Real Monarchs SLC 1 vs Sacramento Republic FC 1
March 9, 2018; Sacramento, California; Papa Murphy’s Park
Real Monarchs SLC (0-0-1, 1 point); Sacramento Republic FC (0-0-1, 1 point)
Man of the Match: 18-year-old goalkeeper David Ochoa came up big throughout the night for the Monarchs in their season opener, making five clearances and four massive saves to keep the Sacramento attack at bay. Ochoa shut down Villyan Bijev early in the seventh minute after he got space on the left side, preventing the early lead. The young ‘keeper again stopped another opportunity in the second half as Cameron Iwasa circled around the Monarchs backline and took a shot on goal only to be met by Ochoa.
Telling Stat: 53.1%. In one-on-one situations, Real Monarchs came away with ball, making for a total of 56 duels won throughout the night, earning a 53.1% duels success rate on the night. As the Monarchs found its rhythm early in the second half, it outdueled 35 times to Sacramento’s 21, giving way to testing the California club’s defense with chances created around the attacking third.
What You Missed: Real Monarchs began its fifth campaign in the USL Championship, starting off the season with a point away from home in Sacramento. Forward Jack Blake donned the captain’s armband for the first time with the Monarchs and opened the scoring for the Monarchs in 2019 with a converted penalty. The opening match saw the debut of seven players putting on the Monarchs jersey for the first time as well, as Donny Toia, Erik Holt, Luis Palma, Douglas Martinez, Ricardo Avila, and Lionel Abate Etoundi all made debuts for the Monarchs.
So What: The Monarchs now hold one point on the league table after splitting the spoils in California in its first match of the 2019 season. It now returns home to Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman, where it boasted a league-best record of 13-2-2 (41 points) in 2018. The opening match on the Monarchs home slate will see it host expansion side El Paso Locomotive FC on Saturday, March 9th where kickoff from Zions Bank Stadium is set for 1:00 p.m. MT.