(FOX40.COM) — Sacramento Republic FC has been eliminated from the USL Playoffs following a crushing 2-1 loss to Phoenix Rising on Saturday night.
Republic FC scored a goal in the first half to take a 1-0 lead, but the club could not put the match away as Phoenix continued to fight back.
The Arizona-based club tied the match up in the second half after a scrum for the ball bounced Phoenix’s way. Rising FC would put the match away in stoppage time on an absolute rocket from former Sacramento Republic FC forward Emil Cuello.
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Phoenix has put together an impressive postseason, which has been propelled with with road wins over San Diego Loyal SC and Orange County SC. They now add Sacramento to that list.
Sacramento Republic came into the matchup as the number-one seeded team in the USL Playoffs after finishing atop the USL Western Conference. Phoenix Rising finished the regular season as the sixth seed in the same conference.
Match updates can be found below.
The match has concluded. Phoenix Rising wins 2-1 and will advance to the USL championship.
90 + 4
A yellow card has been issued to Phoenix Rising FC midfielder Carlos Harvey.
90 + 3
Phoenix Rising scores a goal. Forward Emil Cuello has scored a goal from at least 10 feet away from the penalty box. Cuello strikes an absolute rocket into the back of the net. Phoenix Rising leads 2-1.
Five minutes of stoppage time has been added to the match.
A yellow card has been given to Phoenix Rising defenseman John Stenberg.
Corner kick for Republic FC, which is their second of the match. Rodrigo Lopez takes the kick.
Phoenix Rising scores a goal. Midfielder Carlos Harvey evens up the score 1-1. A scrum for the ball in Republic FC’s penalty box went Phoenix’s way as Harvey managed to get solid contact on the ball and get it past the outstretched arms of Danny Vitiello.
Final substitution for Phoenix Rising. Forward Erickson Gallardo checks into the game for forward Dariusz Formella.
Final round of substitutions for Sacramento Republic. Midfielder Matt LaGrassa and forward Cristian Parano have come into the game for midfielder Arnold Lopez and forward Keko Gontán, respectively.
Another round of substitutions for Phoenix Rising. Midfielder Emil Cuello and forward Manuel Arteaga have checked into the game for midfielders Panos Armenakas and Eddie Munjoma, respectively.
A yellow card has been given to Republic FC forward Keko Gontán. Russell Cicerone and Damia Viader have checked out of the game. Taking their place is forward Luther Archimède and Lee Desmond, respectively.
Phoenix Rising makes a substitution. Henry Uzochukwo and Renzo Zambrano have checked into the game for Darnell King and Jose Hernandez, respectively.
Republic FC’s first corner kick of the night comes from defenseman Damia Viader.
Midfielder Rodrigo Lopez has subbed into the game for midfielder Luis Felipe.
An injury to Republic FC midfielder Luis Felipe has caused a temporary stoppage. He was able to stand on his own and has decided to stay in the game. Midfielder Rodrigo Lopez has begun to warm up on the sidelines.
Although Republic FC holds on to a 1-0 lead, they are losing the possession battle 65-35. However, the Indomitable Club has taken four shots compared to Phoenix’s two, with two of the four shots being on goal. Phoenix has been more accurate with their passes (85% accuracy to Republic FC’s 74%) and have committed less fouls
A yellow card has been given to Phoenix Rising captain and midfielder Darnell King. Sacramento Republic will take a free kick attempt from just outside the penalty box.
Phoenix’s first threat of the night is thwarted by Danny Vitiello. A shot by midfielder Panos Armenakas is immediately scooped up by Republic FC’s star goalie.
GOAL. Russell Cicerone puts Republic FC on top with a beautiful goal off of his left foot. Cicerone navigated two Phoenix defenders before striking a stellar shot right by the goalie. Sacramento Republic FC 1, Phoenix Rising 0. The goal was Republic FC’s first shot of the night.
Second corner kick of the first half for Phoenix Rising. Both teams have not had a shot on goal up to this point.
Republic FC has been dominated in the possession battle (72-28), but a yellow card administered to Phoenix defenseman Mohamed Traore could begin to swing the momentum. Traore has been booed by the home crowd every time he touches the ball.
Similar to the previous match against San Antonio FC, offense has been hard to come by in the early going. Republic FC have come out aggressive on the offensive end.