Photo courtesy Lori Scholl / Tulsa Roughnecks FC
TULSA, Okla. – Ian Svantesson notched a pair of goals, while Juan Pablo Caffa had a goal and assist as Tulsa Roughnecks FC earned a 3-1 victory against Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 on Thursday night at ONEOK Field. Tulsa (3-3-0, 9pts) opened the game on the front foot, producing a pair of chances in the opening minute, but after the game settled down the hosts took the lead in the 27th minute as Juan Pablo Caffa curled home a perfect free kick from 23 yards into the top-right corner. Tulsa’s Paris Gee also went close 11 minutes later as WFC2 goalkeeper Spencer Richey made a good low save, but the Roughnecks doubled their lead five minutes before the break as Caffa’s cross from the left was nodded home by Ian Svantesson. WFC2 (2-4-2, 8pts) hit back three minutes into the second half as Gloire Amanda juked past a pair of defenders and shot into the right side of the net for his third goal this season, but Svantesson’s volleyed finish off Joey Calistri’s cross from the right restored Tulsa’s two-goal lead five minutes later. Vancouver almost pulled a goal back when Thomas Sanner headed off the crossbar with four minutes to go, but the hosts closed out the game to get its busy week off to an ideal start.
27’ – TUL – Juan Pablo Caffa
40’ – TUL – Ian Svantesson (Juan Pablo Caffa)
48’ – VAN – Gloire Amanda
53’ – TUL – Ian Svantesson (Joey Calistri)
Three Things That Matter:
1. The Roughnecks entered Thursday night’s game looking for a big bounce-back performance after their defeat against Colorado Springs, and got exactly the result they were looking for back on home turf. A pair of outstanding pieces of play by Juan Pablo Caffa – the first finding the net, the second the head of Ian Svantesson – ensured the side would never trail in the contest, and the side was also able to taper off toward the conclusion to get ready for Saturday’s contest against Orange County. A sweep of their two-game week would put Tulsa strongly in the mix in the Western Conference.
2. Juan Pablo Caffa’s arrival in Tulsa is very quickly looking like one of the signings of the season anywhere in the USL, with the veteran Argentinian playmaker again showing how key he will be to the Roughnecks’ success this season. Caffa not only produced a goal and assist on the night, but also created another six chances that had Spencer Richey not been on his game – the WFC2 goalkeeper finished with four saves – or Tulsa been quite as profligate in front of goal could have resulted in a wider margin of victory.
3. While it came in defeat, Gloire Amanda’s first professional goal was a moment to remember in a bright performance for the young Vancouver forward that saw him threaten the Roughnecks back line regularly. A former Whitecaps Residency standout, Amanda worked his way beautifully past a pair of challenges in the penalty area to fire home into the right side of the net for his goal, but also finished with four shots on the night as his speed and touch showed a lot of promise. Amanda’s third start of his young career will hopefully provide a solid springboard for the rest of the season.
USLSoccer.com Man of the Match
Juan Pablo Caffa, Tulsa Roughnecks FC – Caffa put in a commanding performance to lead the Roughnecks to a big win to kick off its home stand.
Tulsa Roughnecks FC vs. Orange County SC – May 13, 8 p.m. ET, ONEOK Field
Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 vs. Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC – May 14, 6 p.m. ET, Thunderbird Stadium