RailHawks 4, Silverbacks 4:
Published: Apr 16, 2012 03:25 PM
Modified: Apr 17, 2012 11:00 PM
CARY - Colin Clarke’s home debut as coach for the Carolina RailHawks ended with him in the middle of the action at WakeMed Soccer Park on Saturday.
With the score tied at 4 in stoppage time, Atlanta’s Nico Colaluca – who had just been given a foul – slapped at Carolina’s Brian Ackley as he tried to complete a throw-in in front of the RailHawks’ bench, and soon the two were fighting – with Clarke caught in the middle.
The fourth referee hit the ground and more players ran in.
By the time all was broken up, the main referee issued red cards to Ackley and Colaluca and abandoned the match.
It was a wild end to a wild night in which Carolina lost a 2-0 lead, then allowed a go-ahead goal after the Silverbacks went to 10 men. The RailHawks scored the equalizer in the 90th minute.
“Going forward (in attack), we were tremendous,” Clarke said. “Defensively, we weren’t good enough today.
“If you can’t head balls out of your own box and make tackles out of your own box, you’re going to give up chances.”
The RailHawks went ahead in the second minute, as Mike Palacio gathered a cleared ball outside the box and fired a shot that took an Atlanta deflection to score.
Carolina (0-0-2) got its second goal in the 38th minute after Nick Zimmerman intercepted an Atlanta back pass and placed his shot into the open net. That 2-0 lead evaporated by halftime.
In the second half, Atlanta (0-0-2) scored its third consecutive goal on a corner kick from Ciaran O’Brien to Willie Hunt.
In the 74th minute, a free kick taken from defender Kupono Low jump-started the RailHawks’ third goal, going to forward Jason Garey, who gave the assist to Zimmerman.
With the RailHawks facing their second deficit after a score by the Silverbacks in the 80th minute, reserve Tiyi Shipalane centered a pass to Brian Shriver, and the North Carolina graduate scored in the 90th minute.