Aaron Boupendza and Brandon Vazquez scored second-half goals as FC Cincinnati rallied to earn a 2-2 tie with the Philadelphia Union on Saturday night at Chester, Pa.
Vazquez’s goal in the 77th minute allowed league-leading FC Cincinnati (17-4-7, 58 points) to avoid its second straight loss.
Jose Martinez and Daniel Gazdag scored goals for Philadelphia (14-8-5, 47 points), which is 9-1-3 at home this season and 18-1-3 over its past 22 regular-season home matches.
FC Cincinnati played without star captain Luciano Acosta (13 goals), who sat out due to yellow card accumulation.
Saturday’s physical contest included 12 yellow cards — two upgraded to red due to the player’s second yellow of the match.
Philadelphia goalkeeper Andre Blake made four saves, while Cincinnati’s Roman Celentano had three.
The Union had a 15-14 edge in shots with both teams putting six on target.
Cincinnati’s Yerson Mosquera drew his second yellow card of the match in the 83rd minute to leave his team short-handed for the next 11 minutes.
Jack Elliott of the Union was given his second yellow card in the fourth minute of second-half stoppage time to put both teams at 10 players.
Philadelphia took a 1-0 lead in the 23rd minute when Jack McGlynn slid a pass over to Martinez, who unleashed a right-footed blast from outside the box that sailed into the left corner of the net. It was Martinez’s third goal of the season.
The Union struck again in the 37th minute on Gazdag’s penalty kick, which was awarded due to a foul in the box by Celentano in the 33rd minute. Four minutes later, Gazdag stood at the spot and sent a right-footer into the lower left corner for his 12th goal of the season.
Cincinnati subbed in Boupendza at the outset of the second half and he quickly made an impact. Yuya Kubo sent a pass toward the net and Boupendza easily tapped it in with his right foot for his third goal of the season in the 49th minute.
Boupendza had a chance to tie the match in the 64th minute but his header went over the net.
But after a Philadelphia giveaway in the 77th minute, Boupendza sent a sharp left-footed pass to a streaking Vazquez, who tapped it in to knot the score with his sixth tally of the season.
–Field Level Media