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Real Monarchs SLC Move Home Opener to Rio Tinto Stadium

Herriman-based Zions Bank Stadium to Open on Monday, April 30;
Friday “Select-A-Seat” Event in Herriman Features Monarchs Scrimmage v. UVU at 4:00 p.m. MT;
2018 USL Opener v. Portland Timbers 2 Now at Rio Tinto Stadium, with 1:00 p.m. MT Kickoff

HERRIMAN, Utah (Tuesday, March 13, 2018)Real Monarchs SLC announced today a venue change for Saturday, March 31 against Portland Timbers 2, as the club’s former Rio Tinto Stadium home in Sandy, Utah will now host the club’s 2018 USL home opener. The decision to relocate the match was made to provide the best possible fan experience with the safety and comfort of the fans held in the club’s highest priority as the construction of the world-class Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman enters its final phase.

Kickoff against T2 on March 31 will remain at 1:00 p.m. MT. Last year, Rio Tinto Stadium provided a distinct home-field advantage for the Monarchs, as the defending USL regular-season champions amassed a league-best home record of 12-1-3 (39 points) during the 2017 regular season.

Additionally, an ‘Easter Eggstravaganza” will take place at “The RioT” prior to the match. Fans 12 and under can partake in a giant Easter egg hunt in and around the Sandy venue, as well as have their pictures taken with the Easter Bunny. Starting Wednesday at 12 noon MT at, fans can purchase a special “Family 4-Pack” – 4 tickets & 4 FREE hot dogs – for just $24.

The Monarchs will now christen its new 5,000-seat Zions Bank Stadium on Monday, April 30 at 7:00 p.m. MT against Las Vegas Lights FC in the inaugural “Saints-and-Sinners / I-15 Rivalry” match between the two sides. Ticket information for the match against Lights FC will be announced at a later date.

This Friday in Herriman, the Real Monarchs will host an open scrimmage against Utah Valley University at 4:00 p.m. MT, as part of the club’s “Select-A-Seat” event at Zions Bank Stadium. From 3-7p MT, fans can hand-select their 2018 USL season ticket locations, and watch reigning USL Coach of the Year Mark Briggs prepare his side just a week out from the season opener at Tulsa.

About Real Monarchs SLC

Real Monarchs SLC open its fourth USL campaign on Saturday, March 24 at 6:00 p.m. MT on the road, visiting Tulsa Roughnecks FC at ONEOK Field. For the second time in the previous three seasons, the Monarchs open the year on the road, where the club boasts an unbeaten 2-0-1 mark (7 points) in season lid-lifters. In last year’s opener at Portland, the Monarchs toppled T2 at Providence Park, 2-1, courtesy of goals from DF James Moberg and MF Nick Besler in Mike Petke’s lone USL match as the side’s head coach, setting the tone for a record-setting year in the USL.

The Monarchs arrive in Tulsa as the defending USL Regular-Season Champions, having earned the best record in the league a season ago, finishing the year at 20-5-7 (67 points) atop the league table. The Monarchs carried its lead atop the standings for the majority of the season, breaking the USL all-time record for consecutive victories when it won nine straight games from April 22 to June 19. During that run of nine consecutive wins, the Monarchs scored 22 goals while only conceding 6 times, earning five shutouts. Prior to the end of the 2017 season, DFs Michael Gallagher and James Moberg along with MFs Charlie Adams and Danny Cruz all earned new contracts ahead of the 2018 season while GK Connor Sparrow and MF Nick Besler both signed contracts with Real Salt Lake before the end of the 2017 season.

Head Coach Mark Briggs will lead the Monarchs in his first full season in charge of the club after replacing Mike Petke in March 2017. Briggs went on to post a 19-5-7 (64 points) record at the helm during the regular-season and lead the club to its first ever USL Playoff appearance. The Monarchs finished the regular-season with a 20-5-7 (67 points) record, good for the best record in the USL. Under Briggs’ guidance, the team came within two points of the all-time points record set by New York Red Bulls II in 2016 (69), also falling two wins shy of that all-time record (22). On November 20, Briggs was recognized as the 2017 USL Coach of the Year for his leadership in the Monarchs historic season.

Briggs returns a Real Monarchs coaching staff which includes former Real Salt Lake and New York Red Bulls defender Jamison Olave, who retired as a player following the 2016 MLS season and has spent the last year earning his coaching accreditations while assisting with the Monarchs. Goalkeeper Coach Matt Glaeser returns for his second season with the USL side, arriving in December 2016, along with Briggs after serving as an assistant at Wilmington.

Briggs will also welcome former Monarchs midfielder Danny Cruz to an assistant coaching role with the club for the 2018 season. Prior to signing with the Monarchs, Cruz, 28, logged 137 career Major League Soccer appearances, 99 of them in a starting role.