September 22, 2012
Quakes keep rolling, RSL, Galaxy clinch
SPORTING KANSAS CITY 0, MONTREAL IMPACT 0
|Chris Rolfe fueled the Fire's comeback against Columbus with two goals in three minutes.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
MONTREAL—The Montreal Impact played Eastern Conference leaders Sporting Kansas City to a creditable scoreless draw at rain-drenched Stade Saputo, but the single-point result dealt a serious blow to the expansion team’s postseason hopes.
The Impact (12-15-4, 40 pts) have only three games left, and are six points out of playoff-eligible fifth place in the conference.
The poor conditions limited both teams’ offensive chances. Kansas City put only two of their nine shots on goal, while Montreal were on target three of seven times. Sporting goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen came up with the save of the game in stoppage time, punching away a goal-bound header by Matteo Ferrari to preserve the clean sheet.
Sporting are riding an eight-game unbeaten streak, and are in the thick of the Supporters’ Shield race with 55 points (16-7-7).
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION 1, NEW YORK RED BULLS 1
FOXBOROUGH, Mass.—The New York Red Bulls came heartbreakingly close to snapping their decade-long Gillette Stadium jinx, but defender Darrius Barnes scored his first career MLS goal in the last seconds of stoppage time to lift the New England Revolution into a 1-1 draw on Saturday night.
The snake-bitten Revolution (7-15-8, 29 points) appeared destined for another loss when Bobby Shuttleworth was unable to control Wilman Conde’s cross and Joel Lindpere headed the ball into an empty net for New York (14-8-8, 50 points) as second-half stoppage time began. But Barnes found the back of the net off a long cross from Ryan Guy to rob New York of their first road win in New England since 2002.
Revolution striker Jerry Bengtson had a goal called back for a questionable offside call in the fourth minute, and Red Bulls netminder Bill Gaudette came up with sharp saves on an early shot by Diego Fagundez and dangerous free kick by Lee Nguyen.
Tim Cahill had a couple of good looks for the Red Bulls, but missed the mark with a long strike in the first half and an unmarked header in the second. The Red Bulls played the final 16 minutes shorthanded after rookie defender Connor Lade collected his second yellow card of the match for tackling Nguyen on a breakaway.
Full story from Big Apple Soccer
REAL SALT LAKE 2, PORTLAND TIMBERS 1
SANDY, Utah—Javier Morales led the way with a goal and an assist as Real Salt Lake punched their ticket to the 2012 postseason with a 2-1 win over the Portland Timbers Saturday night at Rio Tinto Stadium.
In the 14th minute, Morales drew a foul just outside the penalty area and backheeled the short free kick to Fabian Espindola, who left-f ooted a shot through the defensive wall and past netminder Joe Bendik to stake RSL to a 1-0 lead. In the 36th, Morales made the score 2-1 with another 19-yard free kick, bending the ball from the left side of the field around the wall and inside the upper near corner.
Salt Lake netminder Nick Rimando made four saves for the win, including a clutch stop on a sharp header by Rodney Wallace in the 22nd minute.
Bright Dike saved Portland from the shutout with a soaring header off Sal Zizzo’s long service in the 61st-minute, but it was not enough to break the Timbers’ season-long winless run away from Jeld-Wen Field.
RSL improve to 15-11-4 and 49 points, while the Timbers remain eighth in the MLS West at 7-15-8 (29).
CHICAGO FIRE 2, COLUMBUS CREW 1
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill.—Chris Rolfe scored twice in three minutes to lead the Chicago Fire to a 2-1 comeback win over the Columbus Crew Saturday night at Toyota Park.
The victory pulled the Fire (16-8-5, 53 pts) within two points of Eastern Conference leaders Kansas City. The Crew remain just out of the postseason pool at 13-11-6 (45).
Jairo Arrieta broke the ice for Columbus in the 15th minute, drilling the ball into the lower right corner of the net for a 1-0 lead.
Rolfe equalized for the Fire in the 23rd, running onto a cross from Sherjill MacDonald, bringing the ball to the top of the penalty area and left-footing it into the net.
The Fire struck again three minutes later. Patrick Nyarko brought the ball through a crowd of defenders before dishing off to Rolfe, who lifted the ball over the defenders and goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum and into the net for a 2-1 lead.
Fire netminder Sean Johnson made five saves to preserve the win.
Full story from ChicagoLand Soccer News
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES 2, SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC 0
SEATTLE—Simon Dawkins connected from 25 yards and Chris Wondolowski scored his MLS-record tenth game-winning goal of the season as the San Jose Earthquakes edged Seattle Sounders FC 2-1 Saturday night at CenturyLink Field.
Dawkins stunned the Sounders with a second-minute blast past netminder Michael Gspurning and into the right side of the net. But Seattle recovered quickly. Samuel Ochoa crossed the ball from the right side to Steve Zakuani, who poked home the equalizer from just off the far post.
Wondolowski put the game away at the half-hour mark. The play started with a left-side San Jose corner kick, which was relayed from the top of the six-yard box to Victor Bernardez on the right side. Bernardez squared a sharp pass back into the mixer, where the MLS Golden Boot leader deflected it into the far side of the net for his 22nd goal in 28 games.
Zakuani’s goal turned out to be the only shot on goal for the Sounders (13-7-9, 48 pts), who lost at home for only the fourth time this season. The Quakes (18-6-6) open up a five-point lead over second-place Sporting Kansas City in the race for the MLS Supporters’ Shield with 60 points.
LA GALAXY 4, TORONTO FC 2
CARSON, Calif.—The LA Galaxy are headed back to the MLS Cup playoffs after defeating Toronto FC 4-2 Saturday night at the Home Depot Center.
Juninho and Robbie Keane split the scoring down the middle, with the Brazilian connecting on an 11th-minute free kick and a 40-yard blast in the 33rd. Three minutes later, Keane made the score 3-0 with his 13th goal of the season.
Luis Silva helped the Reds make a game of it, setting up Terry Dunfield’s 38th-minute header and taking advantage of a Galaxy defensive lapse to make it a one-goal game in the 86th, but Keane put the finishing touches on the Galaxy performance in the second minute of stoppage time. After getting the ball from Landon Donovan, Keane juked Toronto defender Ashtone Morgan and slipped the ball inside the right post.
The win improves the Galaxy to 15-11-4, with 49 points. Toronto falls to 5-18-7, 22 pts.
Full story from LA Soccer News