In distant New Jersey, it was a familiar story for the 2015 Seattle Reign on the road. Seattle dominated possession and dominated chances, and up until the 91st minute looked assured to get out of the Garden State with three points. But yet another injury time concession — this time on a penalty kick — left points on the table. Still, at least this late goal didn't lead to a loss and a road draw is never a terrible result.
Despite Jess Fishlock leaving the last match early with an ankle injury she was in the starting lineup, meaning it was as close to a first choice lineup as the team would get with their two US national team players away. Backup Haley Kopmeyer started for Hope Solo and Kiersten Dallstream started for Megan Rapinoe.
The Reign were clearly the better team, but Sky Blue's keeper Brittany Cameron had an excellent game and her defense came up with some timely desperate defending. Cameron made a number of tough saves, including an impressive double-save in the 52nd minute when Keelin Winters seemed to have a wide open net on a rebound but the Sky Blue keeper stretched out to stop it with her fingertips.
Still, the Reign pressure eventually paid off and in the 76th minute after a corner kick the ball came out to defender Lauren Barnes 25 yards from goal. She fired off a grass-cutter of a shot that skimmed across the top of the turf and by Cameron for the opening goal.
Then as the clock turned to the 90th minute, things got weird. A fairly innocuous long Sky Blue shot was deflected into the air by a defender and Kopmeyer wandered over to take it. But she bobbled the ball and the assistant ref ruled that she had backed over the endline and awarded a corner. The corner delivery fell into a mad scramble in the box right in front of the goal-line, and somewhere in the scrum Jess Fishlock dove down to stop the ball with her arm. After some delay and confusion, the ref awarded the PK to Sky Blue and sent Fishlock with a straight red for an intentional handball.
Nadia Nadim finished the PK to tie the game with Sky Blue's only official shot on goal of the entire match.
A road draw isn't a bad result, but the manner of it will probably sit poorly with the team for the long three week break until another competitive match. The late goal means the team has yet to win on the road and has yet to secure a shutout in five matches this season.
The point puts them at seven, tied for fourth with the Washington Spirit and three behind league leaders Chicago. Their next match is a home friendly against the Chinese national team in their tune-up for the World Cup. Then Seattle returns to league action on May 30 versus the Red Stars, without the suspended Fishlock.