San Antonio FC was left frustrated again on Saturday night as a controversial penalty at the death gave Orange County SC a 1-1 draw at Toyota Field.
The penalty came in stoppage time, and was similar to the decision for San Antonio last week, although even more controversial. As Gustavo Villalobos appeared to run in to Michael Reed, who wasn’t stopping to block him but rather defending normally. But despite Villalobos initiating the contact, the referee pointed to the spot, allowing Jerry van Ewijk to step up and bury the penalty for the equalizer.
“It is a spur of the moment call, which could go our way or could not go our way, and today it didn’t go our way. We had quite a few chances before that and if we finished those, the PK doesn’t even matter.” Said San Antonio FC midfielder Kris Tyrpak after the match.
Tyrpak opened the scoring in just the second minute after a strong counter from San Antonio FC to start the match. SAFC defender Greg Cochrane crossed in to the box, finding Tyrpak who was left with a header at close range and made no mistake, scoring with 1:34 gone, the fastest goal in San Antonio FC history.
After the opening goal, San Antonio FC worked to double their lead and went agonizingly close in the 18th minute. Midfielder AJ Ajeakwa’s first touch made the space which allowed him to play the ball through for fellow midfielder Billy Forbes who shot powerfully but could only find the crossbar.
SAFC was lucky to not concede an equalizer in the 54th minute after Orange County midfielder Frank Olijve was afforded too much space, allowing him to shoot. SAFC keeper Diego Restrepo got a touch, but needed defender Ben Newnam to clear off the line, but right in to his fellow defender Stephen McCarthy, fortunately for the hosts, right in to the arms of Restrepo.
Only some crazy defending kept San Antonio FC from doubling their lead in the 69th minute as midfielder Cesar Elizondo looked to set up Forbes. The Orange County defense responded and got a last ditch tackle in on Forbes, the ball falling out to midfielder Michael Reed, whose shot was well saved.
It seemed like San Antonio FC were going to hold on for all three points, but they were punished for their wastefulness by the controversial penalty call, only gaining one point on Real Monarchs.