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Mexican Primera, Clausura Liguilla: Semifinals Set After Tigres Win

Three of the four Liguilla semifinalists are northern clubs. Tigres destroyed Morelia on Sunday night, joining Monterrey, Club America and Santos in the next round.

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UANL Tigres Vs. Monarcas Morelia, 2012 Clausura Liguilla Quarterfinals: Tigres Win 1-0

UANL Tigres slipped a bit late in the Clausura, but they've started Liguilla looking very much like the team that won the most recent championship in Mexico. Their defense was excellent, holding Monarcas Morelia to just four shots and one on target in the first leg of their Liguilla quarterfinal match at Estadio Universitario. Morelia need to win at home in the second leg to go through after Tigres' 1-0 victory.

Hector Raul Mancilla scored the game's only goal 22 minutes in, finishing off a pass by Elias Hernandez. Tigres were conservative going forward for the rest of the game by the standards of most Mexican Primera sides and held on to a clean sheet like they have so many times at home over the last two seasons.

The good news for Morelia is that they have the tiebreaker as the higher seed. Any one-goal win in the return leg would see them through to the next round.


Jaguares Chiapas Vs. Santos Laguna, 2012 Clausura Liguilla Quarterfinals: Santos Win 4-3, Defense Is Stupid

Jaguares de Chiapas and Santos Laguna made a mutual pact to not do any defending on Thursday night, and Jaguares came out as the worse team for it. Santos have taken a one-goal lead back to Torreon after pulling off a 4-3 victory in Chiapas. Santos already had a massive leg-up in the tie heading into stoppage time with a 3-3 away draw, but Carlos Darwin Quintero netted a winner with the last kick of the ball to make them overwhelming favorites in the second leg.

Daniel Ludueña netted the game's first goal in the 24th minute, skipping a long-range drive into the back of the net, but Jaguares responded in a magnificent way that made it look like they were going to give Santos a real run for their money. Luis Gabriel Rey netted an equalizer in the 28th minute with a header and Jaguares star Jackson Martinez gave his team the lead three minutes later with a calmly placed finish after a through ball by Edgar Andrade.

Jaguares looked to be taking control, but Santos' star striker Oribe Peralta fired his team back into the match with a spectacular finish from 20 yards into the upper corner, making it 2-2 after 38 minutes of play.

Ludueña gave his team the lead for the second time in the second half, scoring again on a great shot from outside the box, this time in the 59th minute. Santos held that lead for a longer period of time than either team had held a lead previously, but eventually gave it away. In the 74th minute, Martinez netted his second goal of the game with another well-placed finish from 12 yards.

Even though a draw made Santos favorites, Jaguares were probably willing to accept it after such a wild match, but their defense was undone late. In the sixth minute of second half stoppage time, Quintero skinned two defenders, then somehow beat Edgar Hernandez from an extremely narrow angle with literally the final kick of the ball to give his team the victory.

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