LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – Vancouver Whitecaps FC edged United Soccer League expansion side Las Vegas Lights FC 3-2 on Saturday night in a hotly-contested preseason match at Cashman Field.
Cristian Techera opened the scoring for Vancouver 13 minutes in, cooling chipping Lights FC goalkeeper Angel Alvarez after some fine work on the right flank by Nicolas Mezquida and Kei Kamara.
Whitecaps FC doubled their lead on a quick counter-attack in the 18th minute, as Alphonso Davies went on a magnificent run that started in his own box and ended with a low shot from close range.
The match reached a boiling point in the 57th minute as Lights FC defender Marcelo Alatorre received a red card for a foul on Davies. A shoving match ensued on the pitch as well as on the sideline, as Whitecaps FC assistant coach Martyn Pert was sent to the stands along with Lights FC head coach José Luis Sanchéz Solá.
The altercation seemed to inject some life into the home team.
Juan Calderon scored the first two goals in Lights FC history with a 66th-minute free kick and 68th-minute penalty kick, drawing the score level. But Whitecaps FC regained their lead on a penalty of their own in the 74th minute, as Kamara scored the eventual winner with a neat finish into the bottom left hand corner.
The ‘Caps continue their preseason schedule on Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m. PT against MLS newcomers Los Angeles Football Club. Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson split his squad for this weekend’s fixtures, sending half the team directly to Los Angeles for Sunday’s match.
Whitecaps FC kick off the 2018 MLS regular season at BC Place on Sunday, March 4, at home to Montreal Impact.
13′ – VAN – Cristian Techera (Nicolas Mezquida)
18′ – VAN – Alphonso Davies
66′ – LVL – Juan Calderon
68′ – LVL – Juan Calderon (penalty kick)
74′ – VAN – Kei Kamara (penalty kick)
54′ – LVL – Joel Huiqui,
65′ – VAN – Kendall Waston
86′ – LVL – Angel Alvarez
58′ – LVL – Marcelo Alatorre
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
1.Stefan Marinovic; 15.Sean Franklin* (27.Lucas Stauffer^ 69′), 4.Kendall Waston ©, 26.Tim Parker (14.David Edgar* 80′), 17.Marcel de Jong; 6.Efrain Juárez, 31.Russell Teibert (42.David Norman Jr. 85′), 11.Nicolas Mezquida (54.Simon Colyn# 88′); 13.Cristian Techera, 23.Kei Kamara, 67.Alphonso Davies
*Training camp invitee
^Unsigned SuperDraft selection
# Whitecaps FC Residency player
Las Vegas Lights FC
12.Angel Alvarez; 4.Joel Huiqui, 16.Marcelo Alatorre, 16.Miguel Garduno; 14.Alex Mendoza, 26.Julian Portugal, 44.Daigo Kobayashi (66.Bryan de la Fuente 53′), 15.Carlos Alvarez; 37.Samuel Ochoa (7.Adolfo Guzman 80′), 23.Gerardo Lugo (10.Juan Jose Calderon 61′), 8.Isaac Diaz