On June 3, 2023, at Pinole Valley High School, league-leaders Real San Jose took on Bay Area Force in a captivating showdown of National Soccer League's (NSL) Pacific Conference. Coming into the match, Real San Jose held an impressive record of 5 wins, 1 draw, and 0 losses, placing them firmly at the top of the table.
The starting lineup for Real San Jose was: Goalkeeper Charly Fuentes; Defenders Jacob Muniz, Andy Canepa, Teddy Rexing, Juan Tribin; Midfielders Cristian Cruz, Carlos Munoz, Yasid Alvarado, Hyago Galdino, Nico Mendez; and Striker Lluis Dolade. Substitutes on hand included Juan Velzaques, Carlos Tabora, Darnel Alvarado, Angel Moreno, Denis Sorto, and Hector Herrera.
Real San Jose quickly signaled their intentions with a goal from Lluis Dolade in the 20th minute, assisted by Nico Mendez. They doubled their lead within just four minutes as Jacob Muniz hammered home a 30-yard free-kick blast. The first half saw Real San Jose dominating possession by keeping the ball mostly on the ground, in contrast to Bay Area Force's approach of sending numerous high balls forward.
As the second half began, Bay Area Force pushed forward with enthusiasm, eventually getting on the scoreboard thanks to Oscar Lopez in the 60th minute. The goal sparked the game into a frantic pace, and despite a temporary defensive focus, Real San Jose ultimately responded by kicking into another gear. Their efforts paid off with two more goals from Dolade in the 80th minute (assisted by Yasid Alvarado) and Darnel Alvarado in the 87th minute to cement their victory.
The turning points in the game were Bay Area Force's goal in the 60th minute, which kicked off a more aggressive tempo, and Dolade's crucial 80th-minute goal that helped secure the win for Real San Jose. RSJ's success now puts them in an even stronger position in the NSL Pacific Conference, boasting a formidable record of 6 wins, 1 draw, and 0 losses with an astounding 36 goals scored and only 5 conceded.
RSJ Coach Dave Gold reflected on the performance, saying, "Hard game well fought by both teams 9 yellow cards and 2 Red cards says a lot!!!! But class came through in the for a comfortable WIN."
With only 2 games remaining in the regular season, Real San Jose will face off against Yemen United CA on June 10 at PAL Stadium, 7:00 PM. This clash against similarly undefeated Yemen could very well determine who takes home the title, making it a must-watch for all soccer enthusiasts.
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