Photo courtesy Darren Abate / San Antonio FC
SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio FC and the Swope Park Rangers played to a 1-1 draw in front of a crowd of 6,612 on Saturday night at Toyota Field as the Western Conference sides exchanged goals in the first half. Swope Park took the lead in the 29th minute as Kharlton Belmar got into the right side of the penalty area on a through-ball by Colton Storm and fired home low at the near post, but San Antonio hit back quickly as a turnover opened a chance that Pecka put home for the hosts. SAFC twice went close early in the second half as both Ryan Roushandel and Sonny Guadarrama had efforts saved by SPR goalkeeper Eric Dick, while Ever Guzman fired over after the hosts carved out a big chance following a turnover in Swope Park’s end. San Antonio continued to produce the better looks at goal as the second half went on, but neither side was able to find a late breakthrough as honors ended even.
29’ – SPR – Kharlton Belmar (Colton Storm)
33’ – SA – Pecka (Ever Guzman)
Three Things That Matter:
1. As in previous encounters between San Antonio and Swope Park the contrast in styles made for an interesting – and at times contentious – meeting between the Western Conference contenders, but the hosts will have been disappointed not to better take advantage of some uncharacteristically errant passing by the Rangers in their own half. If chances for the likes of Ever Guzman early in the second half could have been put away as cleanly as Pecka’s equalizer in the first half San Antonio certainly could have made it two wins from two at home this season.
2. For a second consecutive weekend, Swope Park took the lead but was unable to hold onto it on the road as the Rangers were unable to build on their impressive midweek win on home turf against Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC. Kharlton Belmar’s fifth goal of the season was another good example of how the Rangers can hurt you with a incisive pass by Colton Storm setting up the chance, but that proved the only shot on goal the visitors mustered in earning a point on the road.
3. San Antonio will come away from the game pleased with the way they were able to disrupt Swope Park, but with just one win from its opening four games of the new season SAFC is going to want to start putting some wins together to make a move up the Western Conference standings. With 10 points from their first five games, Swope Park has no such concerns, and is well placed ahead of a visit from a struggling OKC Energy FC next weekend that will give the Rangers a chance to build on their perfect home record.
USLSoccer.com Man of the Match
Pecka, San Antonio FC – Pecka not only produced a fine equalizer for the hosts but also put in a solid two-way display overall, winning seven tackles, recording two key passes and winning 13 of 19 duels.
San Antonio FC vs. Orange County SC – April 14, 8:30 p.m. ET, Toyota Field
Swope Park Rangers vs. OKC Energy FC – April 14, 8:30 p.m. ET, Shawnee Mission South District Stadium