Real Salt Lake scored their first goal in what seemed like ages but gave up a late goal against Columbus Crew to draw 1-1 on the road.
Ethan Finlay equalized for Columbus Crew right around the 80th minute after he beat the RSL back line (and Abdoulie Mansally specifically) and spectacularly chipped Jeff Attinella. It was harsh on Attinella, who, before that, had made four or five spectacular saves, but when you allow buckets of shots late on, those sorts of things are made all the more likely.
Luis Gil found the goal from a tight angle, picking up the rebound after Columbus Crew goalkeeper Steve Clark could only parry a scorchingly low shot from Abdoulie Mansally. Gil’s shot was perfectly placed at the far post, and with Clark stuck in the middle of his goal, the goalkeeper had no chance of reaching it.
Federico Higuain missed his penalty, and the continued parity of the match was a fair condition: the spot kick was awarded when Rich Balchan was involved in a tangle (at best) with Agustin Viana as a corner kick floated harmlessly out of a dangerous position.
All told, it was the most dangerous Real Salt Lake has looked since beating Colorado Rapids on May 17, and there’s something positive to be taken from that. With a much-changed lineup featuring an entirely changed back line, a non-diamond formation, and only a single striker, a result looked difficult, but for 85 minutes it was completely on the cards.
The match also saw the first start of the season for Carlos Salcedo (his first since the US Open Cup final) and the first in his career for John Stertzer. Both impressed on the night.