Real Monarchs SLC Bests El Paso Locomotive FC 2-1 to Claim Western Conference Title
HERRIMAN, Utah - Real Monarchs SLC topped expansion side El Paso Locomotive FC 2-1 on Saturday afternoon, booking its ticket to the USL Championship Final on November 17. Saturday's match was the highest attended match in Zions Bank Stadium history as 4,521 fans packed the venue in Herriman to see the Monarchs claim the Western Conference crown.
DF Kalen Ryden tallied the equalizing goal early in the second half while DF Erik Holt headed the game-winner in the 120th minute of added time to secure the victory.
The two sides struggled to find the advantage through the first half, as both teams traded possession with neither finding strong opportunities towards goal. Real Monarchs found the first real opportunities towards goal through MFs Luke Mulholland and Jack Blake just before the half hour mark, but each shot sailed just wide of the frame. Locomotive FC would find the first goal however after a scrum in the box ended with Andrew Fox finding the far post to give El Paso the 1-0 lead at the break.
Real Monarchs came out flying in the second half, as Ryden found the equalizing goal from a volley in the 48th minute. MF Maikel Chang and FW Douglas MartÃnez each made runs shortly after that looked to be a quick second goal, but ended with El Paso defender James Kiffe seeing a second yellow to give the Monarchs a man advantage in the 52nd minute. Despite the advantage neither the Monarchs nor El Paso were able to find the go-ahead goal before the end of regulation. Real Monarchs absorbed pressure through the added overtime but ultimately earned the right to represent the West in the USL Championship Final in the final minute of overtime with a headed effort from Holt to end the game 2-1.
UP NEXT: Real Monarchs SLC heads to its first appearance in the USL Final as it travels to back-to-back USL Champions, Louisville City FC. The contest is set for Sunday, November 17th with a kickoff of 5:30 p.m. MT and will be broadcast nationally on ESPN2.
GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN
ELP: Andrew Fox (Omar Salgado), 46th minute: Just before the end of the first half, El Paso found the go ahead goal from the set piece. After being served into the middle of the box, the ball bounced around between Monarchs and Locomotive players. In the end, it was Fox that got to the ball with the last touch that ended into the far post.
SLC: Kalen Ryden, 48th minute: After the Monarchs earned a free kick opportunity shortly after the opening whistle of the second half, Ryden was the one to find the equalizer. Justin Portillo served in the kick that El Paso failed to properly clear, giving Ryden a chance at the volley that blew past Logan Ketterer and into the back of the net.
SLC: Erik Holt (Noah Powder), 120th minute: In the dying moment of the game, Real Monarchs earned a corner kick that Powder served in to the far post. Holt was quick to make the jump, a head above the rest and put in the game-winning goal to secure the Monarchs win.
KEY SAVES AND DEFENSIVE STOPS
ELP: Logan Ketterer, 74th minute: With the man-advantage, Real Monarchs SLC pressed the attack where the ball landed at the feet of Justin Portillo. Portillo took the opportunity to rifle a shot towards goal that looked to be a go-ahead, but Ketterer had the answer with the diving save to keep his side alive.
- Real Monarchs made one change between its win over Phoenix Rising FC to the Conference Final as DF James Moberg started in the XI while DF Noah Powder started on the bench.
- Real Monarchs SLC made its first appearance in the Western Conference Final, earning the win to punch its first ticket to the USL Championship Final. Real Monarchs will face Louisville City FC on Sunday, November 17 at Lynn Stadium in Louisville.
- Saturday's match was the highest attended game in Zions Bank Stadium history as 4,521 fans witnessed the 2019 USL Championship Western Conference Final.
Match: Real Monarchs SLC vs El Paso Locomotive FC
Date: November 9, 2019
Venue: Zions Bank Stadium
Weather: 61 Degrees and Clear
Scoring Summary 1 2 AET F
Real Monarchs SLC 0 1 1 2
El Paso Locomotive FC 1 0 0 1
ELP - Andrew Fox (Omar Salgado), 45'+1
SLC - Kalen Ryden, 48'
SLC - Erik Holt (Noah Powder), 120'
Real Monarchs SLC (3-4-1-2): David Ochoa; Erik Holt, James Moberg (Noah Powder, 78'), Kalen Ryden, Konrad Plewa, Luke Mulholland (Luis Arriaga, 110'), Tate Schmitt, Justin Portillo, Maikel Chang, Jack Blake, Douglas Martinez
Subs not used: Andrew Putna, Steve Jasso, Sam Brown, Kyle Coffee, Julian Vazquez
El Paso Locomotive FC (4-3-3): Logan Ketterer; Chiro N'toko, Andrew Fox, James Kiffe, Drew Beckie, Yuma (Alexy Bosetti, 117'), Nick Ross, Sebastian Velasquez, Omar Salgado, Aaron Gomez (Richie Ryan, 95'), Jerome Kiesewetter (Moses Makinde, 57')
Subs not used: Jermaine Fordah, Guillermo Diaz, Louis Herrera, Sebastian Contreras
Stats Summary: SLC/ELP
Shots: 18 / 14
Shots on Goal: 9 / 4
Saves: 3 / 7
Corner Kicks: 10 / 6
Fouls: 23 / 17
Offside: 0 / 0
SLC - Tate Schmitt (Caution) 22'
ELP - James Kiffe (Caution) 47'
ELP - James Kiffe (Second Caution; Ejection) 52'
ELP - Aaron Gomez (Caution) 71'
SLC - Justin Portillo (Caution) 89'
SLC - Luke Mulholland (Caution) 90'+4
SLC - Erik Holt (Caution) 116'
Referee: Rosendo Mendoza
Assistant Referees: Tom Felice, Diego Blas
4th Official: Elton Garcia
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United Soccer League Championship Stories from November 9, 2019
- LouCity Wins Eastern Conference Title-Winners - Louisville City FC
- Real Monarchs SLC Bests El Paso Locomotive FC 2-1 to Claim Western Conference Title - Real Monarchs SLC
- Louisville City FC, Real Monarchs SLC Advance to USL Championship Final - USL
- RECAP: Indy Eleven Ousted from Postseason in Eastern Conference Final - Indy Eleven
- El Paso Locomotive FC Close out Historic Inaugural Season in the USL Western Conference Final - El Paso Locomotive FC
- Game Day: LouCity vs. Indy Eleven - Louisville City FC
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