Moussa Djitte and Sebastian Driussi scored three minutes apart in the first half as Austin FC defeated FC Dallas 2-1 on Sunday night in their MLS Cup Western Conference semifinal.
Goalkeeper Brad Stuver made a big save in the final moments as No. 2 seed Austin advanced to the conference final against No. 1 seed LAFC on Sunday.
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LAFC, the Supporters’ Shield winner for the best record in MLS’ regular season, defeated rivals the LA Galaxy on Thursday to advance to the conference championship match.
Austin has defeated LAFC in both matches between the teams this season and rode the momentum from its raucous home crowd to dominate the match’s first 45 minutes against Dallas, eventually breaking through with a pair of goals midway through the first half.
In the 26th minute, Djitte picked up a deflected corner kick at the top of the six-yard box and zipped the ball past Dallas goalkeeper Maarten Paes for a 1-0 lead.
In the 29th minute, Driussi stole the ball near midfield, dribbled past a defender and blasted a shot from the top of the penalty area, beating Paes to his right side. It was Driussi’s third goal of the playoffs after scoring 22 goals in the regular season.
Austin’s 2-0 lead stood up until Alan Velasco got No.3-seed Dallas on the board in the 65th minute.
Dallas pushed valiantly for an equalizer, but Stuver came up big on their best chance sticking out his foot at the last instant at the far post to save a great chance by Dallas’ Jader Obrian in the 87th minute to keep Austin on top.
One week after rallying from a 2-0 deficit to get past Real Salt Lake, Austin did not allow Dallas to do the same. Austin beat their in-state rival for the first time, having gone 0-3 against Dallas in 2021 and 0-0-2 in the 2022 regular season.
Information from Reuters was used in this report.