Collin Fernandez races by Juan Pablo Guzman in Saturday's Black Gold Derby matchup. (Lori Scholl)
Tulsa Roughnecks FC took round one of the 2017 Black Gold Derby with a 2-1 win in Oklahoma City Saturday night. After falling behind, the Roughnecks got second-half goals from captain Juan Pablo Caffa and Joey Calistri to take the victory over their state rivals, the Oklahoma City Energy.
The win improved TRFC’s record to 7-8-0 and moved it into a playoff spot in the USL’s Western Conference standings with 21 points. The Energy remain on 18 points with a 5-8-3 record through 16 games. The Roughnecks have games in hand on the three teams immediately in front of them in the standings.
Saturday’s game was the first of three this season in the Black Gold Derby, and it began in a downpour that struck just before kickoff. It was the Roughnecks who seemed to enjoy the elements the most as they controlled play through much of the first half, but they could not beat Energy goalkeeper Cody Laurendi.
The first goal of the match came against the run of play when the OKC capitalized on a miscue from the Roughnecks defense. A back header near midfield from Jacori Hayes did not make it to the penalty area. TRFC goalkeeper Fabian Cerda came out of box and cleared straight to the Energy’s Daniel Gonzalez who easily placed a shot into the empty net.
TRFC nearly leveled the score in a flurry just minutes before halftime. First, Laurendi saved a header just in front of goal from Ian Svantesson. On the following corner, Svantesson rattled the crossbar with a right-footed volley.
It took the Roughnecks only five minutes after the restart to get the equalizer. It was set up when defender Jorge Corrales got free down the left wing. His cross into the box deflected off the arm of a defender before caroming off the crossbar, and the referee quickly pointed to the spot for the penalty kick. Caffa calmly chipped the PK into the net as Laurendi dove to the opposite corner. The strike made the Tulsa captain a perfect 3-3 on PKs this season.
The match winner for the Roughnecks came in the 66th minute, and it started from a throw in. The throw came to Hayes who fed Calistri. The Chicago Fire loanee beat a defender and, from the left corner of penalty area, he rolled a shot perfectly into the far corner of the net for his fifth goal of the season.
After the goal, the match changed. TRFC had controlled possession through most of the night, but the Energy began to push forward in search of a tying goal. It would not come.
TRFC's Ian Svantesson rattled the crossbar just before halftime of Saturday's 2-1 win in OKC. (Lori Scholl)
The best chance for a second goal from OKC came in the 74th minute when a hard, right-footed shot by Luis Martinez struck the crossbar. The Roughnecks defense cleared the rebound, keeping the one-goal lead intact.
It was the second away win of the season for the Roughnecks who improved their record to 2-5 away from ONEOK Field. The victory snapped a five-match unbeaten streak at home for the Energy who lost at Taft Stadium for only the second time this year.
The Roughnecks finished with a 54-46% advantage in time of possession, with the Energy holding a 16-10 edge in shots. Nine of the OKC’s shots came after Tulsa took the lead.
There was one negative to the night for TRFC as Caffa was booked just before halftime. It was the fifth yellow card of the season for the former La Liga forward, meaning he will miss Thursday’s match in California with Los Angeles Galaxy II.
That game will kick off at 9:30 p.m. Tulsa time and will be available for viewing on YouTube through the USL Match Center.
The Roughnecks next home match at ONEOK Field will be on Saturday, July 22 when Phoenix Rising and international superstars Didier Drogba and Omar Bravo come to Tulsa. Kickoff for that match is set for 7:30 p.m. and tickets are available by clicking HERE.
Oklahoma City Energy 1 Tulsa Roughnecks FC 2
Saturday, July 8, 2017
Taft Stadium – Oklahoma City, OK
OKC – D. Gonzalez 39’
TUL – Caffa (PK) 50’
TUL – Calistri (Hayes) 66’
OKC – Daley (caution) 44’
OKC – Bond (caution) 45+3’
TUL – Caffa (caution) 45+3’
TUL – Calistri (caution) 60’
OKC – R.Dixon (caution) 64’
TUL – Ugarte (caution) 83’
TUL – Jadama (caution) 86’
OKC Energy: Cody Laurendi©, Kyle Hyland, Anthony Wallace, Mickey Daly, Richard Dixon (Sam Fink 84’), Jose Barril, Daniel Gonzalez, Chad Bond (Daniel Jackson 71’), Juan Pablo Guzman, Coy Craft (Luis Martinez 70’), Alex Dixon.
Shots: 16; Shots On-Goal: 3; Saves: 3; Fouls: 12; Corners: 2; Offsides: 0.
Tulsa Roughnecks FC: Fabian Cerda, Jorge Corrales, Modou Jadama, Bradley Bourgeois, Kosuke Kimura, Jacori Hayes, Collin Fernandez (Francisco Ugarte 79’), Joey Calistri, Juan Caffa-© (Jaime Ayala 85’), Joaquin Rivas (Paris Gee 78’), Ian Svantesson.
Shots: 10; Shots On-Goal: 5; Saves: 2; Fouls: 12; Corners: 4; Offsides: 3.
Orange smoke was in the air at Taft Stadium Saturday night. (Steven Christy)