• Garrett Johnson

Energy looking to build momentum Sunday hosting Atlanta United 2

The OKC Energy have a chance at their first win of the season Sunday night in a rematch against Atlanta United 2. OKC lost the first matchup 1-0 on May 1st.

Coming off their strongest showing of the young season last Friday evening, playing Sporting Kansas City II to a 1-1 draw, the Energy have a chance to build off the newfound momentum.

OKC’s offense is finding their form with the improving health of forwards Frank Lopez and Jaime Chavez, who are still recovering from lingering offseason injuries.

Lopez was brought on in the second half of last week’s match, making his impact felt immediately, scoring the lone goal for the Energy.

"We were better in attack, we were quicker in that and in getting our defensive shape. Once we won the ball, our transitions forward were quite good. In fact, our goal was scored that way," head coach John Pascarella said of OKC's last outing. "There are facets of the game that are coming along. We’ve got to make sure that we’re creating those chances and exploiting those moments, so we’ve been doing work on that this week.”

Defender Rob Coronado is eager to help the offense continue to improve, and predicts there will be opportunities to do so Sunday night.

“They have a lot of numbers going forward,“ he said. “We’re going to have the opportunity to attack during that transitional moment.”

Dealing with injuries and a largely overturned roster, Coronado details how he is familiarizing himself with the different lineups.

“Getting to know my teammates, you know with injuries and all,” he said. “The lineup is moving around a little bit, so just getting to know how each of us play.”

Though just the fourth game of the season, the Energy will participate in their first rematch of the season, hosting Atlanta United 2 yet again.

In the first matchup between the two sides, Oklahoma City failed to bury a bevy of chances in front of goal, ultimately falling 1-0 to the visitors.

Coronado said the team has been working on beating the Atlanta press, and they feel very prepared ahead of Sunday's rematch.

“We’re very prepared for their press as well as those transitional moments," he said. "We have space in the wider areas to attack and if we take advantage of that, we’re going to have success during the game.”

Coronado and the rest of the Energy squad will take on Atlanta United 2 at Taft Stadium on Sunday at 5 p.m.

The game will be streamed on ESPN+.

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