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Changes & Hopes Underway as Sac Republic and River Cats Make First 2017 Appearances

Z9B9387 e1488789567428 - Changes & Hopes Underway as Sac Republic and River Cats Make First 2017 Appearances

The weather may not be summer-like, but the appearances over the weekend at their home venues for the Sacramento River Cats and Sacramento Republic FC told us that spring, at least, was right around the corner.

The United Soccer League’s Sacramento Republic FC, hoping for an announcement later this year they’ll land a coveted Major Soccer League franchise, saw its first action of the season last Saturday, facing off in a non-league match against USL counterpart FC Cincinnati, which ended in a tough 2-2 draw.

The USL season for Sacramento will kick off in Seattle on March 26, with the first league game at Bonney Field set for Saturday, April 1, 7:30pm against Orange County SC.

The River Cats, meanwhile, held its annual Preseason Party on Sunday at a cold, blustery and sometimes rainy Raley Field, but that didn’t stop the fans from coming out and seeing several new additions to the 17-year-old ballpark.

Several concession storefronts have been renamed, and bear titles such as the Koop & Kennel Pub, QAO’s Mexican Cantina and Cadillac Diner. The popular Down on the Farm kids’ area has been almost completely renovated, sporting new Sacramento-themed play equipment and miniature sized play field.

The River Cats will open its Pacific Coast League home season on Thursday, April 6 against Tacoma.

Tickets for the 2017 season are available for both teams at sacrepublicfc.com and milb.com.

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Sacramento defender James Kiffe maneuvers past a Cincinnati defender Saturday night at Bonney Field
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The popular area beyond the outfield fence has been completely renovated for the season.
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The Cadillac Diner is just one of the Raley Field concession stands that has been renamed.

Photos by Steve Martarano

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About the author

Steve Martarano

Steve Martarano

A resident of Sacramento since graduating with a journalism degree from the University of Nevada, Reno, Steve spent the 1980s at The Sacramento Union, working as a sports writer, music reviewer and crime reporter, among other assignments. He's spent the last 25+ years working in government public affairs for both state and federal agencies and currently is with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Bay-Delta office in Sacramento. He has shot just about every local sports team for the Sacramento Press, including local colleges, the Sacramento River Cats and Sacramento Republic FC. He resides in Curtis Park with his wife Sharon.

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