It’s Been A Long...Long Time Coming
If you said the Toros would come away from Saturday’s match with a win, people would’ve be skeptical. If you went a step further and said they would shut out Reno, you would’ve been laughed at. However, both things happened, with RGVFC topping Reno 1868 FC, 1-0. Reno had last been shut out on August 2nd.
Sitting two goals shy of the most ever in a USL season, Reno 1868 could not beat Calle Brown on Saturday. More surprisingly, RGVFC actually doubled the visitor’s shots, 19-7, with an advantage in shots on target 7-3. Kyle Murphy led the attack and narrowly missed finding the net on a couple of occasions. His biggest contribution would be getting taken down by the Reno keeper in the area, which set up a Toros’ penalty. Justin Bilyeu confidently stepped up and put it home.
Reno would play the final 10+ minutes down a man after USL co-Golden Boot leader Dane Kelly made significant contact with Calle Brown. Despite not being able to add to their lead, RGVFC held on for a big win against a top club in the Western Conference.
Dynamo Theory’s Man of the Match Justin Bilyeu: For his first Toros goal, Bilyeu perfectly struck a penalty kick past the keeper in the first half. He received USL Team of the Week recognition for his efforts.
Kyle Murphy: The former Clemson standout has performed consistently down the stretch for the Toros. He put four shots on goal against Reno and drew the penalty that Bilyeu converted.
Calle Brown: Strong outing from the Houston Dynamo shot stopper. Brown made four saves on all four shots that he faced. He also was fouled by Dane Kelly, which ended in a red card for the striker. Calle was an honorable mention for the USL Team of the Week.
Kevin Garcia on the importance of Saturday’s win:
“It was a well deserved win after a collective group effort to beat out a prolific Reno team. The season has had its ups and downs, but we have a talented group capable of beating anyone in the league. Its nice to see the team’s hard work come to fruition with a shutout win over a top team in the West.”
The Good Guys: Rio Grande Valley FC Toros (8-13-7)
It felt good to watch the club get off their winless run over the weekend. Similar to the week before, there was a strong Dynamo contingent present, with Kevin Garcia, Jose Escalante, Joseph Holland, Taylor Hunter, and Calle Brown all in action. Each player had a strong performance. Holland was noteworthy, completing 95% of his 44 passes.
Kyle Murphy has really shown the ability to positively affect a match from the forward position. He works hard and puts himself in good spots to make an impact, as you saw with his shots on target and foul drawn in the area.
The Toros will look to play spoiler again this weekend against their rivals. While the playoffs are a miracle away from being out of reach, a strong finish to the season will give the club and manager Junior Gonzalez a boost for next year.
The Bad Guys: San Antonio FC (14-3-10)
San Antonio will not be in a very welcome mood on Saturday. They were shellacked 5-2 by Swope Park Rangers last weekend and they’re in the midst of a playoff position battle.
They currently sit second, but only three points ahead of Reno. After suffering their first loss in September, they will look to make it two straight wins over RGVFC. They topped the Toros 1-0 on opening night and the club’s meet again after this matchup to close out the season. It will be a battle for pride for the Toros and playoff positioning for SAFC.
The Dirty Details
9/23 at Toyota Field
Watch it live HERE at 7:30pm CDT.