INDIO, CALIFORNIA – Vancouver Whitecaps FC claimed a 2-1 victory over USL Championship side Las Vegas Lights FC on Sunday in their fifth preseason friendly of the 2023 Coachella Valley Invitational at Empire Polo Club in Indio, California.
Five minutes in, the ‘Caps played through Las Vegas’ midfield with some tidy build-up, which led to Kamron Habibullah getting on the end of a loose ball and firing a volley just over the bar.
Fast forward to the 33rd minute, the ‘Caps would score the opening goal of the match, with Pedro Vite curling home a stunning free kick to make it 1-0.
The Blue and White almost found a second goal seven minutes later, as Andrés Cubas’ low shot skimmed just wide of the far post.
Cristian Dájome also came close to finding the net shortly after, forcing a save from the Las Vegas goalkeeper.
The Lights would get an equalizer just before the half, as Lucas Stauffer’s deflected shot found the back of the net.
Both teams would go into the break level at 1-1.
After the halftime interval, Habibullah once again came close to scoring, as his shot inside the box was parried out for a corner by the Las Vegas goalkeeper.
In the 80th minute, the 'Caps found the go-ahead goal. Ryan Raposo whipped in a low cross from a free kick, which was headed in by Dájome, who scored his fourth goal of the preseason.
The Blue and White would see out the rest of the match to secure the win.
After playing two games in a day, the team will now get set for a week of training in Southern California ahead of their final preseason friendly against Western Conference rivals Minnesota United FC next Saturday, February 18 at Empire Polo Club, with kickoff set for 10 a.m. PT. Updates will be available on Whitecaps FC social media channels.
33' – VAN – Pedro Vite
42' – LVL – Lucas Stauffer
77' – VAN – Cristian Dájome (Ryan Raposo)
32’ – LVL
48' – VAN – Ryan Raposo
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
60.Isaac Boehmer; 27.Ryan Raposo, 12.Karifa Yao, 61.Matteo Campagna (52.Vasco Fry+ 70'), 2.Mathías Laborda; 30.Kamron Habibullah (28.Levonte Johnson* 70'), 20.Andrés Cubas ©, 18.Alessandro Schöpf; 45.Pedro Vite, 22.Ali Ahmed (76.Joe Hanson+ HT); 11.Cristian Dájome
*Unsigned 2023 MLS SuperDraft Selection, +WFC2