Alex gives Fire 2-1 victory in 90th minute
Club will meet Whitecaps in Carolina Challenge Cup final on Saturday
Chicago Fire (Tribune illustration / April 6, 2012)
The Fire midfielder took a feed from Maicon Santos and launched a 20-foot liner as the Fire avoided a tie and set themselves up to win the Cup outright Saturday when they take on the Vancouver Whitecaps.
The Battery grabbed a 1-0 lead in the 11th minute after midfielder Jose Cuevas beat Paolo Tornaghi, the Fire's starting keeper, on a short shot.
Fire defender Austin Berry evened matters in the 27th minute when he headed in a goal following Joel Lindpere's free kick.
Before taking the field, the Fire resolved one roster question. Goalkeeper James Belshaw, a supplemental draft selection, was released and that leaves Alec Kann as the No. 3 goalkeeper behind Sean Johnson and Tornaghi.
Belshaw, a former Duke star, was in a tight battle with Kann for the final goalkeeper's slot. Kann, a Georgia native, played college soccer at Furman.
A team spokesman said the Fire aren't expected to bring in any more goalkeepers for looks and that Kann likely will be offered a contract.
The Fire and Whitecaps close Challenge Cup play at 4 p.m. Saturday. The Fire are scheduled to return to Chicago Sunday and have an indoor training session Tuesday.
Defender Gonzalo Segares sat out Wednesday's game, resting an ankle injured last Saturday against Houston.
Houston beat the Whitecaps 2-1 in Wednesday's early game.