Welcome to Home Depot Center. Chivas USA and Real Salt Lake will determine the first Western Conference finalist within 90 minutes' time. RSL holds a 1-0 advantage but Chivas will throw everything they have at RSL.
Chivas USA: Zach Thornton; Carey Talley, Jim Curtin, Shavar Thomas, Jonathan Bornstein; Sacha Kljestan, Jesse Marsch, Paulo Nagamura, Francisco Mendoza; Atiba Harris, Ante Razov.
Real Salt Lake: Nick Rimando; Jamison Olave, Nat Borchers, Robbie Russell, Chris Wingert; Dema Kovalenko, Kyle Beckerman, Javier Morales, Will Johnson; Clint Mathis, Yura Movsisyan.
Pre-game: I'll be providing some commentary on the game here but I've got three different stories to file at the whistle so if I'm away for a moment, you'll know why.
1 - As the game kicks off, Legion unfurls a gigantic flag on their side of the field. It goes from the bottom of the field all the way to the top of the section. As it goes down, red and white streamers fly onto the field. Truly awesome sight.
3 - It's quite loud in here tonight, a stark contrast to Rio Tinto a week ago. The Union Ultras are holding their own on their side of the field.
4 - There was a stoppge for several minutes while Clint Mathis was in pain. Then, Nick Rimando gets a talking-to by ref Michael Kennedy. Looks like RSL's going to try and waste as much time as they can possibly get away with. Looks like we may be in for an ugly game.
9 - So far, nothing much from Chivas. RSL doing well to keep things tight.
10 - Yellow for Clint Mathis. He comes in well after a whistle and upends Jonathan Bornstein from behind.
11 - Nagamura lines up a 25-yarder but it goes wide. First shot of the game for either side.
13 - It's pretty much 10 guys behind the ball for RSL and Yura up top trying to get lucky on a counter.
16 - Movsisyan gets a shot on goal, but his shot sails over the crossbar. With a bit more touch, this game might have seen a goal.
18 - Mendoza shoots from 27 yards out but the ball goes harmlessly wide of goal.
22 - RSL gets a counter and Mathis breaks down the middle and hits the turf but no call. Perhaps if Mathis wouldn't have dived so much at the beginning of the game he'd get more calls. Paulo Nagamura also picks up a yellow card a few moments later.
23 - The Ultras take out their jersey now while RSL lines up for a free kick which goes nowhere.
24 - Nice buildup from Chivas; Bornstein to Harris over to Razov but Ante's touch in the box fails him. Passes are getting better from Chivas, though.
26 - Olave goes down in pain. Maybe. He's down but not sure he's in pain. Whatever the case, he milked about a minute or so.
27 - Almost a goal. Twice. Sacha's shot gets denied, ball goes out of bounds. Marsch gets a look on the ensuing corner but Rimando makes save.
29 - PENALTY!!! Razov gets taken down by Javier Morales. Sacha up to take it.
31 - GOAL!! And we're even 1-1. Sacha Kljestan buries the shot. He sent it high into the upper right corner and the series is level 1-1. RSL's going to have to change their defend-at-all-costs tactics.
32 - Just got this text from a friend of mine whose an RSL supporter: "big time dive"
39 - GOAL!! Dema Kovalenko of all people puts RSL back ahead 2-1. Morales whipped a cross from the right and Kovalenko's glancing header was enough to beat Thornton.
HALF TIME So far, not quite the ugly game I'd expected. Chivas got the goal, forced RSL to push forward and RSL got the equalizer. So after 45 minutes, we're right back to where we started.
53 - Okay, game started. Alekco came on for Jim Curtin. Yura just tested Thornton and Thornton made the save. It's the second shot RSL has had this half.
63 - Chivas getting some buildup and looking a bit dangerous. Braun replaced Talley in the 56th minute so Chivas has a three-man backline of Shavar Thomas, Jonathan Bornstein and Francisco Mendoza.
65 - Movsisyan hits the outside of the net from close range.
72 - Findley in, Mathis out.
77 - GOAL!! This one's over. Morales does the damage, scoring from the left edge of the penalty area on an RSL counter. RSL is ahead 3-1 on the aggregate score. Only a miracle will send Chivas through now.
83 - GOAL!! Justin Braun tucks in a ball from the top of the spot. RSL 3-2 in the only score that matters. Chivas with some hope.
87 - Zotinca in, Harris out for Chivas.
89 - Kljestan with a look from the top of the spot but the shot goes high.
90 - Five minutes of stoppage time.
And that's it. Chivas USA is done for for in the first round for the third year in a row while RSL wins their first playoff series in their first try.