IRVINE, Calif. – With a large contingent of travelling support on hand, Phoenix Rising FC claimed its first silverware in club history on Saturday night as it raised the Western Conference Championship in the 2018 USL Cup Playoffs with a 2-1 victory against hosts Orange County SC, which welcomed a sellout crowd of 5,189 fans to Champions Soccer Stadium.
The vocal support of both sets of fans provided an intense atmosphere for the two sides, both of which had never previously reached this stage of the postseason. Goals by Chris Cortez – whose tally after 66 seconds ranked as the fastest in USL Cup Playoffs history – and Didier Drogba sent the side on to face Louisville City FC for the 2018 USL Cup.
Here are some of the sights and sounds from the Western Conference Final in Southern California.
Phoenix Rising FC earned its first silverware in club history as a large group of travelling support provided a memorable backdrop to the club's 2-1 victory against Orange County SC before a sellout crowd of 5,189 fans at Champions Soccer Stadium in Irvine, Calif.
Congrats to @orangecountysc on hosting an incredible Western Coast Final. Worthy Champions in my eyes, from management staff to players, they were a joy to watch this season. And to my old mate @Rchap04... geez it’s been an honour to share a pitch with u!!— Peter Ramage (@peterramage83) November 4, 2018
Not only @PHXRisingFC has super fans. Say to the Gist family, here for #OCvPHX. They are @orangecountysc season ticket holders. Ledger, who is seven years old, trains six days a week and wants to play in the 2026 World Cup. "There is no reason not to come here," they said. pic.twitter.com/rZcuaYuYxh— Ricardo Ávila (@TheRicardoAvila) November 4, 2018
Thanks be to God , with you everything is #POSSIBLE and to everyone who believe in this family @PHXRisingFC , players, technical team(@RickSchantz1 ) , management and board of directors, supporters, sympathizers and former coach. @guerrierblanc of @AlAhly @AlAhlyEnglish pic.twitter.com/8xpHqRWcjY— solomon (@Asante208) November 4, 2018