Reno 1868 FC’s historic 2020 season came to a close in the Western Conference Semifinals Saturday, Oct. 17 in a 5-4 loss to Phoenix Rising FC at Greater Nevada Field. 

Reno fell 5-4 in penalty kicks after the contest was tied 2-2 through 120 minutes of play. Reno won its first playoff game in franchise history, beating the Los Angeles Galaxy 4-1 before falling to Phoenix in the semifinals. 

Following a four-month suspension to the season, Reno ended the year leading the league in point total on its way to its first-ever semifinals playoff appearance in franchise history. 

Reno started the scoring early, as Corey Hertzog pounced on a Phoenix mistake to make it 1-0 in the sixth minute. Hertzog has scored a franchise-best four postseason goals with Reno 1868 FC since signing with the club in 2019. 

In the 40th minute, Sparks native Kevin Partida extended Reno’s lead to 2-0 with his second career playoff goal. Two minutes into stoppage time, Phoenix cut the score to 2-1 just before halftime.

Phoenix struck again in the 71st minute off a goal from Solomon Asante, tying the game at 2-2. The contest remained tied for the remainder of the half, sending the game into penalty kicks for the first time in Reno’s history. 

Reno converted the first four shots, before a Zac Lubin save set up a game-winner for Phoenix. Phoenix will face El Paso Locomotive in the USL Championship on Saturday, Oct. 24. 

Isaiah Burrows can be reached at or on Twitter @Isaiah__Burrows.