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Loons battle back for a 1-1 draw with L.A. Galaxy

Lod, the Loons forward, scored to nullify Sacha Kljestan’s penalty-kick goal for a lot of late drama in a 1-1 draw

MLS: LA Galaxy at Minnesota United FC
Minnesota United midfielder Franco Fragapane (7) controls the ball while Los Angeles Galaxy defender Julian Araujo (2) and Los Angeles Galaxy forward Nick DePuy (20) defend during the second half on Wednesday at Allianz Field in St. Paul.
Matt Krohn/USA Today Sports
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At first, it was Bond, Jonathan Bond.

Then it was Robin Hood, er, Robin Lod.

Bond, the Los Angeles Galaxy goalkeeper, saved six Minnesota United shots Wednesday. Then Lod, the Loons forward, scored to nullify Sacha Kljestan’s penalty-kick goal for a lot of late drama in a 1-1 draw at Allianz Field.

Lod, who is known for his Robin Hood shooting-arrow celebration after goals, saved the day in the 87th minute, after Kljestan put L.A. up only three minutes earlier.

Until Lod’s sliding finish, Minnesota was staring down the barrel of a fourth-straight loss after Michael Boxall was called for a handball on Chicharito’s header, followed by Kljestan beating Loons goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair on the PK.

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After Lod scored, the celebration remained holstered as Loons players tried to wrestle the ball away from a villain Bond. Given the abundance of scoring chances, the Loons, from manager Adrian Heath on down, felt like they should have won the game.

Minnesota (4-5-3) instead ended a three-game-losing skid. L.A. Galaxy (6-4-2) lost for a second straight game.

To stem the skid, Loons manager Adrian Heath held a team meeting before training Tuesday, with responsibility as a major theme. That resolve was tested, and Minnesota fought back.

Lod’s finish tied the club record for goals in MLS play at 21; the Finnish attacker tied Christian Ramirez, Kevin Molino and Darwin Quintero.

The Loons completely dominated the first half but had nothing to show for it. They had 12 shots to two for L.A., but of the four Minnesota was able to put on frame, Bond was able to stop each one.

MNUFC’s front four of Lod, Emanuel Reynoso, Franco Fragapane and Bongi Hlongwane got into a lot of dangerous places. Each had at least one shot on target, with golden opportunities.

In the second half, Fragapane had two straight chances, but Bond saved one and defender Julian Araujo’s header off the line denied the second.

The Loons made three changes to its starting XI after the 3-1 loss to Seattle Sounders on Sunday. Center back Michael Boxall returned from illness and replaced Brent Kallman; Hlongwane stepped in for Abu Danladi; and DJ Taylor came in for Oniel Fisher.

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Chicharito has a team-high five goals, but none in his past six games.

Former Loons left back Chase Gasper, who was traded away two weeks ago, subbed into the game for L.A. in the 75th minute and received a warm reception. He then got a tap on the back from former teammate Lod.

MLS: LA Galaxy at Minnesota United FC
Minnesota United midfielder Robin Lod (17) controls the ball while Los Angeles Galaxy defender Derrick Williams (3) defends during the second half on Wednesday at Allianz Field in St. Paul.
Matt Krohn/USA Today Sports

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Related Topics: MINNESOTA LOONS
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