PHOENIX – Solomon Asante scored twice as Phoenix Rising FC cruised to a 3-0 victory against USL Championship debutant Oakland Roots SC on Saturday night at the Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex at Wild Horse Pass.
The hosts looked to get out to a fast start, and an error by Roots SC helped Phoenix take the lead in the 10th minute as an errant pass in Oakland’s defensive third set up a chance for Rufat Dadashov at the top-right edge of the penalty area. The Azerbaijani striker’s well-hit shot was parried by Roots SC goalkeeper Zeus De La Paz, but Solomon Asante was there to clean up the rebound and finish into the right corner.
Oakland’s Jeremy Bokila had a chance to answer 10 minutes later as he claimed a pass into the penalty area and quickly turned to find space, only to shoot wide of the left post. Dadashov had a pair of chances before halftime to add to Phoenix’s lead, but three minutes into the second half Santi Moar struck as a long ball from the back by James Musa sent the Spaniard into space down the left before he drove into the penalty area and finished low past De La Paz.
Phoenix made it three in the 68th minute as Asante bagged his second, again capitalizing on a defensive mistake as the Ghanaian intercepted a pass by De La Paz just inside the penalty area and finished before Oakland’s goalkeeper could recover. Roots SC tried to find a way back into the contest, and Yohannes Harish fired a shot from 20 yards that was denied, and Phoenix goalkeeper Ben Lundt also had to be sharp with five minutes to go as Oakland’s Danny Flores fired a free kick from the top-left corner of the penalty on target.
Rising FC saw out the remaining minutes, to continue its impressive start to the campaign.
USLChampionship.com Man of the Match
Solomon Asante, Phoenix Rising FC – Asante picked up his first two goals of the season, recorded three shots on goal and two key passes while also going 6 of 7 in duels and completing two dribbles.
PHX – Solomon Asante 10’
PHX – Santi Moar (James Musa) 48’
PHX – Solomon Asante 68’