Photo courtesy Lori Scholl / Tulsa Roughnecks FC
TULSA, Okla. – Late goals by Chandler Hoffman and Charlie Adams saw Real Monarchs SLC rally for a 3-2 victory against Tulsa Roughnecks FC in front of 5,203 fans at ONEOK Field on Saturday night. The Monarchs took the lead in just the seventh minute as a floated cross from the right by Maikel Chang found Corey Baird at the back post for a header back across into the right corner of the net. Real almost added to its lead late in the first half as first Sebastian Velasquez had a shot from outside the penalty area saved by Roughnecks goalkeeper Fabian Cerda, and then Chang hit the crossbar with a chipped effort from distance, and Tulsa hit back just past the hour-mark as a low cross by Paris Gee was knocked home at close range by Joaquin Rivas. The Roughnecks then grabbed the lead with seven minutes to go as Monarchs goalkeeper Alex Horwath allowed a rebound from a header by Tulsa’s Riggs Lennon, allowing Rivas to put home his second of the night, but the Monarchs stole all three points at the death as Hoffman scored in the 89th minute off Chang’s second assist of the night, and Adams put home the winner in the first minute of stoppage time to earn victory.
7’ – SLC – Corey Baird (Maikel Chang)
61’ – TUL – Joaquin Rivas (Paris Gee)
83’ – TUL – Joaquin Rivas
89’ – SLC – Chandler Hoffman (Maikel Chang)
90+’ – SLC – Charlie Adams
Three Things That Matter:
1. With time running out it appeared the Monarchs would be made to pay for their inability to take advantage of the superiority they showed in the first half, but late dramatics by Chandler Hoffman and Charlie Adams saw the visitors claim victory in their season opener. After falling to defeat at ONEOK Field a season ago Real was looking for some revenge and it couldn’t have gained it in any less dramatic fashion.
2. The Roughnecks’ comeback to take the lead with seven minutes to go showed a positive turnaround from the side after it had only managed two shots that missed the target in the first half. Joaquin Rivas proved the man on the spot each time, and appeared to have got Tulsa a morale-boosting victory, but the side’s inability to put the game away late proved costly as the Roughnecks fell to a second consecutive loss to start the season.
3. The newcomers for the Monarchs were going to be under the spotlight in their first appearances for the defending regular-season champion, and Maikel Chang made a big first impression with a pair of assists that showed what the Cuban playmaker can bring to a game. Add in a solid display in midfielder from Justin Portillo that saw him win seven of eight duels, and there should be plenty to look forward to again for Monarchs fans.
USLSoccer.com Man of the Match
Maikel Chang, Real Monarchs SLC – Chang notched two assists, recorded six key passes and five shots overall, while also doing solid work in midfield to win 10 of 13 duels overall.
Tulsa Roughnecks FC vs. Orange County SC – March 31, 4 p.m. ET, ONEOK Field
Real Monarchs SLC vs. Portland Timbers 2 – March 31, 3 p.m. ET, Zions Bank Stadium