OKC were second best Saturday night in PHX. Plain and simple. But if anything, the loss to Phoenix Rising will only help Energy FC. The Western Conference favorites were pretty much firing on all cylinders against a team that is still trying to gel. Jordan Cano and Christian Ibeagha have only played 180 minutes together, the former having only played 180 minutes of professional football in his young career. Throw in the multitude of other offseason changes, and this was always going to be a work in progress early in the season.
Fortunately for the Greens, they won’t have to wait long to redeem themselves. The best way to get over a loss is by getting back out on the pitch, and you can be sure the boys will be fired up to be playing back at home against Orange County SC on Wednesday night. Taft Stadium has proved to be a tough place to play for visiting teams with OKC’s last loss at home coming in July. Since then, Energy FC have won eight and drawn two.
After two matches played, Orange County sits near the bottom of the Western Conference table having drawn 1-1 with Phoenix in week one and losing 1-0 to Sacramento on Saturday night. OC will be without Michael Seaton for the visit to Taft Stadium as the forward was sent off late on against Sacramento.
OC started with a 4-1-4-1 formation in their last match: Rawls; Sorto, Juel-Nielsen, Crognale, Kontor (Powder, 45’); Quinn; Segbers, Hashimoto (Chaplow, 67’), Duke (Godoy, 79’), Enevoldsen; Seaton.
Energy FC fans will remember Christian Duke from his time in OKC. Duke, who just joined OC in 2018, spent the past two years at Swope Park where he led them to back-to-back USL Cup Finals.
OKC and OC played twice last season with the Greens taking six points from the fixtures – a 1-0 win at home in May and a 2-1 away win in August.
In addition to Wednesday’s match, OKC will travel to Fresno to take on new boys Fresno FC on Saturday night. It’s been a bit of a tough start for Fresno having lost their opener to fellow newcomers Las Vegas 2-3 and drawing 1-1 on Saturday against Los Dos despite playing up a man for over an hour. Fresno will have a chance to gain some momentum ahead of OKC’s visit as they travel to Seattle on Wednesday to take on Sounders FC 2. In both of Fresno’s matches this season, they’ve given up goals in the opening three minutes. The trip will see OKC face former Greens Jose Cuevas and Mickey Daly.
Fresno started against LA in a 4-4-2: Reynish; Ellis-Hayden, Daly, Del Campo, Cooper; Barrera (Verhoeven, 84’), Ribeiro, Cazarez (Chaney, 70’), Johnson; Caffa, Bustamante (Campbell, 89’).
Wednesday’s match will kick off at 7 p.m. CDT at Taft Stadium. For tickets, visit energyfc.com/march28.
Saturday’s match will kick off at 9 p.m. CDT at Chukchansi Park in Fresno, CA and will be available to watch on YouTube.