CCL Quarterfinals recap: Montreal advances, DC falls

image, ImpactMontreal.com

by RYAN BRISTER
MLS Beat Writer

Major League Soccer teams had mixed results in their midweek CONCACAF Champions league games, with one team competing an upset to reach the semifinals, and the other failing to meet them there. The final four features one team each from Liga MX and MLS, and two from Costa Rica.

Montreal Impact 1-1 (3-3 agg.) Pachuca

While CBA talks were going down to the wire Tuesday night, the Montreal Impact took care of business on the field. Rookie Cameron Porter saved the day with a goal in the 95th minute to send Montreal through to the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals. 38,104 fans saw the 1-1 draw against Pachuca, which was enough for the Impact for to advance on away goals after a 2-2 in Mexico.

Laurent Ciman committed a penalty in the 79th minute, and Germán Cano slotted it home to give Pachuca lead. Callum Mallace helped Ciman get off the hook with a perfect long ball to Porter for the goal. It was Porter’s first goal as a pro.

The Impact are just the second MLS team to overcome Mexican opposition over two legs in the CCL. They are the first Canadian team to reach the semifinals of the competition.

DC United 2-1 (4-6 agg.) Alajuelense

DC really put themselves in a hole in the first leg, and they were unable to climb out over 90 frigid and rainy minutes on Wednesday night. United needed to hope for a 3-0 home victory in order to advance to the semifinals, and Jairo Arrieta’s goal provided some hope in the 36th minute. But as the conditions grew worse, so did the scoreline. Johan Venegas scored in the 72nd minute to effectively seal the tie. Fabian Espindola’s late penalty was little consolation.

Alajuelense will play Montreal in the semifinals, with the Costa Rican side hosting the first leg on March 18th.

América 2-0 (5-0) agg. Saprissa

This tie was settled with three goals in six minutes during the first leg, but América threw in two more goals at home just to make sure. Jose Guerrero opened the scoring in the 43rd minute, and Osmar Mares completed the rout.

América, the favorites to win the tournament, will face Herediano in the semifinals.

Herediano 2-0 (3-1 agg.) Olimipia

After a 1-1 draw in Honduras, Herediano merely had to handle business at home in the second leg. With two second half goals, they ensured their place in the semifinals. Oscar Granados scored shortly after halftime, and Cristian Lagos’ 64th minute goal provided insurance.

Herediano will host América in two weeks time when the semifinals begin.