Phoenix Rising FC forward Jason Johnson celebrates his game winning goal in the 34th minute of Phoenix Rising FC's 2-0 win over RGVFC. (Michael Rincon/PHXRisingFC.com)
PHOENIX (October 7, 2017) — Phoenix Rising FC won for a second consecutive time in a 2-0 shutout over Rio Grande Valley FC. It was also the second consecutive forward Jason Johnson scored the game-winner.
Neither team got on the board in the first half hour of the match, but Phoenix Rising (16-8-7) had the more dangerous chances for the first 30 minutes. Then, in the 34th minute, Johnson broke the scoreless stalemate.
After taking a pass from Gladson Awako, Johnson dribbled around two Rio Grande Valley defenders in the box before smashing the ball with his left foot past the goalkeeper for his 13th goal of the season. He now needs one more goal to match the franchise record for goals in a season, set by Long Tan in 2015.
Didier Drogba helped to add insurance in the 75th minute. The club’s captain curled a challenging shot down and to the goalkeeper’s left. It appeared the Toros’ goalkeeper made the save, but the ball trickled out of his grasp and rolled slowly across the goal line and into the net. The tally was technically ruled an own goal by the official statistician.
The Toros (9-14-8) came close to finding the back of the net on two separate occasions near the end of the match. In the 78th minute, Rio Grande Valley’s Kyle Murphy struck a close-range free kick that smashed the crossbar before being cleared.
Then in stoppage time, the Toros’ Todd Wharton had space to try and curl a shot inside the far left post. But Rising FC goalkeeper Josh Cohen made a diving stop to keep the clean sheet, his eighth of the season.
Phoenix Rising FC closes out its regular season on Saturday, October 14, against Portland TImbers 2 at the Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex. The match will kickoff 7:30 p.m.
PHOENIX RISING FC 2-0 RIO GRANDE VALLEY FC TOROS
PHX: 34’, 14-Jason Johnson (28-Gladson Awako)
PHX: 75’, 24-Calle Brown (OG)
Disciplinary Summary: n/a
PRFC Starting XI: 18-Josh Cohen; 25-Victor Vasquez, 5-Peter Ramage, 33-Jordan Stewart, 15-Jordan Gibbons; 8-Matt Watson, 16-Sam Hamilton, 19-Amadou Dia (76’, 17-Alessandro Riggi), 28-Gladson Awako (64’, 29-Shaun Wright-Phillips), 14-Jason Johnson; 11-Didier Drogba (82’, 7-Chris Cortez)
Substitutions Not Used: 1-Carl Woszczynski, 3-Kody Wakasa, 24-AJ Gray, 4-Blair Gavin