Santos Laguna nearly clips streaking Aguilas’ wings, settles for draw

Federico Viñas is unmarked as he heads home the equalizer in stoppage time, earning América a 3-3 draw against Santos Laguna. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
Federico Viñas is unmarked as he heads home the equalizer in stoppage time, earning América a 3-3 draw against Santos Laguna. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images) /
Liga MX Aguilas Santos tie
Leo Suárez (left) and Harold Preciado thought they’d done enough to take down America, but the Aguilas fought back, demonstrating why they are the cream of the Liga MX crop. Two late goals gave América a 3-3 tie vs visiting Santos Laguna. (Photo by CLAUDIO CRUZ/AFP via Getty Images) /

Liga MX leaders erase two-goal deficit to earn draw

América saw its nine-game win streak snapped by Santos Laguna but escaped Estadio Azteca with a 3-3 draw by snatching two late goals.

The Aguilas – No. 1 in the Liga MX Power Rankings – remain atop the Liga MX table, now with 32 points from 15 games, 1 point ahead of Monterrey.

The visiting Guerreros will feel hard done by after squandering a 3-1 lead, done in by an own goal by defender Hugo Rodríguez in minute 88 and a Federico Viñas header in minute 90+7.

Former Aguila Leo Suárez scored twice in the first half, with a Henry Martín goal sandwiched in between. Martín is now tied atop the Liga MX scoring table with 10 goals (even with Pachuca’s Nico Ibáñez).

Harold Preciado added what appeared to be an insurance goal for Santos in minute 64, but the league leaders continued to press forward.

América – the highest scoring team in Liga MX with 34 goals – had more than twice as many shots as the Guerreros (29-13), but both teams managed 8 shots on goal. That comes as no surprise as Santos is the No. 2 in Liga MX in goals scored with 33.

If Eduardo Fentanes’ men could have held onto the lead, they would have climbed to third place in the Liga MX table. Instead, they rose to fourth place, overtaking Tigres. Both northern clubs have 27 points, but the Guerreros have a far better goal differential (+12 to +8).

Bravos stun Tuzos, end home winless streak

Pachuca coach Guillermo Almada made six changes to the line-up that routed Tijuana 6-1 and FC Juárez was able to take advantage as even the five regular starters exhibited indifference.

The Tuzos’ performance was a mirror image of that presented in Sunday’s match: poor passing, indecisiveness, over-dribbling, poor spacing. You name it, Pachuca was guilty of it.

Just 3 minutes in, Gabriel Fernández volleyed home a rebound off his own header and the Bravos were up 1-0.

Tuzos youngster Illian Hernández tied it up six minutes later with a great hustle play, chasing down a rebound and poking it between Alfredo Talavera’s legs from a sharp angle, but bad decision-making ruined several other promising advances by the visitors.

Lazy team defense by Pachuca allowed Alan Medina a free shot at a loose ball deep in the box and the Bravos went into the locker room at the half leading 2-1.

The Tuzos played better in the second half, but the Bravos displayed tactical discipline and kept the explosive Pachuca offense at bay. Talavera was forced to make eight saves, but none really tested him and FC Juárez won its first game at Estadio Olímpico Benito Juárez since Jan. 7, putting an end to its 15-game home winless streak (0-6-9).

The result left Pachuca in third place with 28 points while the Bravos climbed into 12th place – the final Liga MX playoff spot – with 16 points.

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The Bravos-Tuzos contest was left over from Matchday 8, originally scheduled for Aug. 13. Liga MX HQ postponed the game due to an outbreak of violence involving drug cartels in the week leading up to the game.