Carlos Rivas scores late-game equalizer for Orlando City

Just when it looked like the game was heading into another Orlando City defeat, an unlikely hero stepped up to rescue the Lions a point.

Enter Carlos Rivas.

The Colombian designated player entered the game in the 80th minute for Antonio Nocerino and scored the game-tying goal in stoppage time as Orlando City finished with a 2-2 draw against the New England Revolution on Saturday night at Gillette Stadium.

The Revolution (1-2-7, 10 points) opened the scoring early when Lee Nguyen connected with Diego Fagundez in the box, leaving the Uruguayan to strike the ball past Orlando City goalkeeper Joe Bendik. 

Kevin Molino leveled the scoring in the 30th minute when Adrian Winter made a run on the right flank, whipping in a cross in which found Cyle Larin who wasn’t able to execute on a header. Molino followed up in the play with a left-footed shot to tie the score 1-1.

The Trinidad & Tobago international sustained an unconfirmed injury in the second half, which resulted in Servando Carrasco getting substituted in the 63rd minute.

Juan Agudelo gave Jay Heaps’ men the lead again the 71st minute when Nguyen found the forward for an easy finish. Nguyen finished with two assists.

With the game coming to a close, Rivas scored before the 90th-minute mark when Larin was able to whip in a ball toward the center of the box, finding the winger to strike the ball past Bobby Shuttleworth. 

Lions captain Ricardo Kaká missed Saturday’s game after sustaining a groin injury last week.

Orlando City (2-2-4, 10 points) is back in action when it hosts the New York Red Bulls at Camping World Stadium on Friday at 7 p.m.

Man of the match

Winter did not start in Orlando City’s first game of the season against Real Salt Lake on March 6.

Since then, the speedy midfielder has been named to Adrian Heath’s starting 11 every single time. His tenacity and movement with the ball has somewhat helped anchor the Lions midfield this season. Underrated? Yes. The dark horse of the team? Perhaps.

Follow Mike Gramajo on Twitter (@byMikeGramajo). For more, also follow the OSJ on Twitter (@OSJSoccer).

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