FRESNO, Calif. - Franck Tayou's 60-yard golazo at the 92nd minute put the nail in the coffin for Sacramento Republic FC, as the Foxes won 2-0 at Chukchansi Park on Saturday to level the Highway 99 Derby series at a game apiece.
Juan Pablo Caffa opened the scoring in the first half, putting away a beautiful back-heel pass from Rony Argueta at the 38th minute. The goal was Caffa's fourth of the season, and the most emotional yet, as the Argentina captain dedicated his performance to the brother of his childhood best friend, who was killed earlier this week.
Photo by Kiel Maddox / Fresno FC
CJ Cochran recorded his first clean-sheet performance since joining Fresno FC, collecting five saves between the posts. The Foxes' back line kept Republic's attack off balance as Zachary Ellis-Hayden and Alex Cooper kept Villyan Bijev and Elliott Hord - the two former Fresnans- both silent for the 90 minutes.
Tayou's wondergoal made up for his miss just minutes earlier, as he had a 1-v-1 against the keeper from inside the box, but his shot missed wide left.
It was a physical battle in downtown Fresno, with a total of seven yellow cards - five to Fresno FC and two to Sacramento Republic FC.
The Foxes move to 5W-7L-7D for ninth place in the Western Conference at 22 points to remain in the playoff hunt, just two points behind eighth-place Colorado Springs. Fresno has another chance to climb up the table next week as they visit seventh-place Portland Timbers 2 on Sunday, July 8. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m.
Caffa found the back of the net at the 38th minute to help guide the Foxes to victory in an emotional night for him.