Las Vegas, Nevada- Greetings sports fans and welcome to your hometown Las Vegas Lights FC’s historic home debut. Tonight, here at Cashman Field, the Montreal Impact along with a sellout crowd of 10,387 happy fans have come out to welcome the fledgling Las Vegas Lights FC to the world soccer arena in what is sure to be a delightful home opener.
Having arrived early I’m one of the first to enter the arena and have the distinctive honor of throwing out the first cold one. Dilly Dilly! I then betook myself of an inspection tour of the facility and was very pleased by what I saw.
The overall cleanliness, and the friendly, helpful courtesy of the entire staff who were really on the ball and ready when the gates opened shortly before 8pm was rather impressive. From the parking lot to the press box all was in apple pie order.
Visitors to Cashman Field will have to be be delighted by the ease of access, and ample parking. The delightful variety of snacks available and being always close by your seat will surely be a crowd pleaser as well.
As the gates open and soccer fans who have come from all over the world to witness this historic match make their way into the stadium the air is ahum with a magical vibe that comes from 10,387 happy people gathered together to have fun and watch a good ball game.
If you’re not here perhaps you should be asking yourself; why is this, and how can I make it up to myself and my loved ones?
Las Vegas is a festival of twinkling lights in the background as both teams take to the field amidst thunderous music and applause. Drummers are in the stands beating out riffs in front of the DJ who’s bumpin’ it. The American and Canadian flags, along with many colorful pennants, banners and fliers are flying in the chill evening breeze as Oh Canada plays over the PA. Not one knee is bent, no man bows down here. The Star Spangled Banner got a standing ovation as well. Nuff said.
The game was fun to watch even if the Lights didn’t win tonight and feel I can safely speak for at least 10,386 of my witnesses that futbol is here to stay Las Vegas.
Goalkeeper Ricardo Ferrino did a good job of keeping Montreal from impacting the net behind him for the first 63 minutes of play before Michael Salazar managed to get one past him. 2:42 later Ferrino would score one for Montreal when he bounces off a defender and hits the net behind him.
His game ended moments later when two players got him out of position and set him up for an inside shot at an empty net. Ferrino grabbed one assailants arm and swung him around off the shot. He saved the goal at the cost of the Lights’ first red card.
No question the Impact are a good team and they came to welcome the Lights to the world soccer stage much as one might expect they would. These men are competitors and rivals on this field and nobody wants to lose. But one must lose.
Much was said in the following press conference about how, and why, much was said about who did what wrong. Owner Brett Lashbrook stated after the game that ” for a team that’s never won a single game to draw 10,387 fans is”…. more to the point. The Lights were by no means bullied around by the older boys from the MLS.
Mr. Lashbrook expressed to me personally it was too bad the game didn’t fall their way to which I could only say you can’t win them all. The key factor here however you might choose to look at it is that no champion wins unblooded.
In spite of some tactical errors that can be looked over as the exuberance of young athletes competeing for a place on the word socccer stage the Lights played their heaarts out for the crowd and the crowd knew it. I am very excited as we head into the first regular home game on the schedule with Fresno FC Saturday March 24th at 8pm
Tonight was a coming out party and it’s clear that, just as he anticipated when he brought the Lights to Las Vegas they would be welcomed with open arms. When you’re right you’re right. Last night Cashman Field saw the magic that is called lightning in a bottle and Las Vegas has caught it in the Lights.
Quote owner; “VIVA LIGHTS!!