Arango, Gomez score twice for RSL in electric 5-3 home win over Colorado

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SANDY — There are some sports moments where you just have to stop and take in the sights and sounds of a moment.

Real Salt Lake's 5-3 home win over Rocky Mountain rival Colorado Rapids had several exciting moments, but none more pause-worthy — and cheer-worthy — than an 88th-minute game-winner from Andres Gomez.

"I think it's one of the most emotional games that I've experienced probably since Damir (Kreilach's) last touch to put us in the playoffs in 2021," head coach Pablo Mastroeni said. "I haven't felt that type of energy from the group, with a steely mindset to stay in it when we weren't at our best."

Gomez was everywhere Saturday at America First Field and combined with fellow Colombian Chicho Arango to score four of RSL's five goals in a match the home team trailed for almost 50 minutes, starting in the fifth minute on a defensive mishap by Andrew Brody.

Brody, once again, found himself fumbling the ball a bit in his own half just minutes later, leading to a 2-0 deficit for the home team after 19 minutes. MVP candidate Arango came to the rescue just four minutes later to get RSL on the scoreboard, and Gomez got his first goal just before halftime to make it 2-2 at the break.

Djordje Mihailovic gave the lead back to the visitors in the 56th minute, and a tense 29 minutes ensued before Arango, once again, came to the rescue to tie the match at 3-3 in the 85th minute. Gomez couldn't be contained, however, and the youngster linked up with Arango on a give-and-go to tap one home and win the match for the Claret and Cobalt.

"There's always a moment in a player's career where that switch goes off, and when you think you can, you start doing it," Mastroeni said of Gomez. "I think Chicho having the kind of year he's having has definitely attracted a lot of attention his way, and Andres is doing a good job of reaping the benefits of that."

Anderson Julio added a cherry on top during stoppage time, and RSL extended its unbeaten streak to 10 games, dating back to the first meeting of the season with the Rapids when Colorado won 2-1. So you could call it a revenge game, I suppose. The win also maintains RSL's 4-point gap at the top of the west standings.

RSL leaves Utah next week for a pair of matches in Dallas and Seattle before returning home to AFF on June 1 against Austin FC.

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Caleb Turner covers Real Salt Lake as the team's beat writer for, in addition to his role where he oversees the sports team's social media accounts.


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