March 14, 2009 Real Salt Lake vs Toronto FC (from

03/14/2009 7:57PM
Two early goals give RSL win over TFC
Real take sixth annual Carolina Challenge Cup with victory
By Andrew Miller / Staff

CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Real Salt Lake got two goals in the first 20 minutes from Yura Movsisyan and Clint Mathis and held on to beat Toronto FC 2-1, to capture the sixth annual Carolina Challenge Cup. Real Salt Lake went 3-0 during the week long event.

RSL dominated the action early, getting several quality scoring chances in the first 15 minutes of the match. Then after a flurry of action in the Toronto FC half of the field, Real Salt Lake took a 1-0 lead on Movsisyan's goal in the sixth minute.

RSL midfielder Javier Morales pounced on a loose ball at midfield and sent it over the top of the Toronto FC defensive wall. Movsisyan ran down the ball and beat Toronto FC goalie Stefan Frei between his legs from about 10 yards out for the score.

RSL had another excellent scoring chance in the 16th minute. After a scramble in front of the net, the ball popped out to Findley at the top of the 18-yard box. Frei, who had tried to chase down a loose ball, had left his line and Findley had nearly the entire net to shoot at, but Toronto captain Jim Brennan blocked Findley's blast to end the threat.

After some sustained pressure, Real Salt Lake pushed their advantage to 2-0 on Mathis' second goal of the tournament in the 20th minute.

Findley got the ball about 35 yards out on the left flank and was able to beat Toronto FC midfielder Rohan Ricketts to the six-yard box. Just as Frei was coming off his line, Findley slid the ball to a wide-open Mathis at the back post, who easily knocked it into the open net.

RSL nearly scored again two minutes later when Toronto FC defender Kevin Harmse was ejected from the game for picking up his second yellow card after grabbing Findley from behind. Morales' free kick from about 25 yards out hit the right post and Findley's follow-up header also went wide of the net.

Despite being a man down, Toronto FC was able to generate some pressure and finally cut the gap to 2-1 on Dwayne De Rosario's third goal of the tournament in the 37th minute. After a foul on RSL defender Jamison Olave, Toronto had a free kick just to the left of the goal from about 20 yards out.

Amado Guevara's curling free kick was blocked off the line by RSL defender Chris Wingert. But De Rosario picked up the rebound, stepped around a defender, and beat RSL keeper Nick Rimando for the score.

Toronto FC appeared to tie the game in the 85th minute when Fuad Ibrahim redirected Guevara free kick from about 30 yards out. However, the assistant referee ruled that Ibrahim was off side on the play and the goal was nullified.

Andrew Miller is a contributor to

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