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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Velocity continue Jagermeister Cup play in rematch at Union Omaha

By Ethan Myers The Spokesman-Review

A month after a thrilling win over USL League One-best Union Omaha, the Spokane Velocity draw a rematch on Thursday as Jagermeister Cup action resumes.

The Velocity will look to maintain its second-place standing in the group stage of the World Cup-style tournament against Omaha on the road.

“We know Omaha (is) a good team and it took a well-rounded performance from the players to come out with the result against them recently,” Velocity coach Leigh Veidman said. “But the most important thing here is us and what we can do to improve from our last performance.

“The team has been working hard on the training pitch to continue to raise our bar and that is our main focus right now with ourselves.”

In front of Velocity fans in ONE Spokane Stadium on May 11, Javier Martin Gil scored a highlight-reel goal in stoppage time to secure a 3-2 victory in Jagermeister group stage play.

Spokane is 1-0-2 in the cup, which is separate from regular season standings, and sits at 3-3-1 overall in the league.

Omaha sits atop the league with a 4-1-1 record, but is 0-1-2 in the cup. The Union have not dropped a game since the loss to Spokane last month.

The game, kicking off at 5 p.m., will be broadcast on SWX and streamed on ESPN+.

The Velocity also announced another addition to the roster on Wednesday.

Masango Akale, a 22-year-old Minneapolis native, started as a trialist in Spokane’s international friendly against Chivas de Guadalajara earlier this month, leaving a strong impression with the club.

Kimarni’s Smith’s go-ahead goal against Chivas came off a perfect cross from Akale in the second half of the 2-1 victory.

“The funny thing is I could hear the fans behind me shouting, ‘Sign number 30,’ and ‘Give that kid a name on his shirt,’ so it was great Masango impressed the fans right away and we are happy to add him to the team,” Veidman said in a release. “Masango is a player that went somewhat under the radar, and we were fortunate enough to have him in (the) market to train with the team and play against Chivas U23.

“He showed a lot of high-level football through the couple weeks he was here and then showed well in the Chivas game, which is what ultimately sealed the deal for him.”

Akale’s signing is pending league and federation approval.