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San Antonio FC scores behind draw, extends unbeaten streak

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One of San Antonio FC coach Alen Marcina’s mantras is to tell players to “willingly put their faces where others don’t.”

For a team built around resilience and the notion of being a “mentality monster,” the phrase was applied Saturday in several different ways. SAFC were called upon to overcome fatigue in his third game in eight days and to keep moving forward after losing striker Santiago his Patino with a red card.

But in the waning days of Saturday, Martina’s teachings were taken literally. With San Antonio scoring a goal about five minutes into stoppage time in the second half, midfielder Shannon replied that Gomez charged towards the bouncing ball in the six-yard box and risked a collision or he replied that he I was hit in the face by the LA Galaxy II goalkeeper.

Gomez said he was desperate to avoid a second home defeat of the season but knew he needed to take the chance and win the race ball-to-ball. He slid in front of the keeper’s parry attempt and landed a short-range header into the net, allowing San Antonio (16-3-2, 50 points) to extend his undefeated streak with his 1-1 draw at Toyota Field. helped extend the season to nine games. .

“We didn’t have a lot of connections up front, but we had to dig deeper and find something out of the game,” Gomez said. “Coaches always preach when your crosses aren’t good or your combinations aren’t good. You can make up for it by making extra runs off the ball and doing something different. I came from that moment.”

Gomez said the word ‘resilience’ was written on every SAFC player’s locker and that quality was tested on Saturday.

LA (9-10-4, 31 points) promised to play and limit San Antonio’s chances. 62 minutes.

The sequence leading to the ejection started with Patino being pushed to the ground by Carlos Harvey of the Galaxy, who earned a yellow card. A few minutes later, when Patino was lined up in his area for a penalty for his ensuing free kick, he was shown Red his card and left the pitch without protest.

The USL Championship play-by-play cited the ejection as a result of “vulgar and abusive language”. Marcina said he didn’t know the reason behind the red card, and SAFC defender Conor Maloney said officials told him Patino touched the Los Angeles player’s face.

Tactically, San Antonio’s approach was unwavering, Martina said.

“I still wanted to be aggressive,” Martina said. “This is our home. Credit to the players because the mentality hasn’t changed and it’s hard.”

The Galaxy “just sat down and tried to absorb” from the opening whistle, Martina said. However, LA saw an opportunity for his SAFC club, where he plays for 10 men, and in the 87th minute he scored his kick free from the edge of the semicircle over the 18-yard box.

Josh Druck converted the try, curling the shot over the wall of San Antonio’s defenders and sending it through the fingertips of Jordan Farr.

The goal ended San Antonio’s 500-minute clean sheet run through June 28, the SAFC’s longest extension since 2017.

“I’ve seen another shift in thinking,” Maloney said. “We had to be more aggressive and that’s what we did. In everyone’s mind, we definitely scored and tied this game.”

San Antonio fought back in the fifth minute of injury time. Fabian Garcia hit the desired ball just past midfield, but he fended off a group of players leaping from both sides, landing near the penalty spot and setting up a clean bounce for Gomez.

After scoring the equalizing goal, Gomez sprinted down the field in celebration and felt fatigue starting to set in as the adrenaline was released. Players and coaches could feel the cumulative toll for the group on Saturday after San Antonio pulled off his 1-0 victory in El Paso last Saturday and he posted a 2-0 result in Las Vegas on Wednesday. admitted to having sex.

“Who are these guys from all the way from LA trying to bark in my backyard?” Gomez said. “You have to stick your chest out and say, ‘Listen, there’s a little more in the tank.'”