Mississippi Brilla FC (1-0-0) kicked off the 2019 season in front of a large opening day crowd, defeating Texas United 2-0.
Starting the match off with several strong surges towards the Texas United goal, Brilla FC was unable to take advantage of two early corner kick opportunities.
However, a strong effort by the Brilla defense and goalkeeper Alex Iglesias kept Texas United off the scoreboard.
Two caution cards were issued in the first half, one to Mississippi Brilla FC’s Duncan Storey in the 33rd minute and Texas United’s Dominique Kosseh in the 44th minute.
The second half for Brilla proved monumental as both goals were scored after half time.
After a red card was shown to Texas United’s Jordan Ybara in the 58th minute, Arturo Astorga took full advantage of being a man up and put the ball in the back of the net, giving Mississippi Brilla FC their first goal of the season and the lead.
Sondre Olsen padded the lead with a goal in the 76th minute with an assist from Christian Sosnowski.
Goalkeeper Alex Iglesias claimed the clean sheet, helping his own cause with a handful of athletic saves on the evening.
Head coach Luke Sanford said his team did a good job of overcoming first-game jitters, but starting off the season with a win allowed his team to grow.
“We’ve got to improve on a few things heading into Saturday’s game,” Sanford said, “but I think what we have to work on is pretty simple stuff these guys can solve.”
Sanford said during the first week of practice he’s noticed the spirit of this year’s team is something that will benefit in their efforts on the pitch.
“If a team only brings talent to the table, you’re simply not going to win enough games,” Sanford said. “I think we have enough quality talent, but I think what we have is cohesion and camaraderie that you can see. And they’ve only known each other for a week.”
He noted the team’s intelligence and savvy that has already played to their advantage. “Starting so quickly, the players have had to solve problems on their own.”
He pointed out that the passion for their team is what will set them apart. “These guys are willing to fight for each other, and it can only grow.
Mississippi Brilla FC will host Texas United again on Saturday, May 18 at Arrow Field on the campus of Clinton High School. Tickets are $5, and kick off is slated for 7:00 P.M.