SANDY, Utah – It was a historic night at Rio Tinto Stadium as Real Monarchs hosted the club’s first ever home match in its inaugural season in the USL. DF Justen Glad scored the club’s first home goal and the team earned a point with a 1-1 draw against Portland Timbers 2 in front of a crowd of 2,551 that braved chilling temperatures and driving rain for the match.
The Monarchs outshot Portland 11-5, taking control of the match in the second half, but couldn’t find the match-winner, moving their record to 0-1-2 (2 points).
In the seventh minute, Portland got out to an early lead on a counter-attack. FW Fatawu Safiu carried the ball up the right side into the box and ripped a shot near-post that beat GK Lalo Fernandez, who was caught leaning to the opposite side and caught a piece of the shot with his trailing leg, but not enough to stop the shot and the 1-0 Portland lead. Fernandez and Glad were two of six players on loan for the match from Real Salt Lake.
The Monarchs struck back in the 27th minute off a goal from Glad. MF Lucas Baldin sent a hard free kick into the box from the left side and Glad rose to head it in from inside the six-yard box for the club’s first ever home goal, equalizing at 1-1.
In an even first half that finished with both teams register three shots, the 1-1 tally held until halftime.
Things started to tilt in favor of the Monarchs in the second half and in the 69th minute, Portland DF Rennico Clarke received his second caution in as many minutes and was ejected from the match, leaving the Monarchs on the man advantage for the final 21 minutes of the match.
In the 75th minute, Portland nearly snatched the lead on a breakaway, as FW Kharlton Belmar got free up the right side, but his shot missed just over the crossbar.
The Monarchs were knocking on the door throughout the half and in the 86th minute the ball fell to MF Lennon Celestino for a shot that missed just over the crossbar on the left side. Two minutes later, another Monarchs opportunity was narrowly over the bar and the score remained 1-1.
In the first minute of stoppage time, DF Boyd Okwuonu skipped a ball across the edge of the six-yard box that found MF Pecka for a shot that was denied the game-winner with a fingertip save by Gleeson to push the ball just outside the far post and the match finished in a 1-1 draw.
The Monarchs will host the Colorado Springs Switchbacks on Saturday at Rio Tinto Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. MT
REAL MONARCHS 1-1 PORTLAND TIMBERS 2
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 8, 2015
RIO TINTO STADIUM
Goals by Period 1 2 F
Real Monarchs 1 0 1
Portland Timbers 2 1 0 1
PT2 – Fatawu Safiu – 7’
RM – Justen Glad (Lucas Baldin) – 27’
RM – Sebasitian Saucedo (Yellow, foul) – 27’
PT2 – Winchester Rundell (Yellow, handball) – 32’
PT2 – Rennico Clarke (Yellow, foul) – 68’
PT2 – Rennico Clarke (Yellow, foul/Red, second yellow) – 69’
Real Monarchs (4-3-3): Lalo Fernandez; Boyd Okwuonu, Justen Glad, Phanuel Kavita, Jordan Murrell; Lucas Baldin (C) (Riley McGovern, 70’), Fito Ovalle, Lennon Celestino; Eti Tavares (Pecka, 46’), Ricardo Velazco (Leon Brown, 87’), Sebastian Saucedo (Coco Navarro, 87’).
Substitutes not used: Eric Osswald, Darion Copeland, Alec Sundly, Coco Navarro, Leon Brown.
Portland Timbers 2 (4-3-3): Jake Gleeson; Taylor Peay, Rennico Clarke, Harrison Pelbridge, Andy Thoma; Nick Besler, Blair Gavin, Tim Payne; Fatawu Safiu (Matt Rose, 67’), Winchester Rundell (Schillo Tschuma, 67’), Kharlton Belmar (Steve Evans, 86’).
Substitutes not used: Justin Luthy, Anthony Manning, Blake Bodily.
Referee: Tyler Ploeger
Assistant Referees: Brad Jensen, Brandon Major
4th Official: Jeff Young
Weather: 37 and raining