Friday, March 27, 2015

Republic FC prove to be hotter than the Fuego


Sacramento Republic FC defender Emrah Klimenta, right, tries to convert a cross in front of Fresno's Elliott Hord, a UCD graduate, in the Republic's 6-0 win on Wednesday. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

From page B1 | May 29, 2014 |

SACRAMENTO — After three wins in three different cities in six days, Sacramento Republic FC finally can rest knowing that it has exceeded the wildest expectations of its fans.

The Republic, who play in USL PRO, demolished the Fresno Fuego of USL PDL (fourth division), 6-0, in the third round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday night at Cosumnes River College, setting up a fourth-round matchup against the San Jose Earthquakes, one of Sacramento’s two MLS affiliates.

Nermanja Vuković, Justin Braun, Thomas Stewart, Rodrigo Lopez, Emrah Klimenta and Steven Evans all scored in a dominating, but scrappy performance that also featured a red card for each team, multiple scuffles on the field and a penalty save.

“It feels great. I hope the team gets to realize that we’re a good team,” Lopez said, “We’re a very deep team as well. I think we can go pretty far. Not just in the Open Cup, but in league as well. (We can) make the playoffs and contend for the championship.

“Hopefully we walk in (Thursday) and they tell us that we have a couple of days off,” he added with a laugh.

After arriving back home late Tuesday night due to weather delays from its two-game road trip — where it picked up wins in Rochester, New York, and Dayton, Ohio — the Republic started Wednesday’s match out slowly, nearly giving up a goal in the fifth minute, only to be saved by a goal-line clearance from defender Harrison Delbridge.

The teams traded quality opportunities until Fuego defender Alfred Edmonds was sent off in the 41st minute for his second yellow card, giving Sacramento a man advantage.

The locals quickly pounced just four minutes later as some extended possession saw midfielder Octavio Guzman pick out an overlapping run from Vuković, who received the ball 12 yards out in the left side of the box. The left back rifled a left-footed rocket into the roof of the net for the eventual winning goal of the match.

“Nermanja was wide-open,” Guzman said. “It was easy to do.”

Shortly after the break, Guzman won the ball at the midfield stripe to set up a three-on-one situation where Braun played Stewart through onto goal.

Stewart cut the ball back, drew the Fuego keeper off his line and returned the ball to Braun, who was able to tap the ball in from close range. Up 2-0, the Republic was in control and already had eyes on the June 11 game against San Jose at Kezar Stadium in San Francisco.

The next four goals came in a flurry in which Fuego goalkeeper Francisco Hernandez was forced to make a variety of highlight-reel saves to keep the score as close as it was.

Stewart scored eight minutes after Braun, on an assist from Lopez, and then 15 minutes after that, the diminutive playmaker brought the house down himself with a spectacular effort.

Picking the ball up 30 yards from goal, Lopez slalomed between two defenders, pushed the ball past a third while running around the other side of the helpless defender, then took a touch to his right and chipped the ball over the onrushing Hernandez, sending the crowd of 1,523 into pandemonium.

“I don’t know where I got it from,” the halftime substitute said in disbelief. “I didn’t know I had the legs to do it.”

Klimenta and Evans each scored to cap off the blowout that wasn’t done with controversy.

Republic midfielder Ivan Mirković fouled a Fuego player in the box in stoppage time to receive his second yellow card of the game and set up a penalty kick for Fresno.

Mirković was given a standing ovation as he exited the field and goalkeeper Jakubek dove to his right to stone Jose Cuevas and then to his right again to deny Cuevas on the follow-up as the referee blew for full time.

“We expect to win; you never really contemplate what the score is going to be,” said Rod Underwood, Sacramento’s acting manager while head coach Preki finished serving the second of a two-game suspension in the Open Cup. “We just expect to win.”

Notes: Mirković’s red card will rule him out of the fourth-round game against San Jose … Elliott Hord, who is from Fresno and suited up for UC Davis until 2012, is a midfielder for the Fuego. He played all 90 minutes on Wednesday.

— Reach Evan Ream at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @EvanReam



Evan Ream

Evan Ream graduated with a B.A. in journalism from Southern Oregon in Ashland, Ore. He loves soccer more than any person rationally should. "Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure them it is much more serious than that." - Bill Shankly
  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .


    Anti-gay initiative puts AG in a bind

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

    County supervisors consider options for historic courthouse

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Two found dead of apparent shooting in West Davis home

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    New Paso Fino design trims lots

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

    Co-pilot may have hidden illness, German prosecutors say

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Senate’s Harry Reid announces he won’t seek re-election

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Woodland police warn of kidnapping phone scam

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

    Need a new best friend?

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Lawyer disputes police’s hoax claim in California kidnapping

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

    Davis Flower Arrangers meet Wednesday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Sign up for Camp Shakespeare

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Empower Yolo offers peer counselor training

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    State loosens sex offender residency restrictions

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

    Neighbors invited to adopt Willow Creek Park

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    Sing along on April Fool’s Day

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    Three nabbed in counterfeiting probe

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A6



    Can he get life back on track?

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

    Blame Reid for impasse

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7

    Practice cancer prevention each day

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

    Turnabout is fair play

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7

    Be aware and be afraid

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7



    UCD men edge Hawaii on the court

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    UCD’s Hawkins, Harris to shoot at Final Four

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Home sweet home: Aggie women win a tennis match

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Devil boys grind out a net win at Franklin

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    DHS baseballers fall to Vintage in eight innings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    DYSA roundup: Recent youth softball games feature big hitting

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Sacramento get its second straight win

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Sharks get a key win over Detroit

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery





    UCD Student Fashion Association presents charity fashion show

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    ‘Get Hard’ comes across as rather limp

    By Derrick Bang | From Page: A8 | Gallery

    Smokey Brights to perform at Sophia’s

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    ‘Deserted Destinations’ is April exhibit at Gallery 625

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9 | Gallery

    Monticello announces April live-music shows

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    Leonardo Tuchman’s work shows at UC Davis Craft Center Gallery

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

    Sacramento Youth Symphony holding open auditions

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

    Preview Art Studio Tour participants’ work at The Artery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery



    Camry Hybrid takes a step forward

    By Ann M. Job | From Page: B3



    Celebrate Rusty Jordan’s Life

    By Creator | From Page: A4



    Comics: Friday, March 27, 2015

    By Creator | From Page: B4