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Roots Fall in 3-0 Shutout to Las Vegas Lights FC

A strong first half for the Oakland Roots led to a second-half meltdown in the East Bay as visiting Las Vegas Lights FC earned all three points in a 3-0 shutout on March 30 at Pioneer Stadium in Hayward.

Alameda Post - Oakland Roots team photo
Photo Oakland Roots.

The Roots started the match strong, earning prime scoring chances seemingly one after another. This pressure continued for nearly the entire first frame, but Oakland could not convert any of their attacks and headed into the half still deadlocked at 0-0.

As good as the home side looked in the first half, they were lost in the second. Las Vegas opened the scoring just moments after the second-half kickoff when Coleman Gannon struck a ball that deflected off a Roots defender, just escaping the reach of Paul Blanchette and finding space under the crossbar.

Just minutes later, the Lights doubled their lead on a placed shot, this time off the foot of Gaoussou Samake. To put the game away for good, Las Vegas then scored their third of the second half in the 66th minute courtesy of Valentin Noël.

Oakland continued to battle, but the field remained tilted in favor of the Lights for the remainder of the match.

The Roots will return to the East Bay looking for redemption in their next match of the USL Championship when they host visiting Monterey Bay FC on April 6. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Talking with the head coach

After the match, Head Coach Noah Delgado was asked how the wheels came off after they looked strong in the first half. What made the difference?

“It’s difficult to point to one thing,” Delgado said. “Having to make a change at half with Justin (Rasmussen) injured, we had to change some things up and make a couple changes throughout the lineup. We’re going to have to look at the film, but there were some individual mistakes and some collective mistakes. There were chances that we shouldn’t have given up, and some we should have capitalized on. After creating some nice stuff we thought we were pretty good in the first half. We knew the second half was going to be tough. (The Lights) getting that early goal really put us on our heels.”

Delgado also noted that the changes made after Rasmussen’s injury “took us a couple of minutes to adjust to. And it hurt us.”


  • LV: Coleman Gannon 46’
  • LV: Gaoussou Samake 50’
  • LV: Valentin Noël 66’
  • OAK:  Baboucarr Njie 21’ (yellow card)
  • LV: Emrah Klimenta 30’ (yellow card)
  • LV: Coleman Gannon 63’ (yellow card)
  • LV: Valentin Noël 69’ (yellow card)
  • LV: Shawn Smart 76’ (yellow card)
  • LV: Gennaro Michael Nigro 90’+ (yellow card)
Oakland Roots

Lineup: Paul Blanchette, Justin Rasmussen (Miche-Naider Chéry), Niall Logue, Gagi Margvelashvili, Neveal Hackshaw, Daniel Gomez, Memo Diaz, Baboucarr Njie (Ilya Alekseev), Napo Matsoso (Etsgar Cruz), Jeciel Cedeño, Trayvone Reid (Lindo Mfeka)

Unused subs: Irakoze Donasiyano, Bryan Tamacas, Javier Bedolla-Vera, Thomas Camier, Tim Syrel

Line: 13 | Shots On Goal: 4 | Corner Kicks: 4 | Fouls: 17 | Offside: 2

Las Vegas Lights

Lineup: Raiko Arozarena, Fabien Garcia, Emrah Klimenta, Shawn Smart (Maliek Howell), Gaoussou Samake (Gennaro Michael Nigro), Hayden Sargis, Jean-Claude Ngando, Valentin Noël, Coleman Gannon, Riki Alba (Khori Bennett), Solomon Asante (Edison Azcona)

Unused subs: Nicholas Ammeter, All Gue, Alexander Romero

Line: 7 | Shots On Goal: 4 | Corner Kicks: 5 | Fouls: 20 | Offside: 1

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