The Tulsa Roughnecks opened a two-game trip to the Pacific Northwest with a heartbreaking 3-2 loss to Vancouver Whitecaps 2 Wednesday night. The Roughnecks, who twice took a lead in the match, surrendered two late goals to suffer the loss.
The defeat overshadowed a two-goal performance from Sammy Ochoa who found the back of the net in each half.
It took the Tulsa captain only 12 minutes to open the scoring against WFC2, who started four players who have seen action in Major League Soccer this season. Ochoa ran onto a long through ball from Carlos Martinez and beat Vancouver goalkeeper Marco Carducci to give the Roughnecks a 1-0 lead.
For the next hour, it looked as if the one goal might be enough for TRFC to grab the full three points from the match. Vancouver’s best chance to beat Jake Feener, who was making his first start of the season in goal for the Roughnecks, came in the 20th minute when a shot from Marco Bustos caromed off the post.
Tulsa carried its 1-0 lead into the locker room and was still protecting the one-goal cushion halfway through the second stanza.
The Whitecaps used two of their substitutions, bringing on Daniel Haber in the 60th minute and former Oklahoma City Energy striker Kyle Greig in the 67th. Both subs would play key roles in WFC2’s comeback.
Greig had been on the field less than minute when right back Kadin Chung beat Gary Cennerazzo and Kyle MacLeod with a spin move in the box before providing a cross. Greig was able to head the delivery past Feener to even the score at 1-1.
The Roughnecks retook the lead in the 79th minute. On a corner kick, Adriano Pellegrino provided a perfect cross that Ochoa was able to head past Carducci to put Tulsa back in front 2-1.
The lead would not last. Six minutes later, Kianz Froese put the teams back on level terms when the Roughnecks backline was unable to clear the danger of a Whitecaps’ attack. Froese found the ball in space and rolled a shot past Feener to tie the match at 2-2.
The Whitecaps were able to find the winner one minute into stoppage time. Substitute Haber was left unmarked near the penalty spot, and his right-footed shot found the back of the net to give Vancouver the full three points.
The defeat extends Tulsa’s winless streak to six straight matches. The Roughnecks remain on four points with a 1-5-1 record.
WFC2 remain unbeaten at 4-0-2 and improved its point total to 14.
The Roughnecks will get another chance to end their winless streak Sunday night in Seattle when they take on Sounders 2. Like Tulsa, Seattle has only one win on the season with six points from a 1-3-3 record.
Kickoff at Seattle’s Starfire Stadium is scheduled for 9:00pm CDT on Sunday.