FC Tucson Women loses lead to SC del Sol in final minutes; 2-2 draw makes Desert Conference race tight

Ashly Martinez split two to put Tucson FC up 1-0 in the 28th. (Andy Morales/AllSportsTucson)

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Down 2-0, SC del Sol scored in the 89th minute and again in the third minute of extra time to force a draw with FC Tucson Women Sunday night at the Kino North Stadium. The tie gives Tucson a 3-0-2 record with 11 points and SC del Sol is now 2-1-1 with 7 points. The draw keeps the team from Phoenix in the Desert Conference race but the concern now is Arizona Arsenal SC (3-0-1).

The team from Mesa has 10 points and is technically right there with Tucson, having played one less match, but SC del Sol and Arizona Arsenal SC are meeting this Wednesday at Reach 11 in Phoenix to bring both squads up to five matches. A victory by SC del Sol would keep Tucson in the conference lead, barely. A win by Arizona Arsenal would put the first-year program in the lead down the stretch.

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Tucson hosts Atomic City FC (2-3) of Las Vegas on Friday, June 24 at 7 pm before ending the regular season with Arizona Arsenal visiting on Friday, July 1 and then a final match at SC del Sol on Saturday, July 9.

Former @cfhsgsoccer and current @PimaAthletics standout Caitlyn Maher helped put @fctucsonwomen on the scoreboard with a cross that eventually found its way to Ashly Martinez in the 28th. Maher controlled the right flank pic.twitter.com/CX4JzVcKYs

— Andy Morales (@AndyMorales8) June 20, 2022

Caitlyn Maher crossed the ball into the box in the 28th minute where Ashly Martinez split two defenders to put Tucson up 1-0 and Ellie Robinson did the same to Kate Connelly in the 85th for the 2-0 lead. SC del Sol had 10 shots in the second half and FC Tucson keeper Hope Hisey came away with 6 saves including a stop on a penalty kick in the 58th minute to keep SC del Sol at bay.

A goal in the final minute of regulation cut the lead down to 2-1 and then three minutes were added on for extra time and SC del Sol made the best of it on an equalizer.

“Disappointed at the end, allowing them to come back when we’re up two to zero. I have to give it to del Sol, they kept pressing us and creating chances and opportunities,” head coach Kelly Pierce said in a release. “Hope came up with a huge save, we had two good goals and created a lot of opportunities but we couldn’t find that third one.”

Hope Hisey plays for @fctucsonwomen @hopehisey31 @ArizonaSoccer https://t.co/t5Hm5QaARu pic.twitter.com/TrsxBUtnB8

— Andy Morales (@AndyMorales8) June 20, 2022

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Named one of “Arizona’s Heart & Sol” by KOLD and Casino del Sol, Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014, he was awarded the Ray McNally Award in 2017 and a 2019 AZ Education News recognition. He was a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. He was the first in Arizona to write about high school beach volleyball and high school girls wrestling and his unique perspective can only be found here and on AZPreps365.com. Andy is a Southern Arizona voting member of the Ed Doherty Award, recognizing the top football player in Arizona, and he was named a Local Hero by the Tucson Weekly for 2016. Andy was named an Honorary Flowing Wells Caballero in 2019, became a member of the Sunnyside Los Mezquites Cross Country Hall of Fame in 2021 and he was a member of the Amphi COVID-19 Blue Ribbon Committee. He earned a Distinguished Service Award from Amphitheater and he was recognized by City Councilman Richard Fimbres. Contact Andy Morales at [email protected]

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