Orange County Blues FC (14-9-5, 46 points) battled to a 1-1 draw with Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 (8-13-6, 30 points) at UBC Thunderbird Stadium on Sunday.
Brenton Griffiths tapped in a corner kick from Pavle Popara to equalize the match in the 50th minute, after WFC2 captain Tyler Rosenlund scored in the 33rd minute. Forward Christofer Ramirez had two early chances for OC in the first half, including a chip that had it gone in, would have been a near clone of Chris Cortez’ goal in Seattle on Friday night.
Vancouver would tally just after the half hour mark, as Tyler Rosenlund collected a rebound off a Marco Bustos shot and fired into the top left corner, past a lunging Josh Cohen, who was making his professional debut in net.
Five minutes into the 2nd half, Griffiths charged into the box on a corner kick, and Popara’s ball floating over WFC2 goalkeeper Marco Carducci and right onto Griffiths’ foot, allowing for an easy tap in to equalize.
Cohen made a fantastic save in the 64th minute, denying a WFC2 attempt while still on the ground from a previous save attempt. From there, the sides traded chances throughout the rest of the match, with the goalkeeping and defense holding tight to a 1-1 draw.
The result moved Orange County into the top two of the Western Conference table, tied with Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC with 46 points each. Orange County closes out the regular season hosting defending USL champion Sacramento Republic FC on Wednesday, September 16th. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. PT.