October 31, 2015
FINISHING WITH A DRAW
Scorpions tie Minnesota 2-1
BLAINE, Minnesota - With a late goal by Minnesota Untied, the San Antonio had to settle for a season ending 2-2 draw at NSC Stadium Saturday night.
Billy Forbes was a handful for the Minnesota defense all night long, and his frequent forays forward finally found pay dirt in the 54th minute. The Turks and Caicos international got behind the Loons on a counterattack and he motored into the right side of their 18-yard-box. When the United defense collapsed, Forbes sent a perfect square ball to striker Giuseppe Gentile and he easily tapped home for his second goal of the season. The assist on the play was Forbes' eighth of the year, eclipsing the seven helpers he had in his 2014 rookie season.
The Loons knotted proceedings up at 1-1 when former Scorpion Pablo Campos converted a penalty kick in the 70th. The spot kick was set up when Tyler Gibson was called for what looked to be a light foul in the box.
The Scorpions were awarded a penalty of their own in the 85th minute when Kris Tyrpak put on a dribbling display to befuddle the United defense and force Minnesota goalie Sammy Ndjock into fouling him in the area. Scorpions midfielder Rafael Castillo roofed the ensuing penalty for his eighth goal of the year, but the lead wasshort lived. In the second minute of added time, United's Kevin Venegas was able to get a foot on a Kalif Alhassan free kick and push the ball past Scorpions goalie Daniel Fernandes for the final score in the 2-2 tie.
Minnesota dominated possession in the first half, but outside of a long-range attempt from Alhassan the home side struggled to turn that into real scoring opportunities. Late in the half, the Scorpions began to turn things around as they spent much of the final 10 minutes before the halftime whistle in the attacking third. San Antonio had multiple set piece opportunities off of free kicks and corner kicks, but the best chance was a Castillo long-range strike in the 40th minute.
After Gentile earned a free kick when he was fouled on the far right wing, Castillo sent in a hard, curling shot on goal that Ndjock was forced to punch. Adrian Cann was able to recycle the ball and it eventually fell back to Castillo, who unleashed from 20 yards away, forcing a diving save from Ndjock.
The Scorpions finish the Fall season at 4-9-7, 19 pts (7-13-10, 31 pts overall), while Minnesota, which will visit Ottawa next Sunday for a semifinal, finishes at 11-3-6, 39 pts/14-5-11, 53pts).