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Lights Fight But Can't Snap Rising's Streak

September 12, 2019 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - Las Vegas Lights FC News Release

Tabort Etaka Preston led Las Vegas Lights FC with four shots taken, with two of them being on target
Tabort Etaka Preston led Las Vegas Lights FC with four shots taken, with two of them being on target
(Las Vegas Lights FC)

LAS VEGAS, NV - Lights FC battled for over ninety minutes with record-breaking Rising FC, but their efforts didn't pay off on the scoreboard as Phoenix won their nineteenth consecutive USL Championship match by defeating Las Vegas 1-0.

"I would like to congratulate Phoenix Rising on an amazing season. What they are doing is just so hard to do. Maintaining that kind of excellence throughout a season and stringing this many wins together,'' said Lights FC manager Eric Wynalda. "We had our opportunities though. There were a couple of times where I think we let ourselves down and the quality just wasn't there. At the end of the day, we've got to be better. "Both teams came strong out of the box, executing three shots each in the first twenty minutes of action, including strikes by Irvin Raul Parra and Edwin Rivas that went over the crossbar. The only shot on target of the half was credited to Panzani Sousa in the 33rd minute, but both teams combined for a total of 15 shots in the first half.

Nine minutes after kicking off the second half, Thomas Olsen had a crucial save from a low shot taken by Junior Flemmings, who was a half-time substitute for the visitors.

The best opportunity of the night for Las Vegas arrived in the 60th minute of play. A high pass by Bryan De La Fuente was challenged by Panzani Sousa, with the ball finding Tabort Etaka Preston, but his header inside the six-yard box went straight into the hands of goalkeeper Carl Woszczynski. This was the sixth consecutive match that Lights FC leading scorer Irvin Raul Parra has been denied of a goal by the opposing defense.

Staying error-free was the strategy for Lights FC and to not chase the game, but a bad clearance from Javan Torre in the 62nd minute left the ball in front of Adam Jahn, who took a shot completely out of reach of Olsen to open the score for Rising FC.

"You can't miss-clear the ball right into one of the best forwards in the league,'' stated Wynalda. "These are things that young players, young professionals need to learn as they go. No pride, put that thing in the 18th row. You don't try to make a play in your own box, especially with sharks lurking like that. Congrats to Jahn on another goal, but we really gave this one to him."

Las Vegas did a pair of substitutions to try and push forward and search to level the match, bringing in Victor Rojas and Jose Villarreal for Edwin Rivas and Bryan De La Fuente, respectively.

Phoenix settled themselves in counter-attack mode with a solid defensive line and stoppers in their midfield that halted all attempts by Lights FC. The final opportunity came off of a free-kick right outside the box in added time, with Tabort Etaka Preston's shot being denied by goalkeeper Carl Woszczynski, who was able to complete a clean sheet in his first game since March 30th.

"This one is a tough one to swallow for sure," said Lights FC goalkeeper Thomas Olsen. "Anytime you lose at home, it sucks. We put everything we had against the best team in the league, one chance and the guy tucked it. We're struggling right now but, on to the next one, that's all we can do." Tabort Etaka Preston led Lights FC with four shots taken, with two of them being on target. This was the first time in the 2019 season that Lights FC lost consecutive matches and were shutout in back to back games at Cashman Field.

Las Vegas closes their three-game homestand on Saturday, September 14 by facing the Fresno FC Foxes, who are currently second place in USL Championship's Western Conference. Lights FC will celebrate "Hispanic Heritage Night".

Tickets for all remaining Lights FC home matches are available at LightsFC.com/Tix or by calling 702-728-GOAL. The best ticket prices in town for Lights FC games can be found at every La Bonita Supermarket in the Valley.

Fans may also purchase the new La Bonita Family 4-Pack for only $44, available for all remaining Lights FC home games this season. It includes 4 midfield reserve tickets, one Lights FC youth jersey, and a La Bonita Gift Card (total value of over $150). The combos are available at LightsFC.com/Family and at all La Bonita locations.





Images from this story

Las Vegas Lights FC leading scorer Irvin Raul Parra
Las Vegas Lights FC leading scorer Irvin Raul Parra

Tabort Etaka Preston led Las Vegas Lights FC with four shots taken, with two of them being on target
Tabort Etaka Preston led Las Vegas Lights FC with four shots taken, with two of them being on target

 

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