Three Takeaways from #SACvSA
Sacramento's final match of the season with league leader San Antonio FC went the way of the Texas club. While Mark Briggs Men battled hard, it's a match they'll be eager to bounce back from.
Have to Take Advantage
After two straight matches of strong play in the attacking third, Saturday's match reminded the club of what they'll need to do to remain a force down the stretch - take advantage of their opportunities. Sacramento finished the match with more chances created, but not converting on them sealed the result as Sacramento was shut out for the first time in just over a month in league play
"When opportunities come, you have to take them," said Mark Briggs after the match. "They had a couple of opportunities and they scored one goal. When your opportunities come you have to take them [and] tonight we didn't take them."
A Late Push
After playing the first half mostly in defensive territory, the stat line flipped in the second to favor the Quails. Mark Briggs brought on a cavalry of offensive substitutes to flip the script, resulting in more frequent chances as the 90-minute mark approached. Douglas Martinez and Deshorn Brown each provided a more physical and threatening look for the club up top - with each helping to create opportunities that could have evened the score line. The surge provided a spark, and something to build off of going into their next contest.
Fending off First Half Pressure
Republic FC withstood pressure early as their opponents posted 11 first half shots. The club did well to fend off the threats - Danny Vitiello made a trio of strong saves to keep the club's deficit to one, and the club's defense restricted San Antonio to an expected goals rating of just 0.52. However, the start of the game set the tone and gave advantage to the hosts.
"I think we just started slow, kind of played right into their hands where they want to play," said Conor Donovan. "Now it's just about getting a reaction out of boys. Obviously there are four games left in the season and we've got a big one on Wednesday. So now it just about knowing what we did wrong in this game and fixing it and then getting three points at home."
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