Real Salt Lake wins thriller over Atlanta, 2-1

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SANDY, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – Real Salt Lake pulled out its most dramatic victory of the year Friday night against the defending MLS Cup champions.

Jefferson Savarino’s long-range blast late in stoppage time gave Real Salt Lake a 2-1 victory over Atlanta United for its season-high third straight victory.

Savarino shook free and sent a high, hard shot from outside the box to the far side for his second goal of the season.

“If we’re going to win a game 2-1, I’d much rather win it like that for the organization, for the fans,” said head coach Mike Petke. “It was an exciting ending.”

Sebastian Saucedo opened the scoring for Real Salt Lake (6-6-1) in the 36th minute. Outside the box, Saucedo put the ball between diving goalkeeper Brian Guzan and the post.

Josef Martínez tied it for Atlanta (6-5-2) in the 78th minute. Martínez finished a run down the middle by slipping around a defender in the box just in time to slot Franco Escobar’s centering pass past Nick Rimando.

But Savarino’s blast sent the RSL fans into a frenzy with his dramatic blast on the last sequence of the game.

“The fans deserve these types of exciting games and we play for this, for us to enjoy these games,” Saucedo said. “We just beat the defending champions and obviously there is a reason why we should at least have a chip on our shoulder. To say, ‘You know what? We just beat them,’ and keep going towards the next games.”

RSL next hits the road at Montreal Wednesday night.

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