SACRAMENTO, Ca. – Saint Louis FC came back to earn a 2-2 draw away to Sacramento Republic FC in front of 10,570 fans at Papa Murphy’s Park in Match 16 of the USL Regular Season.
Sacramento Republic scored the first goal in the 28th minute through Cameron Iwasa after he charged up the middle and curled the ball inside the near post for his team-leading sixth goal of the season. He would double his tally for the night shortly after halftime on a counter attack to see Sacramento lead 2-0 and look destined for the win. However, Saint Louis FC would storm back with a goal from Albert Dikwa following a free kick situation in the 74th minute before Wal Fall earned the draw with an inch-perfect free kick in the top corner in the 90th minute. The draw sees Saint Louis FC improve to 5-5-6 with 21 points while Sacramento Republic moves to 8-4-5 and 29 points in the USL Western Conference.
The first half saw Sacramento enjoy a majority of the possession and create the most chances with the first arriving in the 4th minute as Vilyan Bijev had an effort go over the crossbar after a turnover in the midfield. Iwasa then had two chances in quick succession in the 25th and 27th minutes before he converted in the 28th minute as he cut inside the middle of the STLFC defense and curled the ball past Tomas Gomez. Saint Louis would respond through Kyle Culbertson who had his effort from outside the box go narrowly over the crossbar. Sam Fink then had a great chance in the 40th minute as his header looped on top of the net after a corner kick situation. Sacramento had the last good opportunity of the half as Bijev shot from outside the box which flew past the post to maintain the 1-0 lead going into the halftime break.
The second half started with Sacramento doubling their advantage through Iwasa after he was played behind the defense on the counter attack and he finished past Gomez for his second of the night. Gomez then had a great save in the 58th minute on a shot from Bijev to keep Saint Louis FC in the game and they would half the deficit in the 74th minute as Aedan Stanley curled in a free kick that was headed off the crossbar by Fall before landing at the feet of Dikwa who put it in the back of the net. Fall would get his goal in the 90th minute, however, as his free kick from 25 yards out was placed perfectly in the top right corner to level the score at 2-2 and earn the point for Saint Louis FC.
“It’s a massive point we’ve gained tonight,” said STLFC Head Coach Anthony Pulis. “To come from two goals down at a place like Sacramento shows again the type of characters we have in our group. The never say die attitude and togetherness we have is special and counts for so much. There were certainly areas of our performance tonight that have to be better and the guys know that but we’ll take the point and concentrate on getting a good week of training so we’re ready for Rio Grande Valley next week.”
Saint Louis FC vs. Rio Grande Valley FC – Saturday, June 30 at 7:30 p.m. CT at Toyota Stadium
Sacramento Republic FC at Fresno FC – Saturday, June 30 at 9:00 p.m. CT at Chukchansi Park