SACRAMENTO, CA— Sounders FC 2 (1-3-0, 3 points) battled to a disappointing 1-0 loss on the road against Sacramento Republic FC (3-0-1, 10 points) on Saturday night at Papa Murphy’s Park. It was a hectic affair as both sides were reduced to 10 men in the first half after a pair of red cards, while S2 saw another player sent off midway through the second half. John Hutchinson’s side returns to action on Wednesday, April 11 against Real Monarchs SLC at Cheney Stadium (7:00 p.m. PT / USL YouTube Channel).
S2 dominated proceedings throughout the first half, and their tactical advantage was intensified when forward Felix Chenkam was taken down on a breakaway, drawing a straight red card for Republic FC defender Mitchell Taintor. The visitors continued to boss possession but were ultimately unable to capitalize on their numerical advantage before S2 defender Rodrigue Ele was sent off for his second yellow card of the match in the 44th minute, ensuring both sides would play with ten men to start the second half.
Despite momentum swinging toward the hosts to end the first half, S2 came flying out of the gates after the break. The Rave Green had the best chance of the opening stages, with Ibrahim Usman picking out the run of Chenkam with an inch-perfect cross in the 54th minute, but the Cameroonian’s headed effort was tipped over the crossbar by Sacramento goalkeeper Josh Cohen. The tie shifted in favor of Sacramento in the 63rd minute, when Rave Green defender Denso Ulysse received a straight red card for a challenge on Villyan Bijev.
The scoreless deadlock ended when Republic FC was awarded a penalty kick after S2 substitute Jake Morris brought down Shannon Gomez on the edge of the area. Midfielder Adam Moffat found the back of the net from the ensuing spot kick.
S2 nearly found a late equalizer through Nick Hinds. In the 93rd minute, captain Ray Saari launched a long-ball directly into the path of Hinds, who raced behind the defense but was unable to slide his shot past the onrushing Cohen.