The game had started perfectly for the visitors, with the Tuzos taking the lead in just the third minute. Erick Aguirre got free on the left, drove into the box, and cut the ball back towards the center. Franco Jara brought the ball down and sent it in off the post to make it 0-1 for Pachuca early on.
Jara continued to be active up top for the Tuzos, but as the game wore on the visitors’ dominance waned and Dallas grew into the game.
Just before halftime, the hosts tied it up. Alfonso Blanco made an initial save, but gave up a rebound that fell nicely for Maximiliano Urruti to make it 1-1.
Dallas started the second half just as strongly as Pachuca had started the first. In the opening five minutes of the second stanza, the MLS side hit the woodwork and had a would-be goal disallowed for offside.
In the 58th minute, Dallas had the ball in the back of the net again, and that time it counted. Kellyn Acosta sent a picture-perfect free kick arcing over the wall and into the back of the net to complete the comeback and give Dallas the 2-1 lead.
Dallas came close to adding a third on one or two occasions, but Blanco did well in goal to keep the Tuzos within touching distance.
With the 2-1 win, Dallas will advance with a win or draw in the second leg on April 4th. Pachuca will advance with a 1-0 win, but if Dallas scores, Pachuca will need to win by two. A 2-1 Pachuca win would send the series to extra time.
Dallas: Chris Seitz, Hernán Grana, Walker Zimmerman, Matt Hedges, Maynor Figueroa, Kellyn Acosta, Roland Lamah (Aaron Guillen 92′), Carlos Gruezo, Michael Barrios (Tesho Akindele 80′), Maximiliano Urruti, Cristian Colmán (Atiba Harris 83′).
Pachuca: Alfonso Blanco, John Stefan Medina, Omar González, Óscar Murillo, Raúl López, Jorge Hernández, Erick Gutiérrez, Víctor Guzmán (Braian Rodríguez 73′), Jonathan Urretaviscaya, Franco Jara, Erick Aguirre (Roberto Alvarado 81′).