Real Salt Lake: RSL tops L.A. 2-0, advances to Western Conference final
Sandy • Waiting behind the group of red and white shirts, Chris Schuler stalked. The Real Salt Lake centerback waited for Javier Morales to send a long free kick into the whipping wind and into the box.
He circled around the group of players jockeying for position and found himself unmarked, wide open at the back post.
All he had to do was tap it in.
Schuler's first career playoff goal in the 102nd minute of play gave RSL a 2-0 overtime victory over the L.A. Galaxy in the second leg of the Western Conference semifinal Thursday night at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy.
RSL advances on a 2-1 aggregate.
It was the advantage they needed to advance to the Western Conference final for the third time in five seasons. RSL will face the winner of the Portland-Seattle Western Conference semifinal Sunday either in Sandy or in Seattle should the Sounders upset the Timbers.
Despite being outplayed in the first leg of the series at the StubHub Center in Carson, Calif., Sunday night, RSL dominated the run of play Thursday night, often taking it to the counter-attacking Galaxy.
It worked in the 35th minute of play when 22-year-old Sebastian Velasquez scored his first professional goal in his MLS career with a header by L.A. goalkeeper Jaime Penedo.
RSL had to close the final 10 minutes of the second overtime period down a man after forward Alvaro Saborio was taken off with an injury and RSL without any remaining substitutes.