Orange County SC wrapped up the 2019 USL Championship regular season on a good note, defeating nine-man Fresno FC 2-0 at Orange County Great Park on Saturday.
Orange County came into the game knowing they could not catch Real Monarchs to be the No. 4 seed in the West, as they won earlier on Saturday, and would therefore not host their upcoming playoff game.
In the 36th minute, it looked like OCSC would take the lead as Michael Seaton’s header was bound for goal but it was saved by defender Mickey Daly on the line.
But Fresno went down to 10 men in the 42nd minute, with Qudus Lawal picking up his second yellow card of the match. And Orange County took the lead before halftime, Harry Forrester heading in the goal before the near post off a corner kick to make it 1-0 with a man advantage heading into the break.
Fresno nearly tied up the game in the 73rd minute, as a poor backpass from Danny Crisostomo led to a gilt-edged chance for the visitors, but Frederik Due stepped up to make an emergency stop to maintain the lead for Orange County.
Fresno’s nightmare got worse in the 87th minute, as defender Ramon Martin Del Campo was sent off for handling the ball on the line, and Aodhan Quinn scored from the spot to make it 2-0.
The game was rather gritty and both teams had opportunities, but the combination of Fresno’s red cards and Orange County making the most of their chances means OCSC wrap up the No. 5 seed in the Western Conference, and will play Real Monarchs in Utah next weekend. The teams just played each other less than two weeks ago, with Monarchs winning at home, but OCSC will have a chance to atone for that loss, and extend their season, in the playoffs next week. Should be a good one!
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