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Suarez the Star Again as FC Tulsa Draw Austin Bold FC 2-2

September 9, 2020 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - FC Tulsa News Release

TULSA - It appears nothing will separate FC Tulsa and Austin Bold FC in 2020. Tuesday night featured a 2-2 draw, the third time in 2020 that the sides have ended 90 minutes tied. Each side could rue a missed opportunity in this match. For FC Tulsa, it built a 2-0 first half lead and was in the driver's seat through 40 minutes. The final 60 minutes belonged solely to Austin Bold FC as they put 35 shots up, eight on target. Despite the offensive fireworks, Austin never could never gain a lead.

FC Tulsa forward Darío Suárez continued his scoring tear, notching both goals for Tulsa to give the talisman seven this season. Suárez opened the scoring in the 17' minute when he got on the end of a chipped pass from midfielder Rodrigo da Costa and put it past Austin keeper Diego Restrepo.

Suárez doubled the lead twenty minutes later when he pounced on the rebound off a saved Ariel Martínez shot and slotted home. The goals were number six and seven on the season for the man rightly nicknamed Super Darío as the Cuban forward has now scored five goals in the last three matches.

Austin Bold FC stormed back and cut the lead in half just before the halftime whistle when a shot deflected off the arm of Tulsa defender Bradley Bourgeois. A penalty was awarded and converted by Sonny Guadrrama to give Austin some momentum. The equalizer came just seven minutes after halftime when Fabian Garcia tapped home a rebound from close range.

Despite constant Austin pressure throughout the second half, Tulsa didn't crack, blocking and defending to secure the crucial result.

GOALS

17' TUL - Darío Suárez (Rodrigo da Costa)

37' TUL - Darío Suárez

45'+5 ATX - Sonny Guadarrama (penalty)

52' ATX - Fabian Garcia

STILL EVEN WITH AUSTIN

FC Tulsa and Austin Bold FC each have five matches to go to decide who will earn the final Group D playoff spot. Tied on record, points, and goal differential, Austin has the tiebreaker as it stands with more total goals scored. The tiebreakers in order are total wins (both teams have three), goal differential (both teams are +1) and then total goals scored (Austin leads Tulsa 21-14).

SUÁREZ ON SOME KIND OF STREAK

Darío Suárez is in rare air. Super Darío has five goals in his last three matches, a feat only accomplished by two other players in a three-match stretch this season. His seven goals since August 8 are also tied for the most in the league in that span. The seven total goals in 2020 are tied for fifth most in the USL Championship in 2020 and are just three off the league lead.

MOLOTO SETS CAREER MARK

Earning the start on Tuesday, FC Tulsa midfielder Lebo Moloto appeared in his 150th career USL Championship regular season match. He joins an exclusive club of 33 players all-time to hit that mark. In his regular season career, Moloto has 27 goals and 28 assists. Teammate Cyprian Hedrick has also reached that mark.

FAVORABLE STRETCH RUN

Beginning with Saturday night's Black Gold Derby rivalry at ONEOK Field, FC Tulsa will have four of its final five matches in 2020 at home. Also to its advantage will be that three of the final five will come against the bottom two teams in Group D (twice vs. OKC Energy FC, once at Rio Grande Valley FC). Austin's schedule the rest of the way is much less favorable with only two home matches out of their last five and will have to play Group D leader San Antonio FC twice in the final five matches.

RIVALRY ON TAP

It'll be Round 2 of the Black Gold Derby in 2020 as OKC Energy FC visits FC Tulsa on Saturday at ONEOK Field. The first meeting ended in a 1-1 draw in Oklahoma City, but the final two matches will be played on Tulsa soil. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT.


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