After a nearly 10-month absence since their last home match Las Vegas Lights FC are finally back home at Cashman Field, albeit under very different circumstances. Known for its distinct home-field advantage averaging nearly 8,000 fans per match, this weekend’s match will be played “closed-door” without any fans allowed to attend due to current health-related restrictions in place by state governmental orders.
However, the match marks the very first local professional sports team to play a match in Las Vegas since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There is no playbook for what our community has been through in recent months — and there are certainly no simple answers,” said Lights FC Owner & C.E.O. Brett Lashbrook. “But our hope is to bring back some normalcy to the lives of our fans and players. It will certainly be unusual to not have the fans in-person cheering us on but nonetheless, this is still another important step to the overall recovery process.”
The match also features the first leg of this year’s Silver State Classic against intra-state rival “r*NO.” And Lights FC is seeking to send a strong message this season under new head coach Frank Yallop with its first-ever series victory against the “team from the north.” Historically, the Lights have not won the competition since the club launched in 2018.
Due to the coronavirus, the 2020 season has been shortened and the 35 clubs across the country have been re-grouped into eight hyper-regionalized sub-divisions for a 16-match season. The Lights FC completed its first match of the season on March 7th with an away match before the season was postponed only 48 hours before its scheduled home opener on March 14th. The Lights FC will now finally make its 2020 season home opener this weekend after a tough road loss last weekend against San Diego Loyal SC.
The match kicks off at 7:30pm PT on Saturday and can be viewed live on ESPN+.
NEW PLAYER SIGNING: Lights FC also announced today the signing of Alex Culwell who most recently played for NISA’s Los Angeles Force. Culwell is familiar with Lights FC Head Coach Frank Yallop having trained with his Fresno FC squad in recent years. Culwell is expected to add further depth to the squad for the remainder of the 2020 season.