Ethan Vanacore-Decker vs. Saint Louis FC - June 30, 2019
Noah Riffe

SPRvSTL Quotes: "It was a good performance"

Swope Park Rangers head coach Paulo Nagamura

On the Rangers response to Saint Louis FC’s goal:
"
I think the guys were great today. They worked really hard of course the heat and the weather it was difficult, but it was difficult for both teams. But the way they work as a team and as a unit especially defensively was very good. I think at the end of the day we deserve that second goal and to win the game. I cannot stress this enough I think they work extremely well especially defensively and I’m really happy with how they responded after conceding a goal."

On Felipe Hernandez’s red card:
"
I haven’t seen a replay yet but what I saw is that a player for Saint Louis grabbed Felipe on the face. I didn’t see the rest of it. I need to see the video. My feeling was that if Felipe is getting the red the Saint Louis player did enough in my opinion to get a red as well. So, in my opinion it was unfair in that aspect."

On playing a man down for the last few minutes:
"
I think they did very well in the last seven to 10 minutes to keep that score and to lock the game up. Again, I’m extremely proud with how all the players performed especially on the back end of the game. They dealt with the situations really well and honestly it was very pleasing to see."

On the improvement of the team:
"
It takes work on a day to day basis and on a weekly basis. In my opinion the more we have that the more the teams going to get better. There’s a lot of young guys to there’s a learning process that they’re going to have to go through to get better and today definitely shows signs of improvement of the players as a team, as an individual and I think we took another step in the right direction."

Swope Park Rangers defender Graham Smith

On playing today after traveling from Salt Lake:
"Got in at one o’clock today, played at four. I think the most important thing is to have the right mentality, be a professional, do what they ask of you and try to do it as well as you can."

On the improvement of the team:
"
We’ve had some good performances. I’m just happy to get a win. Happy to get that feeling back. Haven’t had it in a little while and just try to build on it. It was a good performance all around personally and as a team. Definitely something we can build on going forward."

On playing a man down at the end of the game:
"
I thought we managed it really well. When we had the ball up in their end, we kept it really well. We killed a little time and they didn’t get any real clear-cut chances in stoppage time and in the last 10 minutes. So, I thought we did a really good job with that."

On playing for both Sporting KC and the Swope Park Rangers:
"
Any time I can get out on the field in a game like setting its good experience because it’s hard to replicate those game minutes in training. So, you just try to build on each one of those opportunities."

On dealing with so many corners:
"
We kind of changed our scheme a little bit. We had a lot of corners and a lot of free kicks in kind of similar positions. What it comes down to is just mentality and I think the guys especially on the front post. Ethan (Vanacore-Decker) won a lot of those battles in the front and he’s the first line of defense there and if he can get it out then it makes everybody’s jobs so much easier. It’s just all mentality in those situations."

Swope Park Rangers forward Ethan Vanacore-Decker

On his game winning goal:
"
It was awesome. It was so hot out, but it was hot for both teams so that’s not an excuse. Just to see the ball pop out and my eyes lit up and just thank god it went in the goal because if I missed that it would have been really bad."

On the team fighting back:
"
We’re obviously making progress and we never really out of games we just get bit by our own mistakes we never really get beat. To come out and play against a really good team and play hard, we got the win so it’s awesome."

On playing down a man:
"
We played a guy down for maybe ten minutes. I don’t even know how long it was because the stoppage time was so long. But, to come out and fight with a guy down and win, we didn’t really give up any chances also, it was good. It was a good performance."

On defending so many set pieces:
"
In the beginning of the year we were giving up a lot of goals off set pieces and I couldn’t tell you the last time we gave up a goal on set pieces. We’re locked in. We changed the way we mark. We’re zoning now instead of zone marking and it’s working now so we’ll keep it going."

Swope Park Rangers midfielder Felipe Hernandez

On the win:
"
It’s been a while, it’s our second win this season but it’s always good to get a win especially here at home."

On the team’s improvement:
"
Throughout the year we’ve had our chances to win games. We said it at halftime that this is where we lack in experience. We get in good positions to win games and we just can’t close games out. So, it was good to get the three points."

On his goal:
"
Kuz (Wan Kuzain) played me a good ball and I found some space and luckily, I found the net."

On his red card:
"
It was just a little incident. He put his hands up and out of reaction my first instinct was push him away. My hands went up to his face. I would say if (the referee's) going to punish me, he’s got to punish both of us. Me getting a red and him getting a yellow was kind of harsh."

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