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Privett, Kahlina cinch advancement in Leagues Cup for Charlotte FC after penalty shootout with Cruz Azul

Neither team could find the net in regulation play. But penalty kicks decided the victor in Texas.

FRISCO, Texas — Charlotte FC was back at Toyota Stadium in the Dallas, Texas suburb of Frisco for the Leagues Cup. Their opponent in the round of 32 was Cruz Azul. But unlike the black and blue's last match - one that ended with Charlotte trouncing Necaxa - the score this time petered out differently, with the victor determined in penalty kicks after neither team found the net in regulation play.

There wasn't much action in the first half whatsoever. The most notable thing was that defender Nathan Byrne was handed a yellow card 15 minutes in. After 45 minutes of play, neither team had the advantage.

And it would stay that way through the end of the match, with no goals on the board for either Charlotte or Cruz Azul. Two members of Cruz Azul were handed yellow cards in the second half, however: midfielder Uriel Antuna and defender Willer Ditta.

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The match went on into extra time. And still, no goals from either team. That meant it was time for penalty kicks. Kristjian Kahlina would defend the net for Charlotte, while Andrés Gudiño would be goalkeeper for Cruz Azul.

Charlotte FC started the penalty round, albeit with a miss from Karol Świderski. Ignacio Rivero answered with a goal for Cruz Azul. Then Charlotte's Ben Bender found the net, with Antuna for Cruz missing.

Derrick Jones scored for Charlotte, unanswered by Carolos Rotondi. But Ashley Westwood wouldn't find the net, while Jesús Dueñas would score for Cruz Azul.  Kerwin Vargas would strike it in for Charlotte, as would Carlos Alberto Rodríguez for Cruz.

Charlotte FC's fate would come down to two players: midfielder Andrew Privett - who also plays for second team Crown Legacy in the MLS Next Pro league - and goalkeeper Kahlina. Privett found the net, giving Charlotte one more penalty kick. And when Kevin Castaño kicked in for Cruz Azul, Kahlina stopped the ball in its tracks.

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Final score after 90 minutes, extra time, and penalties: Charlotte wins 0(4) over Cruz Azul 0(3).

Charlotte FC now continues to the round of 16 in the Leagues Cup. They're set to take on Houston Dynamo on Monday, August 7.

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