Collin Martin and Grant Stoneman score, homeside equalize with last second goal
OAKLAND, Calif. (April 13, 2022) – What started as a tight contest on a tough field to play on ended in a wild finish Wednesday night.
Collin Martin and Grant Stoneman scored in the second half but it wasn’t enough as SD Loyal allowed a last second goal in a 2-2 draw against host Oakland Roots in a crazy finish on a chilly night at Laney College Football Stadium.
Collin’s first goal of the season (second with the club) and a Stoneman score (also his first of the season) on a mild bicycle kick had SD Loyal looking at three more points in the Western Conference standings. Instead, coach Landon Donovan’s team gave up the lead twice to earn only a point against an Oakland Roots team that played with 10 men for the final 26 minutes of the wild match.
The draw sees SD Loyal continuing to add points in five consecutive matches and keeps adding to the club’s best start to a season in franchise history.
It wasn’t a fast start to Wednesday’s match played on an artificial surface that had the ball rolling fast and two SD Loyal players leaving early due to injury. Alejandro Guido was subbed off in the 15th minute while Elijah Martin came off in the 61st.
Both teams played to a tightly-contested match in the first half despite SD Loyal (5-1-1, 16 points) having control of the ball as it tried to break through a stifling Oakland Roots (0-3-3, 3 points) defense.
SD Loyal finally broke through with Martin’s goal in the 52nd minute. The midfielder took advantage of an Oakland mistake just outside its penalty box. Collin pressured Oakland defender Matias Fissore, who lost the ball. Andrew Carelton picked up the loose ball and sent it to Martin who was alone inside the penalty box. Martin fired it into the middle of the Oakland goal, catching goalkeeper Benny Diaz away from his line. SD Loyal led 1-0 and it appeared it would open up the floodgates for scoring.
Instead, it was Oakland, who had Tarek Morad sent off for a second yellow in the 64th minute, tying the match 1-1 in the 86th minute. Juan Azocar sent in a cross by Edgardo Rito on a quick play. The Oakland midfielder connected to beat SD Loyal goalkeeper Koke Vegas.
The home side tied the match but that didn’t last long. Stoneman gave SD Loyal a 2-1 lead four minutes later when he got a piece of the ball on a bicycle kick inside the six-yard box. The SD Loyal defender swung his leg and got just enough of the ball to bounce it into the net past Diaz, who again was off his line.
SD Loyal appeared to be closing in on its sixth win but Oakland forward Óttar Magnús Karlsson tied the match four minutes into stoppage time when he sent in a header off a cross by Emrah Klimenta to beat Vegas. The SD Loyal goalkeeper got his hands on the strike but there was enough force on the near point-blank shot to go into the net to tie the match.
The midweek match came after a quick turnaround for SD Loyal as the squad was coming off a 4-1 win at home against Charleston Battery. It will now return to San Diego to host Eastern Conference powerhouse Louisville City FC on Saturday, April 16 (7 p.m.) at Torero Stadium.