The Tulsa Roughnecks FC opened a three-game trip to the Pacific Northwest Wednesday night with a 1-0 victory over Seattle Sounders 2 at Starfire Sports Complex in a match that marked the return of Juan Pablo Caffa. The Roughnecks got a second-half goal from defender Francisco Ugarte on a 73rd minute corner kick to claim the three points.
Front page photo of Juan Pablo Caffa by Charis Wilson
It was a vital win for TRFC who improved its season point total to 36 and moved up to the fifth spot in the USL’s Western Conference table. Sounders 2 could have pulled to within one point of Tulsa with a victory.
The Roughnecks opened the match with a squad that featured Ugarte replacing the suspended Mo Jadama, and Pasha Kondrakhin starting in place of Ian Svantesson who has been dealing with a minor knee injury. In addition, Brady Ballew started in place of Jacori Hayes, the loanee from F.C. Dallas, who unavailable for the game.
The first half featured no goals but threatening chances at both ends. The Roughnecks nearly struck just four minutes into the match when Kondrakhin skimmed the post on a free kick from 23 yards.
The Sounders 2 forced a pair of saves from TRFC goalkeeper Fabian Cerda at the other end. In the sixth minute, Zach Mathers rolled a shot from distance straight at the keeper, and four minutes later, David Olson forced a chest save from Cerda to keep it scoreless.
A shot from 30 yards out off the left foot of Collin Fernandez forced a save from Sounders 2 keeper Tyler Miller in the 24th minute, and Seattle’s Felix Chenkam rattled the crossbar in the 32nd minute.
After having only 40% of the possession in the first half, the Roughnecks controlled more of the play after the break. It produced the first good chance of the half in the 58th minute as Fernandez and Joey Calistri worked a series of combination passes, but the final shot from Fernandez sliced just outside the far post.
The match changed just after the hour mark as Caffa, who has missed most of the past four matches with a leg injury, entered the contest for Ballew. Five minutes later, leading goal scorer Svantesson came on of Kondrakhin.
Svantesson immediately caused problems for the Sounders 2 back line, but it was Caffa who eventually turned the match. Just ten minutes after coming on, Caffa delivered a left-footed corner kick that was poked into the net by Ugarte to give the Roughnecks the one-goal lead. It was the team-leading sixth assist of the season for Caffa.
The one-goal would be enough for Tulsa to pick up the full three points, as Cerda registered his seventh clean sheet of the regular season.
The victory keeps the Roughnecks all-time record against the Sounders 2 perfect. TRFC is 4-0-0 in four meetings with Sounders 2, including a 3-0-0 mark at Starfire.
The Roughnecks will now move to Portland, Oregon to continue their Pacific Northwest road trip with a Sunday afternoon match at Providence Park against Timbers 2. Providence Park is the home stadium for the Portland Timbers of MLS.
TRFC defeated Timbers 2 by a 3-1 score at ONEOK Field earlier this season. Kickoff on Sunday is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. CDT.
Seattle Sounders 2 0 - Tulsa Roughnecks FC 1
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
Starfire Sports Complex – Tukwila, WA
TUL – Ugarte (Caffa) 72’
TUL – Fernandez (caution) 19’
TUL – Rivas (caution) 70’
SEA – Mathers (caution) 76’
Seattle Sounders 2: Tyler Miller, Jordy Delem, Brian Nana-Sinkam, Sam Rogers, Steve Whyte, Ray Saari©, Calum Mallace, Zach Mathers, Charles Renken (Shandon Hopeau 62’), David Olsen, Felix Chenkam (Javorn Stevens 83’).
Shots: 21; Shots on Goal: 6; Saves: 2; Fouls: 13; Corners: 7; Offside: 1.
Tulsa Roughnecks FC: Fabian Cerda©, Jorge Corrales, Bradley Bourgeois, Francisco Ugarte, Jaime Ayala, Collin Fernandez, Joaquin Rivas, Brady Ballew (Juan Pablo Caffa 62’), Christian Thierjung (Jonathan Levin 86’), Joey Calistri, Pasha Kondrakhin (Ian Svantesson 67’).
Shots: 13; Shots on Goal: 3; Saves: 6; Fouls: 15; Corners: 7; Offside: 4.