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Monarchs push to 5-0 victory over Los Dos

Avila, Chang (twice), Abate Etoundi and Jasso all score in home victory

Courtesy of Lucas Muller

For the second match in this initial home stand, the Monarchs came out with of a squad of USL Championship rostered players with only the addition of David Ochoa, reigning Save of the Week holder, who started in goal for the the third straight match. James Moberg got his first start this season in place of the suspended Kalen Ryden while academy product Jordan Pena started for the injured Luis Palma. Stanley Okumu and Josh Heard also got there first starts this season in a further rotation of players in the absence of more players on loan from RSL.

From the start the Monarchs showed more signs of poise and patience while moving into their offensive attack, but the match remained fairly even with only a few good chances created by both sides until a low turf cutter from distance by Jack Blake went off the post and the led to a Monarchs’ corner. A poor clearance on the corner fell to Ricardo Avila who moved into space and placed a low roller cleanly into the corner of the net to open the scoring.

As the first half came to a close, a hard take down of Avila stopped play while he received attention and then finished with the score at 1-0 in favor of the Monarchs. Masta Kacher spent the break warming up and came in to replace Avila at the start of the second half and Avila eventually emerged with his ankle in a boot. Kacher moved into his familiar left wing spot while Chang moved into a more central role and Blake moved back into defensive midfield.

Galaxy 2 came out pressing extremely hard in an attempt to even the match, but a nice save from David Ochoa and increased offensive pressure from the Monarchs eventually led to a second goal when Josh Heard lead a quick count up field and laid it back off to the oncoming Maikel Chang whose shot found wood but still made its way in for a 2-0 lead.

Ten minute later another quick counter lead by Heard resulted in a red card to Los Dos’ central defender Diedie Traore when he pulled Josh down just outside the box. The resultant free kick ended in a third goal which the Galaxy keeper failed to set his defense properly and the rout was on.

Further goals by late teenage substitutes Lionel Abate Etoundi and Steve Jasso ran the score up to 5-0 and left Los Dos wondering just what had happened after such a decent start.

David Ochoa was great once again in goal and had a couple of saves that should land her i the save of the week competition for the third straight week. Masta Kacher came on in the second half an Andrew Brody moved up into the offense late to lead the second half charge and provide the spark of creativity. Coach Martin Vasquez described the 2nd half changes following the match in his postmatch interview as follows:

“It’s something that we talked about during the week. When we train, we call it neutral players, and usually those neutral players are the players that are creative, are the players that have the ability to provide creativity. I think Masta is one and I think Maikel is definitely a creative player; Andrew Brody on the right side. Looking at the options on the bench, after the 1-0 we needed someone to come in and help us hold the ball and somebody who can play behind Douglas and catch them on the counter with pace. Matt, Jamison, and myself, we said we think Maikel can help us there, Maikel can play this role, and he did it in going forward. Obviously, now we have flexibility and we might have to continue to do that because of the injuries that Luis Palma picked up and now Ricardo Avila.”

The Monarchs will run away from home to join up with the circus in Las Vegas next week in another tough road match before returning home the in two weeks to match up with another Nevada foe in Reno 1868.