The Tulsa Roughnecks FC suffered its cruelest loss of the season Sunday afternoon in Kansas City in a 3-1 defeat to the Swope Park Rangers. The Rangers broke a tie game with a 90th minute penalty kick, then added a third in stoppage time to produce the victory.
The loss leaves Tulsa on 15 points with a 5-6-0 record. Swope Park improves to 16 points with a 5-4-1 record. The Rangers also vaulted the Roughnecks in the USL Wester Conference table, moving into seventh position while TRFC falls into the eighth and final playoff spot.
The Roughnecks seemed certain of getting something out of the match that featured even play from both sides. The critical play came at the edge of the penalty area when defender Jorge Corrales was judged by referee Jon Freemon to have tripped Kharlton Belmar. Substitute Mark Gonzalez slotted the ensuing penalty kick into the lower left corner of the goal to give the Rangers the go-ahead goal.
The first half was the tale of two halves. Swope Park owned the majority of the possession for the first 20 minutes before the Roughnecks took control over the final 25 minutes. The best chance of the half came from Tulsa’s Ian Svantesson, but his header off a corner kick from Juan Caffa was saved by Swope Park goalkeeper Adrian Zendejas.
The second half began very similar to the first 45 minutes with the Rangers owning most of the early possession, and it paid off in the 56th minute with the first goal of the match. Cameron Iwasa found space just outside the penalty area and buried a shot into the top corner of the goal. TRFC goalkeeper Fabian Cerda had no chance on the shot as Swope Park took a 1-0 lead.
The goal brought the Roughnecks back into the match as they picked up the offensive pressure, and it finally paid off in the 75th minute. Joey Calistri sent in a cross from the right side, near the goal line, which was deflected into the goal by Rangers defender Oumar Ballo. The own goal leveled the score at 1-1, setting the stage for the late drama.
The Roughnecks were looking to become only the second away team to take points from a Rangers home match, but that changed with the penalty kick call. The PK goal from Gonzalez was his fourth of the season and left TRFC with a cruel fate.
Seconds later, Gonzalez added insult to injury when Tulsa was caught pushing for an equalizer. On a goal kick, the midfielder found himself one-on-one with Cerda, and he rocketed a shot past the TRFC keeper to make it 3-1 with what was the final kick of the match.
The Roughnecks will have little time to mourn the loss as they will return to action midweek in a meeting with MLS side FC Dallas in the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. The match will be played in Dallas on the campus of Southern Methodist University. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
Swope Park Rangers 0 Tulsa Roughnecks FC 0
June 11, 2017 – Children’s Mercy Victory Field in Kansas City
SPR – Cameron Iwasa (Parker Maher) 56’
TUL – Oumar Ballo (Own goal) 75’
SPR – Mark Gonzalez (Penalty kick) 90+1’
SPR – Mark Gonzalez (Lebo Moloto) 90+3’
TUL – Francisco Ugarte (caution) 11’
SPR – Kharlton Belmar (caution) 20’
TUL – Pasha Kondrakhin (caution) 86’
Tulsa Roughnecks FC: Fabian Cerda, Jorge Corrales, Modou Jadama, Francisco Ugarte, Koskuke Kimura, Collin Fernandez (Brady Ballew 78), Paris Gee (Bradley Bourgeois 70), Joey Calistri, Juan Caffa-©, Joaquin Rivas, Ian Svantesson (Pasha Kondrakhin 70).
Shots: 12; Shots On-Goal: 6; Saves: 4; Fouls: 8; Corners: 8; Offsides: 6.
Swope Park Rangers: Adrian Zendejas, Parker Maher, Liam Doyle, Oumar Ballo, Dakota Barnathan, Christian Duke, James Musa, Felipe Hernandez (Lebo Moloto 60), Kharlton Belmar, Robert Mirosavic (Cameron Iwasa 46), Daniel Selbol (Mark Gonzalez ).
Shots: 14; Shots On-Goal: 7; Saves: 6; Fouls: 7; Corners: 3; Offsides: 3.
TRFC's Kosuke Kimura battles Kharlton Belmar in Sunday's loss. (Photo by Nick Tre. Smith/Swope Park Rangers)