FC Tucson cruised past Orlando City B and earned a 3-1 win in the Arizona side’s first game back at Kino Sports Complex after a lengthy road trip.
Orlando City B started the game well, with new signing Lucas Ontivero threatening the Tucson goal on two occasions. But a swift counter attack from FC Tucson erased the visitors’ early pressure when Guillermo Delgado polished off a break in the 36th minute.
The hosts quickly doubled their advantage six minutes later through Jordan Jones, who rounded the Orlando goalkeeper and finished under pressure to give FC Tucson a 2-0 lead heading into halftime.
Erik Virgen added a splendid third goal for Tucson after the break with a precise strike from the edge of the box. Leonardo Da Silva Simas would pull one goal back for OCB, but Tucson were never really troubled in the final few minutes of the match and took home all three points.
The win keeps FC Tucson very much alive in the race for 4th place. They’re now just four points adrift of the playoff line and have the advantage of playing six of their final seven matches at home in the Arizona desert.
Forward Madison FC grabbed a crucial 1-0 win over Richmond Kickers on Saturday night to move above the playoff line in the League One table, thanks to a first-ever League One goal for Christian Díaz.
The chances were few and far between for both sides in the first half. The Kickers thought they had found the opener through Maxi Rodriguez just before halftime, but the goal was called offside. In front of 4,517 fans at Breese Stevens Field, Forward Madison began to pile on the pressure after the break. Josiel Nuñez forced a save out of Richmond goalkeeper Akira Fitzgerald in the 52nd minute, with efforts from Don Smart and Eric Leonard both narrowly missing just moments later.
The Flamingos finally found the breakthrough in the 73rd minute when Paulo Júnior got behind the Kickers’ backline and squared it for an onrushing Christian Díaz, who polished off the move in style to open his USL League One scoring account. Madison would hang on to the 1-0 advantage until the final whistle and earn a measure of revenge on Richmond, who beat them by the same scoreline a few weeks prior.
The result is a huge boost for Forward Madison in its push for the playoffs among a crowded middle of the pack in the League One standings. They’ll look to build off the win as they host Greenville Triumph and South Georgia Tormenta FC to round out a three-game homestand. Richmond’s postseason chances were dealt a blow with the loss, as the Kickers now sit 10 points off the playoff places with eight games remaining.