WOODY BAUM - Sunday, May 2, 2010
Pachuca, the eighth seeded team in this tournament's liguilla continued their strong run of play as they defeated the defending champions and number one seeded team, Monterrey, this Saturday.
Pachuca showed no signs of fear as it took on the tournament's best team and Monterrey was lucky to have escaped with a loss by only one goal. Pachuca dominated much of the game, and created many dangerous only opportunities but it was the incredible play of Monterrey goalkeeper, Jonathan Orozco, who kept the visiting team in the game.
Francisco Torres, who started and played all 90 minutes, and the Pachuca midfield did a great job of distributing the ball at first, although it seemed at times they lacked the necessary punch to infiltrate the area and threaten Orozco.
Pachuca came close in the 18th minute after Damian Alvarez played a beautiful ball to Edy Brambila who had a clear shot at goal. However, Brambila wasn't able to reach the pass and take advantage.
10 minutes later, a well strong series of passes between Edgar Banitez and Alvarez gave Alvarez a shot at goal from a difficult angle on the left side of the area that he was able to convert to put Pachuca up by one.
Minutes later in the 40th minute, Torres had a chance at goal but his shot went high and above the cross bar.
Despite the lead, Pachuca continued to search for a second goal and came close of various occasions, including in the 70th minute when Benitez stole the ball in the area only to deliver a weak shot that was easily saved. Monterrey appeared disinterested towards the end and content to lose by one.
Pachuca went on to win and will now have to visit Monterrey for second leg of the quarterfinals. Pachuca will need to tie or win the second game to advance as the liguilla does not use the visiting goal advantage to determine the winner. In the event that the aggregate scores are tied, the higher seeded team, Monterrey, advances.