It was a tough year for the Carolina RailHawks, but they still went into Saturday night's matchup against the Portland Timbers with a slim hope of making the playoffs. Although the ’Hawks prevailed, 1-0, on a heart-stopping finish, the result from the near-simultaneous Montreal-Minnesota match ended their season.
Still, fans and players go to their winter's rest with the memory of a thrilling finale to the season's final game, in which Martin Nuñez--named before the game as the team's co-offensive player of the year--came up big in the last, desperate minute of stoppage time.
A crucial uncredited assist was provided by Mauricio Segovia, who battled the goalkeeper for the ball on the decisive play. Segovia, a huge defender, had been inserted only moments before as a sort of "Hail Mary substitution" to use his size against the Portland keeper. It worked.
UPDATE on Sept. 22: Upon repeated careful viewings of this video, it appears that it is remotely possible that PERHAPS one, two or possibly three ’Hawks may have been offside. If you disagree, please explain in the comments.