Austin FC scores at home but can’t secure the points against Vancouver

Austin FC

Austin FC’s Tomas Pochettino, front, heads the ball away from Vancouver Whitecaps forward Cristian Dajome, right, and defender Jake Nerwinski, back, during the first half of an MLS soccer match Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Thomas)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Jon Gallagher’s header in the 86th minute was inches away from equalizing Austin FC with Vancouver Wednesday night.

Instead, it’s another close call and another game that didn’t go Austin FC’s way.

Austin lost its third straight game, losing to the Whitecaps 2-1 at Q2 Stadium to drop deeper into the cellar of the Major League Soccer Western Conference standings. Austin has 16 points in 19 matches during its inaugural season. Vancouver, which is in 12th place just ahead of Austin, moved four points clear of Verde with the win.

Brian White finished off a Vancouver counter attack, scoring the decisive goal Wednesday and breaking a 1-1 game in the 74th minute.

Aside from Gallagher’s header over the crossbar, Verde had several decent looks at the tying goal in the final 20 minutes of the match.

Despite Vancouver’s lopsided edge on corner kicks to start the game, it was Austin FC captain Alex Ring that struck first. Ring’s header sailed over Maxime Crépeau’s outstretched arms and into the corner for a 1-0 Austin lead in the 37th minute.

Designated player Sebastian Driussi provided the assist to Ring. Driussi was questionable to play after leaving Saturday’s game at Real Salt Lake with a knock.

Vancouver got their own goal off a corner kick in the second half as the game opened up for the offenses.

In the 52nd minute, Jake Nerwinski picked up the rebound when Austin FC goalkeeper Brad Stuver couldn’t handle the initial header toward the net from Vancouver’s corner kick.

The loss is a tough blow for Austin FC’s hopes of reaching the postseason. This current stretch of games pits Austin against the other bottom teams in the conference. This is their chance to make a move and get near the playoff line of seventh place in the standings ahead of the home stretch of the season.

Austin plays five of its next seven games at home. Although, Verde only has eight points out of its eight matches at Q2 Stadium this season.

Verde will host Portland Saturday night at Q2 Stadium at 8 p.m. You can watch the game on the CW Austin.

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