What did Josh Wolff say at halftime?
Whatever changes the Austin FC head coach made, it worked: Austin FC transformed a stumbling first half into an adrenaline-fueled 3-1 victory for their first-ever MLS win against the Colorado Rapids on Saturday night.
While Austin FC fans, many of whom were in Denver to see the match first-hand, were hoping for the club's first goal, they weren't expecting the explosive 10-minute stretch that saw Diego Fagundez make history and Cecilio Dominguez get a chance at a hat trick.
After a flat first half, it was Fagundez who realized the club's first-ever goal as he snuck one in behind Rapids GK William Yarborough to hit the bottom left corner. Newbie Daniel Pereira, who shone in his second professional appearance, brought an impressive drive up the pitch to log the club's first assist.
THIS. RIGHT. HERE.
History for our Club. History for the ATX. pic.twitter.com/FepuI4pgVx
— Austin FC (@AustinFC) April 25, 2021
Before anyone could catch their breath, Dominguez showed the crowd why he wears the No. 10 jersey as he joined Fagundez with the game-winning goal. Dominguez confidently knocked one in in the 67th minute of play, sprinting off the pitch and jumping into the arms of his teammates on the bench. The club had secured its first lead in its short history. For once, La Murga's instruments were silent as they too joined into the celebratory roar.
Wolff said that Dominguez was a driving factor in the club's momentous win.
"I think that energy became contagious around the field," Wolff said. "And most of that was driven by Cecilio, he came in and really gave a good impact to kick off the second half and that bled into everything."
But one goal wasn't enough for Dominguez, who returned once again to the opposite corner to drive in another for the team four minutes later. He may have upped the score to 3-1, but more importantly, Dominguez and Fagundez had hit the gas and let the Rapids know that they weren't letting up.
The final whistle blew, and Austin FC took their first victory 3-1.
Wolff said it was satisfying to see the club reach their full potential.
"Once we had a bit of momentum, I think it was clear as to as to what we were capable of doing," Wolff said. "And a lot of credit goes to the players, they worked their butts off and got everything they deserve."
The #denVERDE crew may be leaving the Dick's Sporting Goods Stadium with smiles on their faces tonight, but it didn't seem like the match would go the Verde way in the first half.
In a last-minute lineup change, Austin FC's DP Tomas Pochettino was very suddenly benched due to a request by the MLS, with the league citing issues in registration as the reason for their request.
Defender Matt Besler, another starter, was out due to the birth of his son, and Rodney Redes was swapped for Jared Stroud as the club switched into a 4-4-2 format.
Welcome to the world Miller James Besler 💙 4/23/21. Can't wait to bring you home to meet your sisters. #BeslerFamilyof5 #FOE pic.twitter.com/WZH3ikfGH8
— Matt Besler (@MattBesler) April 25, 2021
Despite the mysterious changes, Austin FC appeared to be off to a good start against the Rapids, who were also looking for their first goal of the season.
LB Ben Sweat was helping lead good charges at both wings, sending up crosses that threatened Rapids GK William Yarborough. However, after fending off an attack from forward Michael Barrios, Sweat suffered what appeared to be a knee injury. Twenty-one-year-old Zan Kolmanic took to the pitch and continued where Sweat left off, but his crosses weren't enough to aid a team that was lacking in communication and struggling to make plays in the final third.
Rapids forward Andre Shinyashiki capitalized on the club's discomfort and sent in a signature set piece to make Colorado's first goal of the season in the 36th minute of play.
Austin FC was unable to answer or even get a shot on target until the 45th minute of play, when Pereira made an attempt that gave the club just enough hope to formulate a rallying cry at halftime.
Three goals later, Austin FC left their second-ever match with a win—and the attention of the entire MLS. But the club still needs to work on cohesion and consistent attacks before its members can let in a collective sigh of relief.
"It's a momentous occasion for the city and for this organization," Wolff said. "Moments of the game were up and down, but they grinded. A lot of good feelings right now. A lot of firsts and we'll continue those throughout the year."
Now, it's time for celebration, but the club will need to keep that energy as they plan for another road match against Minnesota FC on Saturday, May 1.
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Whether you became a home chef when the pandemic began or have always enjoyed crafting delicious meals, it’s undeniable that no home is complete without a cozy kitchen.
Take a peek at these five gems on the market now.
In the South Austin Parten community, this castle-like four-bedroom, three-and-a-half bathroom stunner puts you just minutes from Austin, Dripping Springs and other nearby communities. Stark white and black contrasting features give the interiors a clean look, while a large curving staircase serves as a centerpiece for the ground floor. The chef’s kitchen is spacious, facing the living room and multiple windows, and immediately draws the eye. Upstairs you’ll find a spa-style bathroom, game room with a wet bar and Hill Country Views.This listing is held by Adam Zell and Lexie Zell.
This hyper-modern, 3,300-square-foot Scandinavian-styled home is a paradise for natural light in Hyde Park. With four bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms spread across one story, the home rests on concrete columns to protect from extreme climate conditions. Inside, you’ll find crisp, clean trim in the open-plan kitchen with built-in luxury appliances and a walk-in pantry. Lofty 12-foot ceilings and gigantic windows set the tone, with a wet bar and second living room for entertaining. When you retire to the master bedroom, enjoy a warm bath in the soaking tub or enjoy the multi-output shower.
This listing is held by Austin Stowell.
In the heart of Westlake, this stacked three-story new build is a sprawling 4,483 square feet with five bedrooms and four-and-a-half bathrooms. The home is centrally located and full of natural light, especially on the open concept first floor, which includes the kitchen, casual dining space and living area. The third floor has a bedroom and loft, perfect for the at-home worker.
This listing is held by Jen Templeton and Cheryl Albanese.
This 3,539 square foot, three-bedroom, three-and-a-half bathroom Tarrytown townhouse is newly remodeled but still holds on to its vintage charm. Bright white cabinets, a green accented island and quartzite countertops in the kitchen give the space a cheery feeling. Entering on the second floor, you’ll have to walk downstairs to get to the bedrooms, which include ensuite baths and walk-in showers. The third level bonus room is the perfect place for an at-home office.This listing is held by Cindy Fowler.
Just outside Austin in the sleepy town of Wimberley, the Backbone Ridge Ranch is one of the city’s most “iconic and pristine” properties. On nearly 50 acres of land, the house takes you into nature without getting too far from nearby cities. With 4,369 square feet, six bedrooms and six-and-a-half bathrooms, floor-to-ceiling windows effortlessly light the entire space. You’ll feel like a celebrity chef while cooking in the kitchen, even more so entertaining from the outdoor kitchen and living space. The 33,000-gallon quarried limestone pool is perfect for those hot Hill Country summers!This listing is held by Nicole Kessler.
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Sample some spirits
When: 11:30 a.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Where: Desert Door, 211 Darden Hill Rd. Driftwood
What: Attend Desert Door Distillery’s first Explorer Series of 2022. Guests will be able to sample Caliber on its own or in a delicious cocktail.
Eat some chili
When: 12 p.m. Saturday
Where: Sagebrush, 5500 S. Congress Ave.
What: Enjoy great chili and great music at the 14th Annual Chili Cold Blood Chili Cook-Off. All proceeds will be donated to Health Alliance for Austin Musicians in memory of Nick Curran.
Enjoy some local art
When: 4 p.m. Saturday
Where: Neill-Cochran House Museum, 2310 San Gabriel St.
What: The Neil-Cochran House Museum will host a multi-media art exhibition by Austin artist Nell Gottlieb, titled “Land as Persona: An Artist’s Journey.” Gottlieb works in multiple media to reexamine her coming of age, white and female in the Jim Crow South.
Catch some improv comedy
When: 7 p.m. Sunday
Where: GameOn! ATX, 1515 Dungan Ln.
What: ColdTowne ThrowDowne is an improv comedy tournament between troupes that will take place in front of a live studio audience and streamed live to the world on Twitch.
Catch a Johnny Cash-style show
When: 7:30 p.m. Sunday
Where: Georgetown Palace Theatre, 810 S. Austin Ave.
What: Experience music history with a unique musical about love and faith, struggle and success, rowdiness and redemption, and the healing power of home and family set to the tune of the legendary Johnny Cash.