HERRIMAN, Utah – Milan Iloski converted from the penalty spot deep in second-half stoppage time to lift Real Monarchs SLC to a 3-2 victory against Las Vegas Lights FC on Friday night at Zions Bank Stadium that saw the hosts rally twice from a deficit before going on to claim their third win of the 2021 season.
Looking to rebound from its last outing, Las Vegas almost took an early lead in the eighth minute as Christian Torres fired a shot off the crossbar from 10 yards out, but that was the only clear look either side got until the 20th minute when the Monarchs’ first chance came to Bode Davis, whose low shot from the right side of the penalty area was saved by Las Vegas goalkeeper Alex Rando.
Having hit the woodwork previously, though, Torres put the visitors ahead in the 23rd minute. Lights FC midfielder Eric Duenas began the opportunity, winning possession for Cal Jennings 30 yards from the Monarchs’ goal and Jennings slipped a pass between two defenders for Torres to set up a finish into the left side of the net.
Real hit back on Charlie Wehan’s first professional goal seven minutes before halftime, however, as he ran onto a flick by Aris Briggs near the top of the penalty area and powered a low shot into the bottom-right corner of the net. Wehan joined elder brother Chris Wehan of Orange County SC as the second set of brothers to score in the Championship this season, alongside fellow Monarchs and Orange County siblings Milan and Brian Iloski.
Torres almost put Las Vegas back on top shortly before halftime but was denied from close range by a strong save from Monarchs goalkeeper Jeffrey Dewsnup, while 11 minutes into the second half Jennings was also turned away by the young shot-stopper on a low shot from the right side of the penalty area. In the 61st minute Lights FC regained the lead, though, as Torres got into space on the right side and delivered a low cross that Jennings tapped home from close range.
Julian Vazquez then had a chance to make it a two-goal lead for the visitors five minutes later as Lights FC worked the ball well across the penalty area from right to left only for the finish to go off the outside of the left post and away to safety. That proved costly with 17 minutes to go as a half-cleared cross from the right side by the Monarchs came to Milan Iloski, who sent a low shot back toward goal where it was turned home by Max Mata just outside the six-yard area.
Las Vegas almost went back ahead as the game ticked into stoppage time when Alvaro Quezada created space for a shot from 20 yards that took a deflection that would have wrong-footed Dewsnup but flew over the crossbar and behind for a corner. As the game appeared it would end all square, though, the Monarchs’ Jeizon Ramirez was brought down in the penalty area and Iloski kept his cool from the spot, shooting into the right corner to grab a dramatic victory for the hosts.
USLChampionship.com Man of the Match
Milan Iloski, Real Monarchs SLC – Iloski recorded a goal and assist, including the late game-winner from the penalty spot, while recording six shots and two key passes overall in the Monarchs’ comeback victory.
LV – Christian Torres (Cal Jennings) 23’
SLC – Charlie Wehan (Aris Briggs) 38’
LV – Cal Jennings (Christian Torres) 61’
SLC – Max Mata (Milan Iloski) 73’
SLC – Milan Iloski (Penalty Kick) 90+6’