Late Discoveries strike salvages draw with Railhawks U-23’s

bmccormick@heraldonline.comJuly 2, 2014 

FC Carolina Discoveries striker Daniel Revivo scored in the 90th minute to rescue a 2-2 draw with Carolina Railhawks Under-23’s on Wednesday night at Manchester Meadows. Despite the late fight-back, Discoveries coach David Carton was peeved by his side’s inability to grab an NPSL home win, and the accompanying three points.

“Really feels like we dropped two (points),” said Carton. “The tempo was slow. We looked heavy-legged, we looked tired, we lacked any real conviction or pace in the final third, so, we got punished.”

Railhawks (2-3-4) coach Dewan Bader wasn’t thrilled with the result either. His team took a 2-1 lead in the 88th minute, only to allow Revivo to slide a low finish in off the post barely a minute later.

“We’re a little disappointed to go up with two or three minutes left and it’s within your grasp and then you give it back, but I thought the boys played well,” said Bader, whose team arrived in Rock Hill only an hour before the match kicked off on a bus without air conditioning.

Just like the first time these two teams met this season, Discoveries (3-3-2) and the Railhawks were tied 0-0 at the half. The orange-clad visitors broke the deadlock in the 59th minute. Zabarle Kollie was slipped through on goal, and the powerful forward staved off Jordi Lluch’s challenge, before finishing past Guilherme Avilar and into the corner for a 1-0 lead.

Two minutes later, a poor defensive header by a Discoveries defender let Nyambi Jabang in one-on-one, but Avilar smothered Jabang’s shot with his belly to avert the danger.

Carton threw on forward Zhuvonte Wilson around the 60-minute mark and the sub made an impact right away with his pace. The Charlotte 49er drew a foul on the edge of the penalty area, before making a run to open up Stephen Nsereko for a rocketed strike on goal that just flew high. Wilson’s pace finally told in the 78th minute when he got around the outside, walked down the touchline and slid a ball across the gaping goalmouth where Nsereko was waiting all alone to smack in Discoveries’ first equalizer of the night. On a night where the hosts looked sluggish, Wilson was lively in his 30-minute cameo.

“He stretches teams a bit,” said Carton. “He’s a young kid that’s got a bright future.”

The goal was just reward for Nsereko, the Ugandan former Winthrop player, who tirelessly powered up and down the left flank all night.

“Stephen was fabulous. He’s a top pro,” said Carton. “The amount of football he’s played in his career at this stage, and to still have the energy and the enthusiasm. He’s infectious, and in this football community, he should be revered.”

Just when it looked like Discoveries would push on for a winner, they got gut-punched by the visitors. The Railhawks played a short corner kick to Teddy Mullins, who dinked a ball into the box, directly into the path of onrushing defender Connor Donavon. The U.S. Under-20 National Team member thumped a header past a helpless Avilar and into the back of the net for a 2-1 lead.

But Carton’s group didn’t fold. Thiago Andrade, the Brazilian Queens University product who had one of his quieter nights, slipped a fine pass onto Revivo’s boot, and the former Winthrop striker made no mistake from 12 yards out, firing in off the left post to tie the match 2-2, just as a big thundercloud full of lightning encroached on Manchester Meadows. No win, but also no loss.

“We didn’t give up, and a point is better than no point,” said a chagrined Carton, “so we’ll take it that way.”

Bret McCormick •  803-329-4032; Twitter: @BretJust1T

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