Atlanta United 2 drew El Paso Locomotive FC 2-2 at Fifth Third Bank Stadium on Saturday night after weather delayed kick off by an hour and a half. Tristan Trager scored two goals to record his second-consecutive brace, replicating his tally from Wednesday’s game against Charleston Battery.
El Paso opened the scoring in the 4th minute. A Locomotive FC corner fell to Eder Borelli, who touched the ball into open space and prevented the opportunity from being cleared by the Atlanta defense. Ricardo Zacarias found Luis Solignac with a first-time cross and the striker took a quick touch before slotting in his team-leading seventh goal of the season.
Trager netted the equalizer for Atlanta in the 11th minute. Raimar intercepted a pass in the offensive third as El Paso failed to play out of its half. The Brazilian found Robbie Mertz on the left edge of the penalty area and the Atlanta captain beat two defenders on the dribble before lofting a weighted ball to the back post. Trager was there to meet it, heading it past goalkeeper Evan Newton.
The duo of Mertz and Trager combined again to take a 2-1 advantage for the hosts. Mertz picked up possession on the halfway line before putting Trager through on goal with a pass. The Air Force Academy alumnus ran into the El Paso box, composed himself and found the back of the net with his left foot for his fifth goal in a week.
The Atlanta defense held strong until second-half stoppage time, as Eric Calvillo converted a free kick to steal a point late on.
ATL UTD 2 (4-12-2, 14 points) finishes out its two-match homestand against Birmingham Legion on Wednesday, July 6 (7:30 p.m., ESPN+).
Atlanta 2, El Paso 2
Fifth Third Bank Stadium
Shots: 25-13 El Paso
Shots on Target: 9-4 El Paso
Corner kicks: 10-1 El Paso
Fouls committed: 17-11 El Paso
Possession: 62.8-37.2 El Paso
Passing Accuracy: 81.5-73.8 El Paso
ELP – Luis Solignac 4’ (Ricardo Zacarías)
ATL – Tristan Trager 11’ (Robbie Mertz)
ATL – Tristan Trager 17’ (Robbie Mertz)
ELP – Eric Calvillo 90+1’ (unassisted)
ELP – Aaron Gomez 34’ (yellow)
ELP – Andrew Fox 35’ (yellow)
ELP – Ricardo Zacarias 40’ (yellow)
ATL – Jackson Conway 44’ (yellow)
ATL – Robbie Mertz 68’ (yellow)
ATL – Nelson Orji 89’ (yellow)
ELP – Ricardo Zacarias 90+4’ (2nd yellow/red)
ATL UTD 2 STARTING LINEUP
Vicente Reyes; Grant Howard, Noah Cobb, Nelson Orji; David Mejía, Robbie Mertz ©, Ajani Fortune (Nick Firmino – 71’), Darwin Matheus (Toni Tiente - , Raimar (Luke Brennan – 60’); Jackson Conway (Andy Sullins – 71’), Tristan Trager.
Substitutes not used: Justin Garces, Efrain Morales, Erik Centeno.
EL PASO LOCOMOTIVE STARTING LINEUP
Evan Newton; Matt Bahner, Eder Borelli (Martin Payares – 90+7’), Andrew Fox, Nick Hinds (Noe Coutino – 65’); Richie Ryan © (Christiano Francois – 78’), Sebastian Velásquez (Eric Calvillo – 65’), Dylan Mares (Ander Egiluz – 78’), Aaron Gómez, Ricardo Zacarías; Luis Solignac.
Substitutes not used: Philipp Beigl, Emmanuel Sonope.
Jose Carlos Rivero (referee), Zach McWhorter (assistant), Kevin Huet (assistant), Kyle Johnston (fourth official)
- Tristan Trager recorded his second-consecutive brace
- Robbie Mertz assisted two goals on the night
- Robbie Mertz recorded his fourth assist of the season, a team high
- Vicente Reyes made seven saves, a career high