled match on Tuesday. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. PDT at Anteater Stadium on the campus of UC Irvine. The match will be streamed live on SacRepublicFC.com/matchday.

Match Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Defeats Portland Timbers II 3-0

A Justin Braun brace and Rodrigo Lopez’s tenth goal of the season propels Republic FC past Portland Timbers 2 and into third place in the USL Western Conference.

Sacramento Republic FC started strong dominating possession and testing the Portland Timbers 2 backline. Republic FC would strike first in the 13th minute. Forward Thomas Stewart sent a cross from the right side of the field. While Timbers 2 cleared the cross, it only only went to the top of the box where it fell softly to Rodrigo Lopez who sent a laser to the top right side of the goal putting Republic FC ahead 1-0.

September 12, 2015; Portland, OR, USA; Jake Gleeson (90) enters the field at Providence Park. Photo: David Blair - Portland Timbers FC
September 12, 2015; Portland, OR, USA; Jake Gleeson (90) enters the field at Providence Park. Photo: David Blair – Portland Timbers FC

Republic FC would strike again in the 33rd minute when midfielder Danny Barrera sent a cross into the box. Barrera’s cross found the head of forward Justin Braun, who was positioned well in the middle of the box. Braun flicked the header over the onrushing T2 keeper Jake Gleeson, putting Republic FC ahead 2-0.

Braun would strike again just two minutes later stealing, the ball in the middle of the pitch. Braun showed fancy footwork as he flicked the ball around the T2 defender and then sent the ball under the onrushing Gleeson on the ensuing one-on-one opportunity. The goal was Braun’s second of the match and fourth in the last two matches. Braun has now scored eight goal this season, doubling his output from last season and putting Republic FC ahead 3-0.

The best chance for T2 came in the 43rd minute after Ivan Mirković was cautioned after taking down Fatawu about 25 yards away. Fatawu stepped up and sent the ensuing free kick toward the left corner of the goal. Republic FC goalkeeper Dominik Jakubek was there for the save however, skiing high to knock the ball away from goal, keeping the match 3-0 going into the half.

September 12, 2015; Portland, OR, USA; Jeanderson (15) takes a shot on goal at Providence Park. Photo: David Blair - Portland Timbers FC
September 12, 2015; Portland, OR, USA; Jeanderson (15) takes a shot on goal at Providence Park. Photo: David Blair – Portland Timbers FC

T2 came out stronger in the second half, controlling more of the possession and getting the first strong look on goal in the 51st minute when Kharlton Belmar beat the defense down the right side of the box. Jakubek elected to stay on his line, making a kneeling save to keep Belmar’s shot out of the net and preserve his shutout.

Republic FC had their best chance of the half in the 55th minute when Braun beat the offside trap. Braun took a hard touch on the ball but was able to get to it and go one-on-one with Gleeson and sent a shot to the keeper’s right. Gleeson was up the task however keeping the score 3-0.

With the win, Republic FC moved into third place in the USL Western Conference and moved into a position to win the conference should they win their remaining two matches of the regular season. Republic FC will travel to Orange County, Calif. to take on Orange County Blues FC on Wednesday, September 16. Kickoff is 7:00 p.m.

Republic FC will play their final home match on Saturday, September 19 against Arizona United SC. The match is sold out, but a limited number of tickets remain for the match through the Greater Sacramento Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Tickets purchased through the website RelentlessRepublic650.org benefit LLS.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Defeats Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1

Sacramento Republic FC clinch a playoff spot with a road victory against Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 behind a brace from captain Justin Braun.

Republic FC started the game strong, possessing the ball and getting the majority of the positive opportunities in the first half. Despite their start, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 had the first strong opportunity on goal in the 25th minute. Midfielder Tyler Rosenlund sent a well-weighted ball from the right side of the box to Marco Bustos who settled the pass and sent a shot on goal. However, Republic FC goalkeeper Dominik Jakubek proved he was up to the task, making a sliding save on the shot.

06 September 2015:  Action during a game between Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 and Sacramento Republic FC in United Soccer League (USL) action at Thunderbird Stadium on the campus of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada.  ****(Photo by Bob Frid - Vancouver Whitecaps 2015 -  All Rights Reserved)
06 September 2015: Action during a game between Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 and Sacramento Republic FC in United Soccer League (USL) action at Thunderbird Stadium on the campus of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada. ****(Photo by Bob Frid – Vancouver Whitecaps 2015 – All Rights Reserved)

Republic FC would open the scoring shortly after in the 29th minute. Midfielder Rodrigo Lopez played a ball into the box to Tommy Thompson who turned with the ball and made the short pass to Justin Braun. Taking the ball from the middle to the right side of the six-yard box, Braun sent a hard right footed shot past Whitecaps FC 2 keeper Paolo Tornaghi. The goal put Republic FC ahead 1-0, a lead that would hold until after halftime.

Whitecaps FC came out the aggressor in the second half and found an equalizing goal in the 66th minute. Substitute midfielder Victor Blasco wove around the Republic FC defense in the midfield before sending a through ball to Bustos, who was streaking down the middle of the field. Bustos touched Blasco’s pass around an onrushing Jakubek and then sent a left footed strike into an open net, tying the score 1-1.

06 September 2015:  Action during a game between Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 and Sacramento Republic FC in United Soccer League (USL) action at Thunderbird Stadium on the campus of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada.  ****(Photo by Bob Frid - Vancouver Whitecaps 2015 -  All Rights Reserved)
06 September 2015: Action during a game between Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 and Sacramento Republic FC in United Soccer League (USL) action at Thunderbird Stadium on the campus of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada. ****(Photo by Bob Frid – Vancouver Whitecaps 2015 – All Rights Reserved)

Republic FC quickly answered with a second goal from their captain. In the 71st minute defender Emrah Klimenta won the ball on the right wing then rushed around the defense and down the endline to the right edge of the box. Klimenta then sent a low, driven cross toward the goal. Braun, standing nearpost, redirected the cross into the goal with his right foot, putting Republic FC ahead 2-1.

With the win, Republic FC clinched a playoff berth in the 2015 USL Playoffs and moved into fifth place in the Western Conference. Despite their fifth place standing, Republic FC sits just two points out of first place. Republic FC will look to better their playoff position when they are back in action again on Saturday, September 12 in Portland, Ore. against Portland Timbers 2. Kickoff is 7 p.m. PDT.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Ties With Real Monarchs SC 1-1

Justin Braun scores his fourth USL goal of the year, but Real Monarchs equalize late as Republic FC settles for 1-1 draw.

Republic FC enjoyed most of the possession early in the match. Forward Thomas Stewart had the first real chance of the match in the 34th minute. Stewart sent a header on goal from inside the six-yard box after a Rodrigo Lopez cross was deflected. Real Monarchs keeper Eduardo Fernandez was there to block it away however and kept the match scoreless going into the half.

Republic FC continued to dominate possession to begin the second half and in the 67th minute it would pay off. Midfielder Rodrigo Lopez attacked with the ball on the left flank and got into the box. Lopez then picked up his target, Justin Braun, and drilled a cross through the air that found the forward’s head. Braun calmly redirected the cross into a wide open net after Fernandez was forced to defend the threat of Lopez. The goal was Braun’s 4th in USL play in 2015 and the assist adds to Rodrigo Lopez’s all-time USL record.

Real Monarchs capitalized on a counterattack opportunity in the 86th minute. Second-half substitute Lucas Baldin sprinted up the left flank of the Republic FC defense and received a through ball from forward Emery Welshman. Baldin continued towards goal and was able to wrap a right-footed curler around oncoming Republic FC keeper Patrick McLain for the equalizing goal.

Republic FC forward Gabe Gissie, in his first USL start of the season, had a chance for a winner in stoppage time, but his left-footed side-volley went just high keeping the score 1-1.

“We’ve only got ourselves to blame,” Republic FC Head Coach and Technical Director Paul Buckle said after the match. “We haven’t been beaten, we have to take positives from it, but we are disappointed.”

Republic FC will be back in action again on Saturday, August 22, when they take on Tulsa Roughnecks FC at Bonney Field. Kickoff is 8:00 pm. A limited number of tickets are still available at Ticketmaster.com.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Title Changes For Sacramento Republic FC Football Personnel

Republic FC Head Coach Paul Buckle will assume technical director, Graham Smith to become director of football.

SACRAMENTO, Calif.  – Sacramento Republic FC has announced that Head Coach Paul Buckle will add the title and duties of club technical director. Graham Smith, the club’s current technical director will assume the new title of director of football. Assistant Coach Chris Malenab will take up a new role with the first team and academy as a video analyst. In addition to his role as video analyst, Malenab will lead the curriculum for Republic FC camps and clinics. The position changes will take place immediately.

“At this critical point of Republic FC’s maturation it is imperative that we give the title of head coach and technical director to Paul because of his vast experience not only as a head coach, but because of his extensive experience as a coaching educator,” said Republic FC President and Co-Founder Warren Smith. “This multifaceted responsibility will enable the Republic FC Academy staff to benefit in every way from his knowledge and coaching philosophy. His ability to form the bridge between the first team and youth is undoubted.”

Buckle was hired by the club following the departure of Preki, the club’s first head coach. He has since led Republic FC to a victory over Premier League side Sunderland AFC and won his first USL match 2-0 over Seattle Sounders FC 2. Buckle began his coaching career at the renowned Exeter City FC Academy before being appointed by Alex Inglethorpe (currently Liverpool FC academy director) as assistant manager for City’s first team. The second division English club’s academy is known for several high-profile signings, including, most recently, Matt Grimes to Swansea City for £1.75 million. In addition to his extensive managerial career in England, Buckle also led the Metropolitan Oval Academy in New York as technical director. Buckle’s extensive experience at all levels of the sport will apply in his new title as he will now oversee all first team roster changes, academy development and call-ups.

Smith was named the club’s first technical director in May 2013. The club’s on-field success is due in large part to Smith’s hiring of Republic FC coaching staff and signing of veteran MLS players Rodrigo Lopez and Justin Braun. Smith will continue many of his current responsibilities as director of football, including overseeing football personnel.

Malenab joined Republic FC as an assistant coach prior to the club’s first season. Malenab will transition to the video analyst position in which he will break down film of Republic FC matches and practices as well as prepare film studies of opponents. In addition to his video analyst role, Malenab will work to enhance Republic FC Camps and Clinics, presented by Raley’s, through the development of curriculum, implementation of club philosophies and creation of environments that allow local youth to have first team experiences.

Press Release Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Thomas Stewart Scores Both Goals To Give Sacramento Republic FC A 2-0 Win Over Seattle Sounders FC 2

Sacramento, California – Sacramento Republic FC capture a win in Buckle’s USL debut behind a brace from Thomas Stewart.

After an even first half hour in the match, with both teams seeing their fair share of possession, Seattle saw the first real chance of the match in the 30th minute. Midfielder Aaron Kovar got behind the Republic FC defense on a long through ball in the air and had a one-on-one encounter with Mickey Daly in the box. Daly was called for a foul after Kovar went to ground. Kovar then stepped up to the penalty spot and pushed his shot wide of the post keeping the match scoreless.

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Republic FC got on the score sheet shortly after in the 37th minute when midfielder Rodrigo Lopez sent a threatening through ball up the middle for forward Thomas Stewart. The target-man Stewart was able to run onto the ball and send a first-touch howler on goal. Seattle keeper Charlie Lyon dove to his right and was able to deflect the ball, but Stewart’s shot had too much pace on it as it hit the inside of the far post and into the back of the net for a 1-0 Republic FC lead.

With the assist on Stewart’s first-half goal, Rodrigo Lopez became the all-time USL assists leader. The goal was Stewart’s first in USL play in 2015 and his sixth in all competitions.

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The match came to halt in the 76th minute when Seattle defender Amadou Sanyang went in dangerously with a tackle on Republic FC midfielder Octavio Guzman. Sanyang was shown a straight red card and Guzman was subbed out with a right knee injury.

Republic FC would add a second goal in the 83rd minute when Stewart beat an offside trap and ran onto a long through ball from midfielder Danny Barrera. Stewart was by himself and only had the keeper to beat as he initially tried to chip the oncoming Lyon. The Seattle keeper blocked it right back to Stewart, who took two more touches towards the empty net and slotted home his second goal of the match, putting Republic FC ahead 2-0.

“We really contained them well and in open play they didn’t really expose us”, said Sacramento Republic FC Head Coach Paul Buckle after his first USL victory. “I was really pleased with that. We looked very dangerous.”

“It was very important to get the victory after a few weeks not playing in the league”, said Stewart. “It’s always nice to score goals. It’s my job as a striker and I’m a goal-scorer. It’s what I do best.”

The win was snaps a three-match winless streak for Republic FC and moves them within three points of first place LA Galaxy II. Republic FC keeper Patrick McLain recorded his sixth shutout of the season, the fourth at Bonney Field.

Republic FC will be back in action again on Saturday, August 8 when they take on Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC at Bonney Field. Kickoff is 8:00 p.m. and tickets are available at Ticketmaster.com

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC Falls to NewCastle United 1-0

Sacramento Republic FC fall 1-0 to English Premier League side Newcastle United on own-goal.

Sacramento Republic FC came out strong in the first half and had two scoring chances off of free kicks, the first coming in the 33rd minute. Midfielder Max Alvarez drew a foul just outside the box, Rodrigo Lopez stepped up and hooked a right-footed shot near-post. The shot was destined for the corner of the goal, but Newcastle keeper Tim Krul got a glove to it and pushed it out of play.

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Alvarez had a chance of his own in the 43rd minute. He stepped up from about 30 yards out and sent a left-footed shot low and to the left of Krul, who promptly parried the ball out of play for a corner kick.

Republic FC defenders Mickey Daly and Nemanja Vuković both had to come to the aid of keeper Patrick McLain in the first half as he was forced off his line numerous times. Daly and Vuković both made goal-saving headers and clearances, respectively, with Daly saving two scoring opportunities keeping the match scoreless at the half.

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Newcastle United would take the lead early in the second half. In the 47th minute Republic FC defender James Kiffe sent a Newcastle cross into his own net for own goal and a 1-0 lead for the Magpies.

Republic FC thought they had a quick answer in the 51st minute. Midfielder Danny Barrera took a shot from distance that was saved by Newcastle substitute keeper Freddie Woodman. Forward Thomas Stewart sent the rebound off the post and David Estrada sent that rebound into the goal, but was called offside, disallowing the goal and keeping the score 1-0.

Republic FC would gain a man advantage in the 65th minute when Newcastle defender Massadio Haïdara was sent off with a straight red for a dangerous tackle to the upper body of Barrera.

Republic FC had a scoring chance in the 85th minute when second-half substitute Cameron Iwasa sent a shot on goal, Newcastle keeper Woodman blocked the shot and was unable to catch the shot, but Republic FC could not reach the ball before Woodman collected the rebound.

“I am proud of everyone of our players, staff and fans”, said Republic FC Head Coach Paul Buckle after the match. “I thought tonight that our levels were higher than when we played Sunderland. It was a proper Premiership performance from them, but we still caused them a lot of problems.”

Republic FC will return to USL action on Saturday, August 1, when the take on Seattle Sounders FC 2 at Bonney Field. Kickoff is 8:00 p.m. Tickets for the match may be purchased at Ticketmaster.com.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations