PHOENIX RISING FC

Goal-fest streak continues as Phoenix Rising FC ousts LA Galaxy II

Apr 9, 2022, 11:44 PM | Updated: 11:53 pm
Phoenix Rising FC midfielder Luis Seijas celebrates scoring a goal in a 3-1 win over LA Galaxy II i...
Phoenix Rising FC midfielder Luis Seijas celebrates scoring a goal in a 3-1 win over LA Galaxy II in a USL Championship match at Wild Horse Pass in Chandler, Ariz., on April 9, 2022. (Ashley Orellana Photo)
(Ashley Orellana Photo)

Death. Taxes. Phoenix Rising-Los Dos goal-fests.

With a 3-1 PRFC win at Wild Horse Pass in Chandler on Saturday night, Phoenix Rising FC and LA Galaxy II have now combined to score three or more goals in 11 straight meetings dating back to May 2018. Rising’s three goals also extend the streak of one team scoring at least three goals to 11 in a row as well.

Despite last season’s leading scorer Santi Moar being out for a “minimum” of two to three weeks due to an ankle injury, PRFC midfielder Luis Seijas was able to overtake Claudio Repetto and Marcus Epps as the team’s top goalscorer with a first half brace on Saturday night. The Venezuelan’s goal tally on the 2022 USL Championship campaign is now up to three.

“We needed this win for the people, for the fans, for ourselves,” Seijas told reporters postgame. “We train. We put in a lot of effort.

“The game against San Diego didn’t go well, but after that, it was a good week for us – [three wins]. I gained a lot of confidence this week. Personally, I had my whole family here from Venezuela. My daughters were here so it was an emotional night for me.”

“He’s extremely experienced,” Phoenix Rising manager Rick Schantz told reporters postgame. “He’s calm on the ball. He strikes the ball, obviously, very well.

“We asked him to do a lot more defending today and he didn’t even hesitate. I’m so happy for him. We got a cup of coffee a few weeks ago and talked… It feels like it is really paying off now.

PRFC was still without the likes of starting center back James Musa (lower-body) and left back Babou Njie (groin). Kevon Lambert played as a center back while Valley native Ryan Flood started at left back for the third consecutive match.

In typical Rising fashion, Phoenix out-shot Los Dos 22-11 (7-2 on target) and created more big chances (5-1) despite only having 41% possession. That’s largely due to PRFC’s defensive performance that featured the team winning its aerial duels (10-8), tackles (14-8) and interceptions (15-10). PRFC goalkeeper Ben Lundt also had two saves.

The one defensive lapse came with a little bit of misfortune in the second half, as a longball ball fell generously for Los Dos’ Preston Judd, who was able to get the hockey assist on L.A.’s lone goal on the night.

“LA Galaxy II plays nice football,” Schantz said. “In the first half we were able to force them to play wide, but then what you saw was… three games in a week was taking its toll.

“We had to play 120 minutes on Wednesday, so coming out in the second half was really hard. True to form, when we gave up the goal our guys turned it up another notch. I’m proud of them but we still have some things to fix.”

And just as he did off the bench in stoppage time in the 2-0 away win over San Antonio FC, Epps put the game to rest with a last-minute goal to restore his side’s two-goal advantage. However, Epps played the full 90 minutes on Saturday night, as he is now tied with Repetto for second place on the Phoenix Rising scoring chart.

STOPPAGE TIME

LA Galaxy II left back Josh Drack played with PRFC’s Channing Chasten at Hamilton High School in Chandler. Drack was an Arizona Arsenal and RSL academy youth and also played at GCU.

UP NEXT

Phoenix Rising hosts New Mexico United at WHP in the first of back-to-back meetings between the two rivals.

The first will be in USL Championship play on Saturday at 7:30 before the U.S. Open Cup third-round matchup on Wednesday — also at 7:30 p.m.

However, Moar will not be able to play in either match against his former side.

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