Draw Level, Then Dab
The RGVFC Toros dominated Vancouver Whitecaps 2 in both possession and shots. Unfortunately, they needed a second half goal just to finish the match level .
Despite not holding the ball as much as their opponent, Vancouver was able to find some success on the counter attack. They scored the match’s opening goal doing just that. After getting out on the break, Whitecaps 2’s Marco Bustos played a ball across the area. There was no sense of urgency for the Toros’ defense to clear the pass out and it found Deklan Wynne. The defender beat Houston Dynamo loanee Calle Brown.
The second half was filled with opportunities for RGV. Unfortunately, most of those goals went by the wayside. Francisco Pungo and Eric Bird had quality chances, but couldn’t knock the ball home. Finally, a cross from Bird was redirected out to TJ Casner, who knocked it home. He followed that with his version of skipping combined with the Dab. No more goals were scored and for the second time in a few weeks, the clubs drew.
Dynamo Theory’s Man of the Match TJ Casner: The former Clemson Tiger has been in good form lately. He’s been creative on the ball and scored his second goal this month. The dance moves were interesting, but did not sway my grading either way.
Eric Bird: He set up Casner’s goal and played a physical, complete match for the Toros.
Todd Wharton: Bird’s former college teammate is starting to come into his own as the primary distributor, replacing Charlie Ward in essence as mentioned in a previous article. He completed 92.5% of his 67 passes against Whitecaps 2.
TJ Casner on how exciting it was to level the match with his second half goal:
“It was very exciting. It's always good to score goals at home in front of the fans and give them a reward for their support. I was hoping we could use the momentum from the goal to win the game, but we were a bit unlucky in the final third.”
The Good Guys: Rio Grande Valley FC Toros (7-10-6)
It’s now a four match unbeaten streak for RGVFC, equally their best on the season. Over that span, we’ve seen Wharton and Casner take on major roles in the attack. Eric Bird is still a do everything type of player. Jorginho James is looking to get forward more often, which helps a sometimes struggling attack.
Up top is still one of the bigger question marks for the club. Ruben Luna has only been moderately successful and Francisco Pungo is active, athletic and high energy, but can’t seem to find the net. They will need contributions from the striker position to make a playoff run. The defense looked composed for the most part in the run of play this week and will look to keep that trend going.
The Bad Guys: Real Monarchs SLC (16-3-4)
Still leading the USL’s Western Conference, Monarchs SLC have only two wins in their previous five outings. That includes a 2-1 win over the Toros at H-E-B Park. Former Dynamo man Chandler Hoffman is in third for the USL’s Golden Boot with 14 tallies this season.
They will host the Toros on Friday at Rio Tinto Stadium. Playing at their home field, Monarchs SLC has a record of 10-0-1.
The Dirty Details:
Friday 8/25 at Rio Tinto Stadium.
Watch it live at 8 PM Central HERE.