Finding Confidence in Cali
Last week could have been a huge nightmare for RGVFC. They were hitting the road for two matches, where they hadn’t won yet this season, and would face a dangerous LA Galaxy II side and Western Conference power Orange County SC. Two losses would have been a big blow to the young team, but instead, they return to the Valley with four points.
Midweek, they played well in a 1-1 draw against Los Dos. Chuy Enriquez scored the lone Toros goal in the 51st minute before the club conceded in the 77th. RGVFC fired off 17 total shots in the match and help the ninth-highest scoring team in the USL to one goal.
It was on Saturday that the club notched a massive upset win. Still searching for their first road victory of the season and playing Orange County SC on an eight-match unbeaten streak, the Toros went into Irvine and took all three points. Matias Zaldivar made an amazing solo run into the area to curl in the first goal of the match. Then, late in the first half, Carlos Small snuck a free kick past OC keeper Andre Rawls. Tyler Deric pitched a shutout, making seven saves on the night. Orange County has only lost seven times on the season, twice to RGVFC.
Dynamo Theory’s Man of the Matches Tyler Deric: Any Dynamo fan will not be surprised by what they saw from Deric on Saturday. Always ready and able to make a massive save, the goalkeeper stopped seven shots in the clean sheet vs. Orange County. He was named to the USL Team of the Week and is nominated for the USL Save of the Week(VOTE HERE).
Todd Wharton: Against Los Dos, Wharton played one of his best games to date. He had 96 touches, 90% on 70 passes, and five tackles. He had five key passes, including one to set up Chuy’s goal. He came off the bench vs. OC and tallied a key pass in less than a half of work.
Carlos Small: The striker continues to make a name for himself. He tucked in a free kick to double the Toros’ lead vs. OC.
Matias Zaldivar on the victory over OC:
“It’s very important to add a road win and have hopes for the playoffs.”
The Good Guys: Rio Grande Valley FC Toros (4-9-12)
What a huge week for the Toros. They took four points from two tough matches out West. On the trip, we saw the debut of David Cabrera, another one of Houston Dynamo head coach Wilmer Cabrera’s sons.
We also got the chance to see a prime Tyler Deric outing on Saturday. The Dynamo loanee kept out seven shots in their shutout win over Orange County.
Now, the club will look to close out the month strong. They face their bitter rivals tonight and it will be another good test for this young team.
The Bad Guys: San Antonio FC (9-9-7)
You obviously can’t preview this match without discussing the trio of former Toros now with their in-state rival. Charlie Ward has been a star for San Antonio since arriving midseason and Jose Escalante and Kyle Murphy both provide danger in the attack. The trio will definitely be motivated to play well at their old home, H-E-B Park.
The club as a whole will need to be locked in as they travel south. After finishing 2nd in the Western Conference last season, San Antonio is currently below the red line. They have lost four straight matches and are stuck in the middle of a tight race for the final spots in the postseason.
The Dirty Details
Who: RGVFC vs. San Antonio FC
When: TONIGHT, 7 PM, CDT
Where: H-E-B Park