A dramatic encounter saw Honduras continue its journey in the Gold Cup, advancing to the semifinals where it will face Mexico next Wednesday.Alvaro Saborio missed a penalty kick 15 minutes from time and missed one more in a shootout as Jerry Bengston fired home the decisive penalty to send Honduras to the semifinals of the CONCACAF Gold Cup 4-3 on penalties.
The contest finished 1-1 after Bengston and Dennis Marshall both scored early in the second half before Saborio missed a golden chance to send the Ticos through to the next round as the teams ended up settling the result in penalty kicks after neither took their chances in extra time.
The first half passed with more physical play than offensive chances. Honduras was the better side, but the scoreline did not reflect it.
With both teams failing to finish, Honduras finally found the breakthrough.
Javier Portillo, darting down the left side after receiving a long ball from the back, blew by his defender, sending in a shot that deflected off goalkeeper Keilor Navas' foot, landing right to the feet of Bengston on the far side of the goal. The striker touched the ball easily into the net for the 1-0 advantage after four minutes played in the second half.
Costa Rica responded just seven minutes later when Marshall put home Christian Bolanos' corner kick, knocking the ball down into the net with his head without a defender within a metre of him.
Just under 20 minutes from time, Victor Bernardez took down Marcos Urena with a tug on the uniform as he charged the box, resulting in a penalty kick for the Ticos.
Saborio, who had to wait to take the kick after goalkeeper Noel Valladares claimed the ball was not placed well on the spot, hit a low shot to the left post that was saved by the goalkeeper, who reached with his right hand to push the ball wide, preserving the scoreline.
Honduras had a chance in the 91st minute to win the contest on the counter, but three Hondurans failed to put the ball in the net from inside the box, sending the game into extra time, where Honduras earned its place in the final four.
Now the Catrachos will play on Wednesday in the semifinals against Mexico, which defeated Guatemala later in the day.