It all happened almost as quickly as the afternoon temperatures rise in the Sonoran Desert this time of year.
FC Tucson was within minutes of tasting its first loss since May 5 and then within a few ticks of the clock from a fourth straight 1-1 draw.
Almost magically, a team that couldn't put the ball in the net for the first 86 minutes scored twice - on a header by Phillipe Garre and a left-footed strike by local lad Donny Toia - to pull out a 2-1 victory over the Orange County Blue Star on Saturday night at Kino Sports Complex North Field No. 5.
The rally allowed Tucson to keep pace with Ventura County in the Southwest Division, with 24 points in 11 USL Premier Development League matches. The Ventura County Fusion, which won Friday and Saturday, is first with 26 points in 11 matches.
"That was huge," said Eli Galbraith-Knapp, who was next to Garre during his header. "Especially with a minute left and fighting hard all day. It was tremendous work by everyone throughout the whole 90 minutes."
Actually it was 95 minutes with stoppage time, and FC Tucson needed almost every second.
After struggling to find opportunities and not making the most of them for the majority of the match, FC Tucson evened it at 1 in the 87th minute when Garre headed down a corner from Carlos Montes.
Not happy to just come away with a point, FC Tucson again pushed forward. It was a moment of brilliance, luck and tenaciousness by Toia that resulted in the match-winner just six minutes later.
About 20 yards in front of the goal, Toia managed to shirk a trio of defenders multiple times and then find an opening to fire a low shot home and into the back of the net.
"When that chance came, I just never gave up and just took the chance that I had," said Toia. "I looked up, and I just saw the far post wide open and I just cracked it."
He then ran directly to the sideline and leaped the advertising boards to celebrate with the crowd.
It helped erase a tough 85 minutes for the men in black.
"We only played for about 10 minutes tonight," coach Rick Schantz said with a chuckle. "We got in the locker room at halftime, and all the guys were arguing and yelling at each other. And I left them alone for about five minutes. I went back in there, and all I told them is that we're a family. That nothing good will come if we play as individuals. We have to come together as a unit."