Daniel Salloi continued his sublime season with an impressive 92nd-minute equalizer as Sporting Kansas City (11-4-5, 38 points) rescued a late 1-1 draw against the Portland Timbers (7-9-3, 24 points) on Wednesday night at Children’s Mercy Park.

The Timbers led for most of the evening, landing their punch in the 17th minute off a Felipe Mora header, but Sporting’s spirited pursuit of a leveler was rewarded in second-half stoppage time when Salloi’s brilliant snapshot from 18 yards beat Portland goalkeeper Steve Clark at the near post. The 25-year-old forward has scored or assisted in six consecutive regular season appearances, two shy of tying the club record, and leads MLS with 18 combined goals (12) and assists (six) this season.

Wednesday’s result saw Sporting move into second place in the Western Conference, one point behind leaders Seattle Sounders FC, ahead of a crucial Rivalry Week showdown at Minnesota United FC (7-6-6, 27 points) on Saturday afternoon. Sporting’s seventh match in 22 days will kick off at 2:30 p.m. CT with national coverage on ESPN, the ESPN app and ESPN Deportes as well as local radio calls on Sports Radio 810 WHB and La Grande 1340 AM.

Taking the field for the sixth time in 19 days, Sporting deployed an unchanged lineup from Saturday’s 2-0 road win over FC Dallas. Celebrating his 35th birthday, Sporting defender Graham Zusi reached a major milestone in his 307th regular season match on Wednesday, passing LA Galaxy legend Cobi Jones for most appearances by a one-club player in MLS history.

Sporting fell behind for the seventh time in 10 MLS home matches this year when Portland winger Marvin Loria swung in a teasing cross that Mora nodded past goalkeeper Tim Melia. Mora leads Portland with seven goals in 2021, while Loria has a team-best five assists.

The hosts almost conjured a quick response in the 25th minute. Midfielder Gadi Kinda played an incisive pass to forward Alan Pulido, whose deft touch found Salloi on the left side of the penalty area. The Hungarian cut past his defender and unleashed a side-footed effort that Clark pushed aside.

A pedestrian first half gave way to more action in the second period. Clark was forced to make a reflex save on the hour mark when Kinda rose to snap a header goalward off a delectable Zusi delivery from the right channel. Sporting dominated possession for extended periods, ending with 69% of the ball, but Portland would threaten 15 minutes later when a costly turnover allowed substitute Diego Valeri to chip a close-range shot inches wide of the target.

Portland continued to defend deep but could do nothing to prevent Salloi from finding the back of the net on 92 minutes. Drifting into the central third, Pulido spread the ball wide left to Sporting’s in-form attacker 40 yards from goal. Salloi glided down the left flank, squared up defender Pablo Bonilla and hammered a quick-trigger blast just inside the near post.

The superb play extended Sporting’s club-record home scoring streak to 25 regular season matches, the longest active run in MLS. Manager Peter Vermes’ side also leads MLS with 18 points gained from losing positions in 2021, four more than any other team.

2021 MLS Regular Season | Match 20
Children's Mercy Park | Kansas City, Kansas
Attendance: 17,081
Weather: 84 degrees and sunny

Sporting KC 1-1 Portland Timbers
Sporting Kansas City (11-4-5, 38 points)
Portland Timbers (7-9-3, 24 points)

Sporting Kansas City: Tim Melia; Graham Zusi, Ilie Sanchez, Andreu Fontas, Luis Martins; Remi Walter, Roger Espinoza (Khiry Shelton 80'), Gadi Kinda; Johnny Russell (C), Alan Pulido, Daniel Salloi
Subs Not Used: John Pulskamp, Amadou Dia, Kayden Pierre, Roberto Puncec, Kaveh Rad, Cam Duke, Grayson Barber, Wilson Harris

Portland Timbers: Steve Clark; Josecarlos Van Rankin (Pablo Bonilla 46'), Bill Tuiloma, Dario Zuparic, Claudio Bravo; Renzo Zambrano (Diego Valeri 71'), Diego Chara (C), Cristhian Paredes; Marvin Loria (Sebastian Blanco 64'), Felipe Mora (George Fochive 64'), Dairon Asprilla (Yimmi Chara 46')
Subs Not Used: Aljaz Ivacic, Larrys Mabiala, Blake Bodily, Jaroslaw Niezgoda

Scoring Summary:
POR -- Felipe Mora 7 (Marvin Loria 5) 17'
SKC -- Daniel Salloi 12 (Alan Pulido 3) 90+2'

Misconduct Summary:
SKC -- Daniel Salloi (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 25'
POR -- Diego Chara (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 28'
POR -- Josecarlos Van Rankin (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 43'
SKC -- Alan Pulido (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 62'
POR -- Pablo Bonilla (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 77'
POR -- Diego Valeri (yellow card; not retreating) 84'

Match Statistics
Shots on Goal
Corner Kicks

Referee: Ismail Elfath
Assistant Referee: Peter Balciunas
Assistant Referee: Jeremy Kieso
Fourth Official: Brandon Stevis
VAR: David Gantar
AVAR: Kyle Atkins