Roughnecks FC begin USL season play

Tulsa’s Kosuke Kimura & Jaoquin Rivas in St. Louis last Saturday.

The Tulsa Roughnecks FC with a very successful preseason are set to begin the 2017 USL season this Satruday night against the Colorado Springs Switchbacks. Kickoff for the match is set for 7:00 pm at ONEOK Field.

One most remarkable preseason match was against the Chicago Fire, Tulsa’ Major League Soccer affiliate. The Roughnecks battled the parent club to a 2-1 decision. 

The Roughnecks got the friendly off to a quick start, scoring in the first five minutes.  Newcomer Ian Svantesson found himself alone on a breakaway and slotted home for the early 1-0 lead.

The squad from the Fire put together long stretches of possession over the final 40 minutes of the first half, but could not produce an equalizer as the TRFC backline kept the clean sheet.

When play resumed in the second half, it was the Fire who found the early goal, equalizing only three minutes after the restart.

The winner for the Roughnecks came five minutes from the end and came against the run of play.  An attack down the right wing produced a cross that found another newcomer, Pasha Kondrakhin, at the back post.

The former Dynamo Bryansk (RUS) striker placed his right-footed shot into the lower, right corner of the goal to make it 2-1.

Chicago put together several decent chances down the stretch but could not come up with an equalizer.

The Roughnecks opened the season on the campus of the University of Tulsa, scrimmaging the Golden Hurricane Men’s Team to a 1-0 win on February 25th and battled San Antonio FC to a one-all draw (tie) on March 11th.

This past weekend the Roughnecks traveled up I-44 to St. Louis and shut out Saint Louis FC 3-0 on Saturday evening.  Ian Svantesson, Jorge Corrales and Juan Caffa all scored to give the visitors a hard-fought shutout win and Tulsa goalkeeper Bryan Byars recorded his second clean sheet of the preseason. The Oklahoma native has surrendered only two goals in four matches.

Supporters known as the Roustabouts march to ONEOK Field from a rally on Guthrie Green.

Tulsa will close out the preseason Tuesday with a behind closed doors meeting with Oklahoma Wesleyan University at ONEOK Field.  The Roughnecks will open the USL regular season next Saturday, March 25, by hosting Colorado Springs.

Tickets are on sale for the home opener and the slate of matches that will run all the way until October at the ONEOK Field box office located at 201 North Elgin in the Brady District.

Information on season ticket packages and other perks can be ontained by calling 918-744-5901 or visiting tulsaroughnecksfc.com.