Atlanta United advanced to Major League Soccer’s championship match in just its second season, losing to the New York Red Bulls 1-0 on Thursday night on a goal in second-half stoppage time but winning the two-match Eastern Conference final by a 3-1 aggregate score.

Atlanta will host Portland or Sporting Kansas City in the MLS Cup on Dec. 8, a chance for the city’s second professional sports title and first since the Braves won the 1995 World Series.

New York, one of the league’s original teams, had the best regular-season record for the third time in six seasons but remained without an MLS title. The Red Bulls have reached the conference final five times but advanced for the only time in 2008, when they lost the MLS Cup match to Columbus.

COPA LIBERTADORES: The rearranged final second leg between Argentine rivals Boca Juniors and River Plate will be played Dec. 9 in Madrid.


PLAYER CHARGED: A Swedish prosecutor charged a British-born Italian hockey player, Thomas Larkin, with assault for blindsiding an opponent during a game last year.

Larkin hit Daniel Paille – a former Bruins player – on the ice and left him with a severe concussion. Last month’s ruling by Sweden’s Supreme Court where a Swedish hockey player was found guilty of assault for cross-checking an opponent paved the way for criminal prosecution.

WOMEN: The United States and Canada will renew their rivalry in a three-game series in February – Feb. 12 in London, Ontario, and Feb. 14 in Toronto, then Feb. 17 at Detroit.


CHAIR NAMED: Kathryn Carson, who joined the USA Gymnastics board of directors in June, was named the group’s new board chair to replace Karen Golz, who stepped down after taking over as chair of a newly appointed board in June.

Carson has a background in sports, previously serving as the chief legal counsel for the United States Golf Association and working as a board member for USA Field Hockey.


TITLE FIGHT: Adonis Stevenson of Canada (29-1-1, 24 KOs) said he needs “just one punch” to defeat Oleksandr Gvozdyk (15-0, 12 KOs) when they fight for the WBC light heavyweight championship Saturday at Quebec City.

“He’s hungry, he will want to go far in the boxing match,” Stevenson said. “But as the fight goes into the late rounds, he will become tired because I will be hitting him hard.”


MAJOR LEAGUES: A group seeking to lure a team to Portland, Oregon, announced it has signed an agreement in principle to develop a 45-acre waterfront site.

The agreement with the Port of Portland was announced by the Portland Diamond Project. The group also released artist renderings.


WINTER NATIONALS: Katie Ledecky won the 400-meter freestyle for her second title in two days at Greensboro, North Carolina, and her fellow Olympic champions, Simone Manuel and Nathan Adrian, took the 50 freestyles.

Ledecky, who won gold medals in the 400 and 800 freestyle events at the 2016 Olympics, and took the 800 to open the meet Wednesday, breezed in the 400, finishing in 4 minutes, 35 seconds to win by more than nine seconds. Ledecky and Manuel will meet Friday in the 200 freestyle.