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Stoppage time heroics keep RSL's unbeaten streak alive in 2-2 draw with Union


A stoppage time save and two second-half goals kept Real Salt Lake's 7-match MLS unbeaten streak alive with a 2-2 home draw against Philadelphia, despite conceding two goals and losing Lovel Palmer to a dubious red card in the 59th minute.

Philadelphia Union's first goal came after Real Salt Lake was caught with Chris Wingert high up the pitch; Carlos Salcedo, sprinting back, slid in looking to clear the ball out of play, but a streaking Conor Casey took a fine touch and played in Sebastian Le Toux for a tapped-in first-half goal.

Midway through the second half, Lovel Palmer was sent off for a tackle that might rightly have been pegged as caution-worthy, but the sending off seemed harsh at best.

Luis Gil, only having just returned from the Under-20 World Cup in which the U.S. failed to progress past the group stages, rose magnificently on a corner and finished with a well-placed header. His substitute appearance — on for Khari Stephenson, who was struggling to make a difference — saw his third goal of the season.

It didn't take long for Conor Casey to equalize for Philadelphia — indeed, it happened less than a minute after Gil's equalizer — when Antoine Hoppenot left Nat Borchers in his dust, with the RSL defender missing out on his tackle. Hoppenot's simple cut back to Casey left plenty of time for an easy, open goal, and the striker placed his shot perfectly. Carlos Salcedo, having left Casey free when he left to cover Hoppenot, and Borchers, whose challenge against Hoppenot was a weak effort, certainly shoulder some of the blame, but it was a precarious position with only three players back — one that made individual mistakes prone toward leading to a goal.

In the 93rd minute, Josh Saunders made the most vital stop of his still-early Real Salt Lake career, keeping Sebastien Le Toux from scoring his second of the match

With but five seconds remaining until the allotted five minutes of stoppage were up, Josh Saunders swung a ball into the box; Olmes Garcia hit a header to the top of the box, and a poor decision from Philadelphia Union defender Raymon Gaddis, whose raised arm hit the ball, saw the referee award a very late penalty.

For a brief, brief moment, Javier Morales's penalty take looked to be heading wide or rebounding back into play off the post, but his curling ball hit the inside of the post instead and rebounded to the opposite side netting.