A second half penalty kick was the lone and deciding goal as the Rio Grande Valley FC Toros spoiled the 2017 USL home opener for OKC Energy FC Saturday night at Taft Stadium.
Following a turnover in the OKC defensive third by Energy FC’s Alejandro Covarrubias in the 66th minute, RGV’s Camilo Monroy was fouled in the OKC box by Energy FC defender Coady Andrews. Ruben Luna took the penalty kick for the Toros and booted it past diving OKC keeper Cody Laurendi for what would be the game winner for RGV.
OKC had been awarded a penalty kick in the 55th minute, when Alex Dixon was hauled down in the RGV box by Kai Greene. On the ensuing kick by OKC midfielder Jose Barril, Toros keeper Calle Brown slid to the left side of the net, just enough to deny Barril’s attempt.
Three red cards were issued in the match, two of which went to Energy FC players. Barril was booked in the 90th minute, giving him two red cards in two starts thus far in 2017. As a result of the booking, Barril will be suspended for OKC’s next match on April 11, his second suspension of the season.
RGV’s Victor Garza was sent off following a dangerous tackle on OKC’s Coy Craft, and Energy FC’s Richard Dixon took a red card when he received his second yellow card of the match for a risky tackle in the 75th minute. A total of seven cards were dolled out on the night.
With the loss, Energy FC moved to 0-2-1 on the 2017 season, while Rio Grande Valley picked up its first win of the year, improving to 1-2-0.
Energy FC’s next match is a 7:30 p.m. CDT start Tuesday, April 11, when the club welcomes Sacramento Republic FC to Taft Stadium.