Photo courtesy of Seattle Sounders FC 2
TUKWILA, Wash. – Real Monarchs SLC rebounded from its first loss of the season with a 3-1 win against Seattle Sounders FC 2 on Saturday at Starfire Stadium. Chandler Hoffman opened the scoring with a first-half penalty kick and set up Nick Besler’s 73rd-minute tally. Jose Hernandez also found the back of the net for the Monarchs who improve to 4-1-0 (12 points) this season. Hoffman had a chance at a brace deep into second-half stoppage time with another penalty kick attempt, but S2 goalkeeper Tyler Miller turned it away with a diving save to his right. David Olsen tallied the lone goal for Seattle in the 48th minute. S2 drops to 2-3-0 (6 points).
35’ – SLC – Chandler Hoffman (penalty)
48’ – SEA – David Olsen
68’ – SLC – Jose Hernandez
73’ – SLC – Nick Besler (Chandler Hoffman)
Three Things That Mattered:
1. Real suffered their first loss on the road against Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC last week, unable to come back from a two-goal deficit and falling 2-1. This time around, the Monarchs finished their chances with regularity. Hoffman’s left-footed penalty kick conversion was his third goal of the season, which leads the club. Hernandez had a strong second half, making a solid cut to his left to create the go-ahead goal. Midfielder Nick Besler put the match away in the closing 20 minutes as Real found plenty of holes in Seattle’s defense down the stretch.
2. Besler set the tone of the first half more than any other player with a couple key plays on either side of the pitch. In the 27th minute, Seattle’s Sam Rogers headed the ball in front of Monarchs goalkeeper Lalo Fernandez who rushed off his line. With the ball bound for goal, Besler rushed in and cleared it just before the goal line. On the other end in the 34th minute, Besler set himself up with a left-footed shot that just rose over the crossbar. While it didn’t result in a score, the Monarchs stayed in the offensive third and notched the opening goal shortly after. Besler would later get into the score sheet himself in a well-rounded performance.
3. Fernandez escaped danger the first time he whiffed on a punch-out. He didn’t have the same fortune in the second half during Seattle’s 48th-minute set piece. Fernandez again rushed off his line and could not make contact with the free kick. Instead, the ball popped out to David Olsen who slotted it home to tie the score at 1-1.
USLSoccer.com Man of the Match:
Nick Besler, Real Monarchs SLC – With a goal and a goal-line clearance, Besler had a heavy presence on both ends of the pitch for the Monarchs.
Seattle Sounders FC 2 vs. San Antonio FC – April 25, 10:30 p.m. ET, Starfire Stadium
Real Monarchs SLC vs. Swope Park Rangers – April 29, 6 p.m. ET, Rio Tinto Stadium