Bridgeview, IL (Sports Network) - The Chicago Fire defeated FC Dallas 2-1 on Wednesday to clinch the Brimstone Cup with the club's first win over Dallas at Toyota Park.
The Fire entered Wednesday's affair with an 0-5-1 record against Dallas at the venue, and they even looked likely to extend that poor record when Matt Hedges opened the scoring four minutes before halftime.
But Chicago (5-3-3) ultimately prevailed as Sebastian Grazzini and Marco Pappa scored to lift the club to 18 points on the season and doom Dallas (3-7-4) to an eight-game winless run.
The visitors went in front when Sean Johnson failed to safely parry away a shot off a corner kick. The rebound fell to Hedges who slammed home his first goal of the season.
Chicago was able to equalize before the close of the first half as Grazzini collected a pass from Pappa and ripped a shot past Kevin Hartman from outside the box.
Dallas had a golden opportunity to regain the lead when Bruno Guarda earned a suspect penalty, going down easily on a soft challenge from Dominic Oduro. But justice was served when Johnson produced a fine save from Blas Perez's ensuing attempt.
The visitors were on the short end of the stick at the other end of the pitch when Chicago bagged a questionable go-ahead goal in the 63rd minute.
The Fire were awarded a just penalty by Hilario Grajeda as Carlos Rodriguez barged into Pappa from behind. Grazzini had his subsequent kick saved by Hartman and Pappa was able to stuff home the rebound despite clearly encroaching inside the box before the initial shot was taken. Nevertheless, the goal stood and Pappa gladly secured his third goal of the season.
Chicago will go for a second straight win Saturday when it heads to Crew Stadium to face the Columbus Crew, while FC Dallas will look to reverse its fortunes against Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium.
RailHawks push past Galaxy The Carolina RailHawks advanced to the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Wednesday with a 2-0 win over Major League Soccer's defending champions the LA Galaxy. Photos by Jim Green.
RailHawks take out Galaxy 2-1 The Carolina RailHawks scored twice in the second half to upset the L.A. Galaxy of the MLS at WakeMed Soccer Park Tuesday in front of a sell-out crowd during the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.