San Antonio FC (22-4-5, 70 points) secured the top Seed in the USL Championship West with a 1-0 victory over Sacramento Republic (14-7-9, 49 points) on Saturday night at Toyota Field. With the result San Antonio FC will have home field advantage throughout the Western Playoffs. SAFC can also still clinch home field advantage for the USL Cup Final, should they advance that far. They lead Louisville City FC, the current first place team in the Eastern Conference, by seven points in that chase. There are three matches remaining in SAFC's regular season and four more points will ensure that SAFC will not play a single road game in the Playoffs.
It is the first time ever that San Antonio FC has earned the top seed.
San Antonio FC will have a first round bye thanks to earning the top seed, but they already know when their first playoff game will occur. The match is set for Friday October 28th at 7:30pm, opponent TBD.
The result was payback for one of San Antonio's five losses on the season. The 2022 US Open Cup Runner's Up defeated SAFC in Sacramento by the same 1-0 score back in June. San Antonio also concluded the month of September unbeaten, winning four games and drawing once.
Samuel Adeniran scored the match winner for San Antonio. It was his team leading 10th Goal of the season, which moves him into a tie for Top Ten Goal scorers in the USL Western Conference. Said Adeniran following the match, “I’m feeling humble, because being the first-place team doesn’t mean anything unless you get to the playoffs. Any team can beat any team, like I always say. So right now, as a whole team we are humble and we’re going in respecting all the teams that we will meet in the playoffs to be good teams. But, also understanding that we are the best team, so we got to move forward and keep doing what we’re doing.”
SAFC Midfielder PC found Adeniran in the top right corner of Sacramento's box in the 17' and Adeniran did the rest, curling a sensational shot past Republic Keeper Danny Vitielo into the lower far corner of the net for the 1-0 lead that would hold the entire way. The Assist was PC's 6th, which is good for second on the team (Dhillon).
SAFC Keeper Jordan Farr racked up his 14th clean sheet of the season, extending his own record. He is now just one clean sheet shy of the League record for a single season.
Farr reflected after the match, “We love it, this was amazing. We don’t take that for granted but guys are still just hungry. We’re happy, but we know that playing at home for three games can win the whole thing. That’s incredible. So that’s our goal. That’s our target right now.”
SAFC's Shannon Gomez was shown a Red Card in the 84' for receiving two Yellow Cards on the night and will be suspended for the next match, pending any possible appeals.
The team also honored Tim Hankinson prior to the match. Hankinson passed away earlier this week following a battle with cancer. He was the original Manager of the San Antonio Scorpions in the NASL and also served with the San Antonio FC broadcast team and was considered a local icon of the sport.
Next up for San Antonio FC is a two match road trip, their final road swing of the season. First up, they will travel to face the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC. The two Clubs played for the first time ever last season at Toyota Field, a game that ended in a 1-1 draw.
SAFC's final regular season home match will be on October 15th against Orange County SC. Those two teams were the participants in the 2021 Western Conference Final.
Full game highlights from San Antonio FC vs Sacramento Repulic are below.
IMAGES - SAN ANTONIO FC TWITTER
PHOTO - DARREN ABATE / INSTAGRAM: @PEAKACTION