It was a night to celebrate in Northern Nevada as Reno 1868 FC proved to be the best USL Championship team in the state of Nevada after a 4-0 blowout against Las Vegas Lights FC.
Reno saw multiple chances early in the first half, but the excitement officially started in the 41st minute when Corey Hertzog found the back of the net after a header by Brian Brown. It was the fifth goal notched by Corey Hertzog this season while the assist marked Brown’s fifth.
The dynamic duo was hot again immediately in the second half when Hertzog perfectly chipped a ball into place for Brown to run onto and find the back of the net. The goal marked Brown’s eighth of the season.
“It’s always fun, it’s a game to die for,” Brown said. “We wanted to win, we wanted to get back on a winning streak and we wanted to get a clean sheet so that was good. And against Las Vegas our rival team, it couldn’t be better than that.”
Zach Carroll and Emrah Klimenta shined defensively, including in the 72nd minute when Carroll blocked Vegas’ shot from going in a wide-open goal. Klimenta had five clearances, two blocks and gained possession seven times while Carroll had four clearances, two blocks and gained possession three times.
The scoring continued in the 80th minute when former Las Vegas Lights FC leading goal scorer Raúl Mendiola dribbled up field from the half and rocketed in a shot from outside the 18.
“It felt good to see those guys I used to play with,” Mendiola said. “There’s some guys I’ve known since I was 10 years old and it felt good to be like ‘You know what this is our first professional game against each other’ I wish the best to them for the rest of the season.”
The shutout marked the second clean sheet of the season for goalkeeper Matt Bersano.
Reno will travel to San Antonio next weekend to take on San Antonio FC before returning home on June 15 to host LA Galaxy II.