Jon Gallagher scored an early opener, but Ilie Sanchez and Gadi Kinda struck for a pair of late goals, sending Sporting Kansas City to a 2-1 victory over 10-man Austin FC in an entertaining match at Children's Mercy Park on Sunday.

Gallagher put Austin FC in the driver's seat with the early finish, and the visitors managed to maintain that lead into the second half. But SKC would strike twice following a 67th-minute red card to Austin FC captain Alex Ring, giving the home side all three points.

Austin FC struck for a shocking opener just seven minutes into the contest, as Gallagher finished off one of the best assists of the season so far from Jared Stroud. The former New York Red Bulls man hit Gallagher in stride with a highlight-reel cross from the right side, allowing for a well-taken finish to cap off a gorgeous team goal.

Sporting turned up the pressure in the aftermath of the goal, racking up a handful of chances that narrowly missed equalizing the contest as part of a back-and-forth first half. Perhaps the best of those looks for the hosts came just after the half-hour mark when Daniel Salloi got free on a breakaway against Austin goalkeeper Brad Stuver, who made a fantastic kick-save to allow his team to maintain the 1-0 lead.

Austin also had their chances to double the lead before the halftime whistle, most notably off a rocket distance shot off the foot of Tomas Pochettino that rang off the crossbar in the 34th minute.

The visitors would be dealt a big blow as they tried to protect that 1-0 lead in the second half, when Ring was sent off in the 67th minute after a challenge on Ilie was deemed worthy of a second yellow card by referee Ted Unkel, forcing Austin to finish the match with 10 men.

Sporting came inches from a leveler in the 74th minute when Salloi ran onto a set-up from Gianluca Busio and uncorked a laser shot in the box that looked bound for goal, but wound up glancing off the woodwork. They then had another golden chance just minutes later off a corner kick that was headed back across goal by Kaveh Rad and right into the path of Andreu Fontas, who saw his close-range header go just over the crossbar.

But the hosts finally found the breakthrough leveler in the 82nd minute through a tally from Ilie, who rose up to meet a corner kick from Johnny Russell and headed home the finish. That set the stage for the dramatic late winner from second-half substitute Kinda, who sent home a flicked header right on the stroke of second-half stoppage time off an assist from Khiry Shelton.

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Goals

  • 7' - ATX - Jon Gallagher | WATCH
  • 82' - SKC - Ilie | WATCH
  • 90' - SKC - Gadi Kinda | WATCH

Three Things

  • THE BIG PICTURE: For a while, it seemed like the goal was never going to come for SKC, as the finishing touch eluded them despite racking up chances for much of the night. In the end, though, it was probably a fair result in what was one of the more entertaining matches of the season so far from a neutral's perspective. They were done in by the red card and pair of late concessions, but Austin have still looked impressive to start their expansion campaign, going toe-to-toe with a strong Western Conference adversary.
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Kinda's winner and Ring's red card may have each been more consequential to the final outcome, but the best highlight of the match was Austin's opener, which was set up by a flat-out ridiculous dime from Stroud. You're not going to see very many better passes than this all season.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: A 1-1 draw would have been disappointing for SKC given the amount of chances they had, but Kinda ensured that they'd take all three points. The dynamic Israeli attacker gets the honors for the winning header, which sent the home crowd into bedlam.

Next Up

  • SKC: Wednesday, May 12 at Houston Dynamo FC | 8:30 pm ET (MLS LIVE on ESPN+)
  • ATX: Saturday, May 15 at LA Galaxy | 3:30 pm ET (Univision, TUDN, Twitter)

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