The San Diego Loyal played their 30th game in the 2023 USL Championship season this Sunday, Sept. 24, at Torero Stadium.
The 1-1 result from the match was a rather disappointing one, as the Las Vegas Lights are in last place in the USL Western Conference and have had a dismal season to date.
Most of the action in the match came in the first half, as both teams scored their goals in the opening 45 minutes. Las Vegas struck first in the 16th minute with a goal by Daniel Rios. Rios scored on the deflection in front of the net after Koke Vegas saved a shot. The scoring play began with a perfect goal kick by Alan Diaz, who found Azriel Gonzalez on the left wing.
The Loyal responded in the 27th minute with a goal off a corner kick by Adrien Perez from a cross by Charlie Adams. Perez scored via an impressive towering header to tie the match at Torero Stadium, but then the Loyal or either team could add to the scoreboard.
Sanh Diego was denied a few times by Alan Diaz, who stopped shots by Grant Stoneman and Ronaldo Damus. Koke Vegas also had a few key saves in the game to keep the Loyal in the match against the Lights.
The Loyal also had some finishing issues with Evan Conway, most notably missing a clear-cut opportunity in front of net in the 54th minute. Ronaldo Damus also missed a header in the dying minutes of the match, which had the potential to be the defining moment of the clash.
San Diego played much better in the first half of the match and was able to produce much more offense than in the second half.
The Loyal are third place in the USL Championship Western Conference, and their next game will be at Torero Stadium against Monterey Bay on Sept. 30.
Francisco, 26, Chula Vista/Tijuana. I have been a Padres fan all my life, did most of the series previews and recaps in the Padres’ 2016 season for EVT. Now I focus more on the local soccer scene. Tijuana Xolos, San Diego Loyal, San Diego Wave.