Photo courtesy of Darren Abate / San Antonio FC
SAN ANTONIO – As San Antonio FC challenges for the top spot in the Western Conference, the club knows it will need more offensive-driven performances such as Saturday’s 3-1 victory against Tulsa Roughnecks FC.
SAFC rediscovered its attack, with Kris Tyrpak leading the way with a brace, to thrill a crowd of 7,376 at Toyota Field. It was the most goals the team has produced since its 4-0 win against the Portland Timbers 2 on April 28.
“It’s a relief,” Tyrpak said. “Not only has it been a while for me, but it’s been a while for the team. Starting off strong like that in the first four minutes of the game and getting a goal really got our momentum going.”
Tyrpak provided a 33rd-minute volley that ultimately served as the winner, and it was his fourth-minute, lying-down finish that set the tone early.
“It put us on the front foot, and that’s where we wanted to be,” SAFC Head Coach Darren Powell said.
As promising as the offensive contributions were, including a key Devin Vega strike midway through the second half, San Antonio was on thin ice against the Roughnecks who had ample chances to cut into the deficit or perhaps come away with a road point.
“There were some defensive breakdowns that we’ll address with the team to make everyone better, and hopefully keep improving this team,” Powell said. “We work with good application every day. The players’ attitudes are fantastic, but I still think we have some improving to do. I think our group of players is committed to doing it, and that’s what they want to do.”
If there was one defensive element to celebrate Saturday, it was a milestone occasion for Cyrpian Hedrick. Hedrick competed in his 100th USL match, and it was a welcome sight for a player who injured his knee in his SAFC debut and worked his way back into the fray.
“He’s a pro. What you get with Cyprian is good leadership, somebody who cares, shows commitment, and wants to do well every day,” Powell said.
“It’s a good feeling to be back out there with the guys,” Hedrick said. “Seems like yesterday we were in preseason doing all these things, and unfortunately I got hurt. It’s been a long process, but I worked my way back and I’m just really happy we got the victory today.”