Lopez saves the day for Honduras in Third-Place Match
DENVER, Colorado– GK Luis Lopez made two saves to lift Honduras to a 5-4 penalty shootout victory over Costa Rica following a 2-2 draw in the Third-Place Match of the 2021 Concacaf Nations League Finals on Sunday afternoon at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver, Colorado.
Costa Rica could not have asked for a better start, as Joel Campbell turned in a cross from Bryan Oviedo from the left flank in the 8’ to make it a 1-0 lead for the Ticos.
Honduras looked to get back on equal footing and Edwin Rodriguez was inches from doing so in the 33’ with a shot that struck the post of Costa Rica GK Leonel Moreira.
Rodriguez would get another crack at goal shortly after the re-start in the 48’ and this time he would not miss, as he chested down a cross from Kevin Alvarez and hammered a left-footed shot into net to make it 1-1.
The momentum stayed with Honduras and they would find the go-ahead goal in the 80’ by dispossessing Costa Rica in the Ticos’ half, followed by Alex Lopez feeding Alberth Elis with a pass and the Boavista FW finishing for a 2-1 Honduras lead.
Costa Rica would strike right back via a set piece, as Francisco Calvo smacked in a header in the 85’ off a Johan Venegas free kick to level things at 2-2.
It was wide open in the final minutes with each side on the hunt for a winning goal, but things had to be settled in a penalty shootout.
From the spot, the Catrachos would emerge victorious thanks to Luis Lopez, who came up with two big saves to seal the shootout win for his side.
- CRC Johan Venegas 1x0
- HON Alexander López 1-1
- CRC Francico Calvo 2-1
- HON Alberth Elis 2-2
- CRC Ariel Lassiter saved
- HON Jorge Benguche 3-2
- CRC Gerson Torres 3-3
- HON Jonathan Rubio saved
- CRC Joseph Mora 4-3
- HON Bryan Acosta 4-4
- CRC Yeltsin Tejeda saved
- HON Ever Alvarado 5-4
Fabian Coito, HC Honduras
Ronald Gonzalez, HC Costa Rica