Las Vegas, NV- The Las Vegas Lights FC continued their preseason preparation for the upcoming 2019 USL Championship season, once again impressing with their performance against a visiting Major League Soccer side.
The Lights capped off a first half that saw them applying constant pressure on the Rapids defense with a beautiful strike by central midfielder Christhian Hernandez at the 44th minute. Hernandez’s goal was wisely set up by quick free kick taken by Irvin Parra.
However, just as quick, the Rapids equalized with a goal off the left foot of first half substitute Dillon Serna, which found the corner of the Vegas goal, leaving the score tied at one goal a piece after forty five minutes of play.
Early in the second half, Vegas was lucky to not be behind a goal early; as Kellyn Acosta had a golden opportunity right at the doorstep inside the Lights’ six-yard box, but luckily for the Lights, his shot from the doorstep was off target. At the 54th minute, Torres brought the Lights FC faithful to their feet with a beautiful attempt at goal that was flicked off his head just past the outstretched hands of a diving Andre Rawls, who got the start after regular starting goalkeeper Tim Howard was a late scratch.
Midfielder Irving Mezquida put the Rapids ahead by a score of 2-1 when he found the back of the net at the 60th minute.
Las Vegas head coach Eric Wynalda would respond by making his first change of the game, sending in reserve Matt Thomas to replace Bryan de la Fuente following the Rapids’ second goal of the match.
The Lights would respond with an equalizer on a powerful and perfectly placed strike off the head off Christian Torres, who was set up beautifully by Hernandez.
Wynalda’s other substitutions would come on following Vegas’ equalizer as the Lights’ skipper elected to bring on Bryan Arguez, Edwin Rivas, Jesus Quintero and Tabort Etaka Preston. Preston nearly paid instant dividends, as he electrified the faithful fans in the stands when his shot from just outside the 18-yard box rang off the post, nearly bringing the Lights the late lead in dramatic fashion.
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Don’t forget Lights FC return to action with their Regular season home opener against the Austin Bold at Cashman Field on Saturday, March 9th at 7:00 pm.
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