LAS VEGAS – Aodhan Quinn recorded three assists while Santi Moar scored twice as Phoenix Rising FC took a rollicking 6-3 victory against Las Vegas Lights FC on Saturday afternoon at Cashman Field in a game that also saw Cal Jennings score a hat trick for the hosts.
Looking to bounce back from a midweek loss, Phoenix wasted little time in opening the scoring as after a ball from the right came through the penalty area to Quinn on the left, the attacking midfielder centered for David Egbo, who took one touch to control and then fired a shot that deflected off a defender and into the right corner of the net.
Quinn added his second assist of the night – and his 40th regular-season assist in the Championship – in the 16th minute as he threaded a pass through the Las Vegas back line for Joey Calistri as he broke up the right channel before holding off a defender and finishing low to the right corner. A minute later Rising FC added a third as Moar cut in from the left past a pair of defenders and ripped a low shot to the right corner for his 15th goal of the season.
A minute on from Moar’s goal, Lights FC responded to quickly make it a two-goal margin again when Danny took on his man on the left and created enough space to deliver for Jennings to tap in from close range in the center of the six-yard area. Jennings added his second of the game for the hosts four minutes before halftime as Bruce El Mesmari moved forward and got past two defenders before appearing to get the ball caught under his feet. The Mexico youth international recovered to slip a pass to his left where Jennings finished from 14 yards.
Lights FC almost leveled the score before halftime as in the 44th minute Frank Daroma delivered a cross from the right that Trejo met on the volley only to see his effort hit the right post and be cleared to safety by the Phoenix defense.
Seven minutes into the second half, however, Quinn got his hat trick of assists as he received a short, headed pass on the left side near the top corner of the penalty area and delivered a cross that Darnell King headed into the right corner of the net to give Phoenix some breathing room. Lights FC had an opportunity to pull close again three minutes later as a misjudgment by goalkeeper Lalo Delgado gave Jennings a chance from a very narrow angle on the right that he sent across the face of the goal, where Trejo retrieved possession but was turned away by Delgado as he recovered back to the left post
With 20 minutes to go, however, Moar notched his second goal of the night when Rando was unable to cleanly handle a shot from the top of the penalty area and the ball slid through and found the right side of the net to make it a three-goal lead for Rising FC once again.
Jennings persisted for Las Vegas, and with 12 minutes to go sent a header off a corner kick from the left by Trejo off the right post with a flicked header at the near post. His hat trick arrived in the 83rd minute, however, when a Rising FC defender misplayed a low cross from the left by Trejo that Jennings seized on to shoot into the right side of the net. The second-year-pro became the sixth player in the Championship’s history to record a hat trick in a losing cause.
Phoenix responded two minutes later when Arturo Rodriguez tracked down a ball sent up the right side and then drifted back and in toward his help before playing a through-ball to Luis Seijas as he arrived late in the penalty area. The midfielder controlled and dispatched into the left corner of the net, closing out the win for the visitors.
USLChampionship.com Man of the Match
Aodhan Quinn, Phoenix Rising FC – Quinn became the 21st player in the Championship’s history and second in Phoenix’s to record three assists in one game and finished the contest with 12 key passes while completing 31 of 40 passes overall
PHX – David Egbo (Aodhan Quinn) 4’
PHX – Joey Calistri (Aodhan Quinn) 16’
PHX – Santi Moar 17’
LV – Cal Jennings (Danny Trejo) 18’
LV – Cal Jennings (Bruce El Mesmari) 41’
PHX – Darnell King (Aodhan Quinn) 52’
PHX – Santi Moar 70’
LV – Cal Jennings 83’
PHX – Luis Seijas (Arturo Rodriguez) 85