RENO Nev. – On Saturday, Reno 1868 FC hosts southern rival, Las Vegas Lights FC, in a Silver State Cup showdown at Greater Nevada Field.
Reno 1868 FC is coming off of a bye week after earning a point on the road against Tacoma Defiance. The club currently sits at seventh in the USL Western Conference Standings with 17 points.
“The guys needed a little break so it’s good we’re going to be really fresh for this game,” Head Coach Ian Russell said.
During the match against Tacoma Defiance, Reno was down 1-0 until forward Brian Brown found the back of the net off Seth Casiple’s corner kick to tie the game up. Brown is currently Reno’s leading goal scorer with seven goals and also leads the club in assists with four.
Las Vegas Light FC are also coming off of a draw in USL Championship play after a scoreless match against Tulsa Roughnecks FC. Most recently, the club was defeated 5-3 by Orange County FC in the Third Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
“Vegas looks a lot more organized this year,” Russell said. “Eric Wynalda has done a good job with them. They have some good strikers, Ochoa and Parra, and they’re a lot less direct this year.”
This match will be the first time that Reno 1868 FC midfielder, Raul Mendiola, will play against his former club. Mendiola signed with Reno 1868 FC ahead of the 2019 season after being the top goal scorer for the Lights in 2018 with ten goals while also notching four assists.
“Raul was really one of their key players last year and we think he’s got a good chance to get to the next level,” Russell said. “I think Raul is excited for this game and he’s been training really well so I expect a good game from him.”
Saturday's match kicks off at 7:15 p.m. and gates open at 6:15. The first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a Kevin Partida bobblehead.