FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Typically, when a team allows a backbreaking, go-ahead goal in stoppage time, the final whistle screeches before they get the chance to regain their composure.
But Saturday’s game was anything but typical for the Revolution, even with the postseason out of reach.
Instead of dwelling on their misfortune following Joel Lindpere’s 91st-minute goal, they quickly reasserted themselves. And four minutes later, Darrius Barnes equalized to grab a 1-1 draw.
So much for playing out the string.
“There is so much to fight for,” Revolution head coach Jay Heaps said after the game. “We are in the process of building something. We took a lot of steps forward; we’ve obviously taken a few steps back.”
There’s no debating it’s been a season that’s seen more valleys than peaks for the Revs, who currently sit in eighth place. But win, lose or draw, the message hasn’t deviated: Never give up.
That message came to fruition on Saturday. After holding the Red Bulls for 90 minutes, the Revolution were anxious to score one before the gun. But only seconds into stoppage time, Lindpere dealt a severe blow to that idea. And yet, even after his shot crashed the back of the net, the Revolution refused to give in to the temptation of throwing in the towel.
“When they got that goal, we didn't let it deflate us,” Revolution defender Darrius Barnes said after the game. “We kept pushing. We got numbers forward and kept putting numbers into the box. When you put balls into the box, anything can happen.”
What happened next was an unequivocal testament to the team’s spirit. Seconds after he was beat to a long Bobby Shuttleworth ball, Barnes shook it off, then ventured forward into the box, ready for the next available chance.
Two seconds later, Ryan Guy crossed it toward Barnes, who towered over Tim Cahill to redirect it through. And just like that, the Revolution had shown that they wouldn’t go down without a fight, regardless of where they sat in the standings.
“I was just trying to cause havoc in the box,” Barnes said. “It came in a perfect spot and I was able get in front of the goalkeeper and put it in the back of the net.”
Sure, Heaps would’ve been happier to pick up three points at home instead of salvaging only one. But, given the circumstances, he came away impressed by what he saw during the twilight of Saturday’s tilt.
“I thought that when we went down the goal late, we showed a nice fight,” Heaps said. “That, to me, is probably the most positive to take from the game.”