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3 things from RSL's 0-0 draw with the Galaxy

Real Salt Lake dominated, but Jaime Penedo stole a draw.

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

The LA Galaxy owe Jaime Penedo a beer ... or two. The Panamanian goalkeeper made six saves to allow the Galaxy to escape with a 0-0 draw against Real Salt Lake on Saturday in the first leg of the Western Conference semifinals.

Penedo came up with several big saves for the Galaxy, especially in the second half. Among the biggest was his stop of Joao Plata off a shot that took a deflection right after halftime. Penedo again robbed Plata in the 69th minute, coming well off his line to cut down the angle on a 1-v-1 opportunity. Penedo also alertly stopped what would have been a wind-aided Javier Morales olimpico, and had another lunging effort to keep out a Morales free kick in the 84th minute.

But Penedo's best play of the night came in the 90th minute when Morales found himself with the ball at his feet and about 10 yards out. Morales' effort appeared headed into the back of the net, but Penedo made a leaping save to preserve the shutout.

The Galaxy's best chance came in the 36th minute when Gyasi Zardes got behind the RSL defense and appeared to score the go-ahead goal. But the assistant referee had waved him offside, negating the goal even though replays clearly showed Zardes onside.

Real Salt Lake: Rimando; Beltran, Schuler, Borchers, Wingert; Beckerman, Gil, Mulholland, Morales; Saborio, Plata

Goals: none

LA Galaxy: Penedo; Gargan, Gonzalez, DLG, Rogers; Husidic (Gordon 87), Sarvas, Juninho, Donovan; Keane, Zardes.

Goals: none

3 things

1. Penedo is criminally underrated: Maybe it's because he plays for the Galaxy or maybe it's because he's only been in the league for a little over a year, but few goalkeepers are capable of making the saves he made on Saturday. Without Penedo's efforts, the Galaxy would be looking at a sizable hole as the series shifts to StubHub Center. Instead ...

2. MLS needs to do something about refs like Silviu Petrescu: There might not be a referee in the league with a reputation as clear as Petrescu: he loves to "let them play." While that may have had a place in this league a few years ago, MLS officials have made a lot of hay out of saying things have changed recently. Well, as long as Petrescu keeps getting high-profile assignments, it's hard to take that too seriously. It's almost criminal to think Petrescu was the league's Referee of the Year in 2012.

3. The Galaxy have their work cut out for them: RSL had a 14-3 shots advantage. While it might be tempting to chalk that up to the Galaxy simply being content to take a draw back to StubHub, it's also worth pointing out that the Galaxy got to this point by never settling for a draw. This result was a product of what RSL did right, and now the Galaxy need to be worried about the away-goals tiebreaker.