Phoenix Rising’s late goals save the 2-2 draw with San Diego Loyal

Phoenix Rising FC went undefeated at home earlier in the season, saving a 2-2 draw with San Diego Loyal FC at Wild Horse Pass on Saturday night.

It was the second time the two teams met on the Rising home field this year, but it was clear that the game would be different from the season opener, which Phoenix won 4-1.

Two places in the Phoenix midfield were occupied by Jeremy Kelly and Joey Callistri, who made their first season starts. Those openings came because Kevon Lambert is playing in Japan friendly games for Jamaica and Aodhan Quinn was a pre-game scratch with hamstrings.

SD Loyal was more aggressive than the first game and created more chances. It led to the opening goal when Loyal’s Miguel Berry outflanked Rising defender James Musa and scored a driving finish to score the goal.

“Every time you play a team a second time, it adapts and adapts to certain things,” Callistri said. “They came out and they were definitely ready for this game and they were tough opponents.”

It was the same result up to halfway, the first time this season the promoted team was at halfway behind at home.

“It was really difficult for us in the first half,” said Rising manager Rick Schantz. “Jack Blake and Corey Hertzog killed us when they came under their number 9. We struggled in this pocket. Our full-backs didn’t communicate enough and we didn’t kick in closely. They just took us apart by the middle of the field and when we pushed we were fine but every time they broke the press we were in big trouble. “

Phoenix made some adjustments at halftime, but Loyal was the first to score in the second half. Blake hit a defender of the newly promoted defender to make room for a shot, which he expanded to 2-0 in the 71st minute.

But Phoenix, who was runner-up in the USL championship league in terms of goals scored, fought its way back.

“I think you saw the heart of Phoenix Rising,” said Schantz. “They refuse to lose here and they are not ready to give up. They will never stop and I told them that I am a hard worker and I will never give up. I will never give up anything. “

Up-and-coming striker Santi Moar extended his streak to seven with a rebound goal in the 90 + 1 minute of the game.

From then on, Phoenix pushed on with six straight turns. The sixth in the 90 + 7 minute was where they equalized. Callistri remained unmarked at the end of the penalty area, who was able to insert it to make it 2-2.

The energy of the 8,053 fans, setting a record attendance for Rising, was evident throughout the game, the first when the club allowed the full capacity of the new stadium in the Gila River Indian Community, which can hold approximately 10,000.

Phoenix’s next game will be at home against Tacoma Defiance on Saturday at 7:30 pm CET

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