Ben Mines was red carded in the 70th minute, forcing Red Bull II to play a man down the rest of the match.
MONTCLAIR, N.J. – Ten-man Red Bull II could not hold onto a lead at home not once, but twice and settled for a 2-2 draw with North Carolina FC in United Soccer League action at MSU Soccer Park Tuesday night.
Donovan Ewolo scored in the 90th minute to equalize for North Carolina.
The result moved NCFC (8-9-7, 31 points) within points away from a playoff spot. NYRBII (34) fell to 9-7-7.
“Almost feels like a loss because the coaching staff did a really good job of preparing us for this game,” said NYRB II defender Lucas Stauffer, who scored a goal.
The game started quietly, as NCFC sat deep, opting to hold back an eager New York attack. NCFC began to get involved in the attack and created several chances later in the half. However, Marcel Kandziora’s acrobatic attempt in the 28th minute was off target and Daniel Rios’ on-target strike in the 37th minute was saved.
On the other side of the field, the hosts took its chance and scored with a well-placed shot in the 39th minute. José Aguinaga found space from nearly 20 yards out at the top of the box and unleashed a low, pacey effort toward the bottom corner of the goal. Aguinaga’s shot slid just past the outstretched arm of goalkeeper Alex Tambakis before clipping the post and bouncing into the net.
Immediately following the break, NCFC found an equalizer through Daniel Rios in the 46th minute. Scoring his 13th goal of the USL season, Rios was in the right place at the right time. The Mexican loanee tucked home a cross from Kandziora just a few yards out.
The score wouldn’t hold long though, as Red Bulls II found another goal only six minutes later. Stauffer completed a far-post run and chipped Tambakis to restore New York’s lead.
“It’s nice scoring goals, but at the end of the day it’s a result driven game,” Stauffer said. “We did get a point, but we were really upset not to get three points tonight.”
Following a red card to Red Bull II’s Ben Mines in the 70th minute, forcing Red Bulls II to go down to 10 men, NCFC pressed hard for another goal.
NCFC dominated the rest of the match while searching for the equalizer. The visitors came close several times as time winded down, but were forced to wait until the 90th minute.
The side completed its second comeback of the night and recorded the equalizer via Ewolo. After Marios Lomis forced a diving save from goalkeeper Evan Louro, Ewolo cleaned up the rebound to level the match with his third goal of the year.