Orlando City beat Tigres 0-0 on Tuesday.
You read that correctly.
On the road ... in their Concacaf Champions League debut ... in one of Liga MX's most hostile environments ... more than 1,400 miles from home, no less ... the Lions defied the odds and earned nothing short of a win-worthy result against the tournament's 2020 champions.
They didn't back down. They didn't concede. Maybe most important of all, they played like they had been there before.
"It's the Champions League here in Concacaf, playing against a team who has a lot of tradition and our fans should be very proud because this one is not that somebody gave it to us but we earned it," Orlando head coach Oscar Pareja said one day before the match. "Just being in this competition is because Orlando City has earned that possibility. We are very proud to represent the Club and we will be pushing. It’s going to be a great night."
The Lions not only earned it -- Pareja's bunch proved they belong against the toughest draw of the competition.
In one week, these clubs will go again. This time from the friendly confines of Exploria Stadium in what is sure to be a second-leg decider to remember.
Things may be all even on aggregate, but make no mistake about it -- this now looks to be Orlando's for the taking.
Raise your hand if you saw that coming.
Whether at home or in Monterrey, just think about -- and take a moment to appreciate -- what you stayed up to witness inside that orange-and-blue-outfitted venue they dub "El Volcán" for the noise that Tigres' 42,000 passionate supporters make each match.
On this night, it was Orlando making noise of its own.
There was a lime green-clad Pedro Gallese doing what Pedro Gallese does, standing on his head and soaring from post to post for 90-plus minutes on his way to a Man-of-the-Match-worthy, eight-save effort in net.
There was Rodrigo Schlegel doing what Rodrigo Schlegel does, adding to his Orlando City legend and frustrating the ever-so-dangerous Andre-Pierre Gignac throughout the match -- at one point forcing the Tigres captain into a straight red card just ahead of halftime before replay review changed the call to a yellow.
There was Martín Ojeda -- in only his third match in purple -- nearly sending the Orlando faithful into a frenzy in the 58th minute when he pumped a left-footed strike from just outside the box that sent Tigres goalkeeper Nahuel Guzman lurching to keep things deadlocked.
It wasn't perfect, sure. Orlando City held possession only 38 percent of the match and allowed 22 shots (eight on goal). But the final result darn near was, earning a massive road confidence boost. That's the stat that matters the most.
Consider this: When Orlando City took down the Tampa Bay Rowdies, Philadelphia Union, Inter Miami, Nashville SC, New York Red Bulls and Sacramento Republic FC on its way to the 2022 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championship last fall -- clinching one of four American spots in this Champions League tournament -- it did so having never left home turf.
Now, that same home-field advantage will mean more than ever.
Now, arguably the biggest match of the season awaits.
March has always been a month known for Cinderella stories. Orlando City may very well be on the way to writing its own.