Erik Friberg took advantage of a defensive mistake and scored in the 73rd minute, lifting the Seattle Sounders past the LA Galaxy 3-2 on Wednesday night in the knockout round of the MLS Cup playoffs.
After getting eliminated from the playoffs by LA three times since 2010, Seattle finally got the better of its rival to the south and ended the year for the Galaxy, who had won three of the last four MLS Cup titles.
Seattle scored twice in the first 12 minutes on goals from Clint Dempsey and Nelson Valdez, part of a wild first half that featured four goals in the first 22 minutes. But it was Friberg providing the winner, taking advantage of a third defensive mistake by the Galaxy and sending Seattle into the conference semifinals against either FC Dallas or Vancouver.
Sebastian Lletget and Gyasi Zardes scored in the first half for Los Angeles, but the Galaxy had just five shots in the second half as Seattle's defense tightened after giving up 11 shots in the first half.
Also on Wednesday, Chris Rolfe scored in the 83rd minute to help D.C. United beat the New England Revolution 2-1 on a rainy night.
The go-ahead goal came at the end of a skilled sequence. Nick DeLeon controlled the ball near the corner of the 18-yard box and back-heeled a pass to Fabian Espindola, who fed it across goal to an uncovered Rolfe.
Rolfe missed a penalty kick in the 75th minute.
Juan Agudelo opened the scoring in the 15th minute for New England with a bicycle kick goal following Kevin Alston's cross. D.C. United tied it just before halftime on Chris Pontius' flick header of Espindola's free kick.
Jermaine Jones made contact with the referee several times in the 92nd minute and received a straight red card. Jones ran down the referee after a hand ball was not called in the final minutes.