Real Salt Lake tied with the San Jose Earthquakes heroically in a 2-2 draw on Saturday, July 30, at PayPal Park in San Jose, California. The tie came after a last-minute goal by Savarino prevented an RSL loss. RSL is now in fifth place in the Western Conference standings with 34 points and a record of 9-7-7 this season.
The First Half
The Quakes came into the first half aggressive, dominating the possession time. Things got worse for RSL as defender Justen Glad picked up a handball penalty in the 10th minute. This gave San Jose an opportunity to score early with a penalty kick. Quakes forward Cristian Espinoza scored in the bottom left corner to make the score 1-0.
Quakes defender Nathan Raphael Pelae Cardoso almost scored in the 15th minute but missed his header to the right. Six minutes later RSL midfielder Jasper Löffelsend drilled the equalizer into the bottom right corner to even the score 1-1.
Following the goal, the game went back-and-forth with RSL players Jefferson Savarino and Nick Besler forcing Quakes goalie JT Marcinkowski to make some incredible saves. RSL goalkeeper Zac MacMath made a great save of his own, stopping a potential Eric Remedi goal. The rest of the half went scoreless.
The Second Half
The Quakes kept their gas on the pedal to start the second half, taking four shots within the first nine minutes. Savarino tried to answer for RSL in the 60th but missed his shot to the left after firing from a difficult angle.
Quakes striker Jeremy Ebobiss found the center of the goal in the 62nd minute to help his team retake the lead 2-1. Forward Benjamin Kikanovic fired another shot in the 72nd minute but again missed.
RSL tried to respond, but proceeded to miss three shots within six minutes. This including a Pablo Ruiz shot that forced another Marcinkowski save. The likelihood of a loss loomed nearer until Savarino ricocheted a shot into the net off the tips of Marcinkowski’s hands to even the score 2-2 and create a tie for both teams.
RSL tied the match despite the Quakes leading in possession percentage (62.2% to 38.2%) and shots (14 to 12). Quakes goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski made three saves while RSL goalkeeper Zac MacMath made two and kept RSL in the game.
RSL now heads home to take on the Los Angeles Football Club on Saturday, Aug. 8, at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. The game will begin at 8 p.m. MT and can be streamed on ESPN+.
Photo courtesy of ksl.com.