Phoenix Rising vs. Colorado Springs Recap

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Coming off a 3rd straight draw, Coach Rick Schantz was happy with what he saw from his team.

“There’s not a lot to fix, the performance was fantastic,” Schantz said. “We dominated in all areas, we won the challenges, we had more key passes, more possession, more shots on goal, you name it, we were the better team.”

But after outshooting Colorado Springs 32-15. Schantz is looking for the team to improve their play in the final third of the field.

“If we’re a little more ruthless and lethal in our final attack, hopefully the game’s out of hand, and it’s already four or five goals,” Schantz said. We know that we can score goals, and now we’re proving that we can really dominate a game.“

The teams play, he hopes, sends a message to the rest of the league that this team is to be feared.

“We want to be unpredictable,“ Schantz said. “I think they showed, definitely league-wide, that once we get the ball we’re going to be tough to stop.”

Defensive Midfield Pairing

With Kevon Lambert having international duty with Jamaica earlier this week, the team deployed a formation with two defensive midfielders, with James Musa and Javier Perez getting the start.

“It took the pressure off one or the other to be just defensive,” Schantz said. “I thought they did a great job together and it seems to be a good formula for us.”

Central Midfielder Dynamics

Midfielder Javier Perez is no stranger to his attacking midfield counterpart, Jon Bakero.

“I don’t know if anybody knows this, but those two played together when they were 12-years-old in Valencia, Spain.  They’ve known each other for years.” Schantz said. “They both have that Spanish flair about them, and it was evident that they’ve been playing together.”

The team knew what that pairing is capable of last week during training.

“Some spectacular stuff between the two of them,” Schantz said “I think what that does for us is that it opens up our wing play a little bit when they’re so good in the middle.”

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