Official Kickers Game Summary
Kickers: 1 21′ Terzaghi (Bentley)
Greenville: 1 87′ Cox-Ashwood (Lee)
The Richmond Kickers (14-7-9, 51 pts) celebrated their first regular-season title since the 2013 season in front of a sellout crowd of 6,000 fans, Saturday night, as the Kickers earned a 1-1 draw against second-place Greenville Triumph SC (12-8-10, 46 pts). Emiliano Terzaghi scored his 17th goal of the season while securing his third-straight Golden Boot.
As the final whistle rang out in City Stadium, the players and coaches shook hands while black t-shirts emblazoned with, “2022 Regular Season Champions,” were distributed to members of the Kickers. Finally, a week after clinching the number one overall seed away in Madison, Wisc., the Kickers, arm-in-arm, raced towards The Red Army to celebrate a regular-season title three years in the making under Head Coach Darren Sawatzky.
The Kickers completed their historic regular-season campaign with a ninth-straight match unbeaten to move their season tally to 51 points which ranks tied for second in league history for most points earned in a season.
Furthermore, Terzaghi’s goal that put the Golden Boot race on ice marked the Kickers’ 54th goal of the season which broke North Texas SC’s 2019 record of 53 goals scored in a season. Meanwhile, Jonathan Bolanos officially became the league’s Assist Champion with a record-setting 11 assists during the season.
Adding to the standard-setting, the Kickers broke another USL League One-era club record as the club enjoyed its first post-COVID sellout crowd, maxing out the capacity with 6,000 fans at City Stadium.
Akira Fitzgerald was the first to add to the night’s history. As the match began, the goalkeeper officially made his 100th USL League One appearance – the first player to ever reach that milestone. He joined Matt Bolduc as one of the two active Kickers to make 100 or more appearances for the club.
Richmond started the match on the front foot as Terzaghi received the ball in the box and took a shot that went just over the crossbar in the first minute of the match.
The Kickers’ attacking persistence was rewarded in the 21st minute when Ethan Bryant found Matthew Bentley on the flank. Bentley then slotted the ball to Terzaghi, who was crashing the space and slid the ball past the keeper to give the Kickers’ the advantage.
Coming out of the half, the visitors ratcheted up their own defensive pressure in search of an equalizer, but the Roo’s defense held their guard up and continued to defend the net, and, when necessary on three different instances, Fitzgerald came to the relief of the defense to make crucial saves.
However, in the 87th minute, former Kickers player Evan Lee found a sliver of space in the Kickers’ defensive end and slotted the ball to Alexandre Cox-Ashwood in the box who one-timed an attempt into the net to knot up the scoreline.
The Kickers nearly found the winner only a minute later. Luke Pavone raced up the right wing and found Nathan Aune with a pass. Aune quickly heeled the ball to Chris Cole who was crashing into the box. However, Cole was not afforded a lot of time to tee up a shot and his hastened attempt went just over the crossbar.
Richmond will enjoy a bye week before hosting a USL League One Semifinal match, presented by Hisense on October 29. Kickoff time for the semifinal match is set for 6 pm. It will be the first time the Kickers have hosted a playoff game at City Stadium since 2014.
During the semifinal match, the Kickers will host a Blackout City Stadium night, presented by The Lemus Group and United Real Estate Richmond. The first 1,000 fans at the match will receive a Black Out T-Shirt. Playoff tickets are available for purchase at richmondkickers.com/tickets.
Will you help support independent, local journalism?
We need your help. RVAHub is a small, independent publication, and we depend on our readers to help us provide a vital community service. If you enjoy our content, would you consider a donation as small as $5? We would be immensely grateful! Interested in advertising your business, organization, or event? Get the details here.