CONCACAF.com takes a look at the best performances and most interesting stories in CONCACAF Weekend’s Best.
MORELIA, TIGRES BATTLE TO DRAW IN SIX-GOAL THRILLER
In arguably the best game of the 2017 Liga MX Apertura, host Morelia (3W-4D-2L, 13 points) rallied twice from single-goal deficits to draw 3-3 with Tigres (3-4-1, 13) on Friday. After Jesus Dueñas’ own-goal saw it fall behind in the 20th minute, Tigres went ahead 2-1 through Javier Aquino (23’) and Enner Valencia (30’). Raul Ruidiaz (56’) leveled 11 minutes into the second half – netting in a fifth consecutive game -- only for Aquino (57’) to complete his brace and restore the UANL lead a minute later. Morelia’s Mexico international Angel Sepulveda (78’) brought the sides back on level terms by completing the scoreline with 12 minutes remaining in normal time.
MOTAGUA STAYS UNDEFEATED
Motagua (3-4-0, 13) remained unbeaten after seven matches in the 2017 Honduran Apertura thanks to a 2-1 comeback win over first-place Real España (4-1-2, 13). The sides now top the table on 13 points each, with Real España holding a slight edge on goal difference (+6 to +3). Jhow Benavidez (17’) gave the host a 1-0 lead at half-time, but the Ciclon Azul responded after the break on goals by Eddie Hernandez (66’) and Wilmer Crisanto (85’).
CRUZ AZUL TOUGH TO TOP
After ending the 2017 Liga MX Clausura on a three-game unbeaten streak, Cruz Azul has picked up where it left off, opening the 2017 Apertura with a 3-6-0 mark and occupying fourth place. La Maquina earned a 2-1 win over visiting Santos on Saturday as Christian Gimenez broke a 1-1 tie in the 70th minute with his first goal of the season.
MARTINEZ IS ATLANTA UNITED’S HAT-TRICK HERO
In Major League Soccer, Venezuela international Josef Martinez (36’, 55’, 69’) scored three goals as host Atlanta United stormed back three times from deficits to draw 3-3 with visiting Orlando City. It was Martinez’s third hat-trick of the season, giving him a remarkable 16 goals in only 14 games. The match was played at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in front of 70,425 fans, a single-game MLS record crowd.
Randall Azofeifa (59’) and Esteban Ramirez (81’) scored second-half goals to give first-place Herediano (6-3-0, 21) a 2-1 win over visiting Perez Zeledon in the 2017 Costa Rican Invierno on Saturday. The unbeaten Florenses have a two-point lead over second-place Saprissa and have won nine of their last 12 matches dating back to last season.
RICKETTS RISES FOR TORONTO FC
MLS table-topper Toronto FC (18-8-3, 62) traveled to the LA Galaxy without top scorers Sebastian Giovinco (15 goals) and Jozy Altidore (13 goals) and still came away with a 4-0 win as Canada international Tosaint Ricketts (37’, 76’) netted a brace. The Reds’ winning streak was extended to six games.
SANTA TECLA STRIKES FOR FIVE AGAINST FIRPO…AGAIN
Santa Tecla scored five goals in a Salvadoran league game for the second time in 2017, earning a 5-0 win over visiting Luis Angel Firpo on Saturday. The first time? It was also at home against Firpo in a 5-2 victory on April 12, 2017.