Phoenix Rising runs out of record win against Las Vegas

Phoenix Rising FC center-back Joey Farrell celebrates after scoring a goal against Las Vegas Lights FC at Wild Horse Pass in Chandler, Arizona on May 22, 2021. (Owain Evans Photo)

CHANDLER, Ariz. – If there was a blueprint on how to beat Phoenix Rising FC, then Las Vegas Lights FC certainly didn’t follow on Saturday night at Wild Horse Pass in PRFC’s 5-1 win.

Rising records in the single game USL championship with a total of 41 shots and 20 hits. Add that to the 18 corners of Phoenix, 55% possession and 82% passing accuracy, and it’s easy to see why PRFC was so dominant that night.

Compare those metrics to Las Vegas’ 10 shots – five of which were on target – and the 74% pass accuracy that Phoenix easily got in the second half alone.

Aside from some sales from Kevon Lambert and Jon Bakero – the latter leading to Vegas’ only goal – Rising was in complete control of the game, especially in the second half. During a half-time team talk from Schantz, the midfield – especially Lambert – fell lower to ease the ball on the wings and support striker Rufat Dadashov.

“If we play with confidence, it’s a very special group of players,” said manager Rick Schantz after the game. “We started very well, that was the idea – to be after them quickly. And then we made some really stupid mistakes and lost a little confidence in the first half.

“But I talked to them in the second half about the need to be smarter. Kevon and Aodhan (Quinn) and Jon picked up the ball in the wrong places against them. I think after that we did a bigger job. “

With Rufat Dadashov’s first goal in the 2021 season, which was scored in less than 120 seconds after a cross from Noah Billingsley, Rising had given his first starting shot again.

A look at Rufat Dadashov’s first goal of the year for #PRFC.

1-0 | #PHXvLV

– Jake Anderson (@ jwa1994) May 23, 2021

Before the slight tactical adjustment in midfield, the aforementioned sales resulted in Las Vegas only having chances that night.

A big save from PRFC goalkeeper Andre Rawls, who returned to the starting XI after the last two games with a groin injury, kept Phoenix in the lead until the 22nd minute. That save marked the first shot on goal Rising had conceded in the first half of a game this season.

Just before the whistle at halftime, Rising finally took the lead in the 39th minute with a header from Joey Farrell from a corner. The center-back and former college striker adds to his record as the best defender of all time in the club’s history.

Joey Farrell: 1 start 1 goal

The center-back adds to his record as the highest-scoring defender in #PRFC history.

2-1 | #PHXvLV

– Jake Anderson (@ jwa1994) May 23, 2021

“We knew we had to raise our level. We played well, ”said Farrell. “We made a few mistakes in the first half. But we told ourselves to cut out the mistakes, move the ball fast, and let them do the work.

“The key in the second half that made it easier for us was that we held the ball much better. We cut out the sloppy sales and forced them to defend deep in their half and then we were able to defend offensively from there and keep them in their own half a lot. “

Phoenix got off to a thunderous start in the second half that put the game in bed for hours. Rising scored three goals in the first 18 minutes of the second 45-minute frame.

PRFC striker Santi Moar resumed his MVP form. The Spaniard scored his fourth goal in as many games with a volley shot into the side netting six minutes into the second half to give his team a 3-1 advantage.

A look at Santi Moar’s 4th goal in as many games and the # USL championship campaign in 2021.

5-1 | #PHXvLV

– Jake Anderson (@ jwa1994) May 23, 2021

Four minutes later, Dadashov took his braces and scored the 4-1. He scored a goal that was virtually identical to his first.

Rufat Dadashov’s braces, which are almost identical to his first but opposite foot and the opposite side of the pitch.

5-1 | #PHXvLV

– Jake Anderson (@ jwa1994) May 23, 2021

The final goal of the night came 63 minutes after the penalty spot, after left-back Ryan Flood was brought into the box. Captain Solomon Asante stepped forward and converted the free kick to bring the goal line to 5-1.


Goalkeeper Ben Lundt flew to Cincinnati so that his wife wouldn’t have to drive across the country alone, Schantz said. The manager informed the German shot stopper that he would start Rawls in the network anyway and was looking forward to the training competition between the two.

In addition, Schantz said that Darnell King came on at halftime at halftime for Billingsley because the Kiwi had “a small groin problem”.


Phoenix Rising will face Sacramento Republic FC on May 29th.

Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 pm and will be streamed live on and the Arizona Sports app.

Follow @ jwa1994

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