SAN ANTONIO – After losing in frustrating fashion last weekend, Darren Powell knew his would need to start strong and sustain it for 90-plus minutes. Friday showed Powell that SAFC is up for the challenge.
Three first-half goals and a stellar defensive performance lifted San Antonio FC to a 3-0 win over the Tacoma Defiance (2-7-0) in front of 6,742 fans at Toyota Field.
The win saw SAFC win their third straight at home and earn their second clean sheet of the season.
“We need to come out with that energy from the first whistle, which we did last week in Salt Lake City as well,” SAFC Head Coach Darren Powell said. “Now it’s a matter of keeping that up as long as possible both at home and away, and I think our players can play with that energy for the whole game and find success.”
San Antonio got on the scoreboard early on as Bradford Jamieson IV slotted the ball home, putting SAFC up 1-0 just eight minutes into the match. SAFC added to their lead just 11 minutes later as Jack Barmby beat Tacoma goalkeeper Trey Muse from the top of the box to put the home side up two goals.
Barmby added another goal five minutes later as San Antonio went up 3-0.
Tacoma controlled much of the second half and had several chances to crack the scoreboard but Cardone and San Antonio’s defense came up strong and held on for the clean sheet and the three-goal win.
Here is what went good and bad for SAFC as well as three standout players: Jack Barmby, Bradford Jamieson IV, and Matt Cardone.
- SAFC is starting to pick things up after a slow start. San Antonio has now won three of their last four matches and won three straight at Toyota Field.
- San Antonio’s offense has also been picking it up. In their last three matches, including Friday, SAFC has scored an average of 2.3 goals per match.
- Bradford Jamieson has stayed hot at home on both sides of the ball.
- Matt Cardone came up big once again in the second half, including making three big saves.
- SAFC’s defense has continued to improve as well, posting a clean sheet in two of their last three matches.
- Pascual Eboussi was ejected after getting a straight red card for a hard hit on Tacoma’s Connor Drought. He will miss the next match against New Mexico.
- Powell missed the match for the first time in his coaching career as he was suspended after he was ejected from the match last weekend in Salt Lake.
Three Standout Players:
The English midfielder scored twice in the first half and truly set the tone for SAFC to begin the game. His two goals added to his total, giving him three on the season.
His two goals were skillful ones as he tapped the ball home from the corner of the net and then hit one from the top of the box, out of Muse’s reach.
“It was great for the guys,” Barmby said of the win. “Obviously, the goals were nice and felt good, but we needed to win and that was the biggest thing. We needed to bounce back from last week. We have a little time now to reflect on it but we go again next week in New Mexico.”
Bradford Jamieson IV
The forward continues to light up the scoreboard and got things started scoring wise for San Antonio in the match.
Jamieson scored the first goal of the match, marking his third goal in four matches. After a shaky start, he seems to really be finding his groove and that can only be great news for Darren Powell and SAFC.
The bearded one was stellar in the second half as he made several keys stops to keep Tacoma off the scoreboard. He made two big saves following that red card that sent Eboussi sent off and killed the little momentum that the visiting side had.
The clean sheet is the second of the season for SAFC and Cardone.
“It was a solid game for us from front to back,” SAFC defender Josh Yaro said. “We tend to forget when a clean sheet it’s good defensively, but it takes eleven guys on the field. The guys sitting in front of us make our job easy when they do their job, and I think they did a really good job today by making it tight and compact and coming back when they had to, and as a result, we ended up getting a clean sheet.”
San Antonio FC is now 3-4-1 (10 points) on the season and will return to the pitch on May 5 when they take on New Mexico United (3-1-5) at 6 pm Central Time.