MLS Week 10 Recap: Columbus drama, Vancouver comeback, more

IMAGE, MATT KREMKAU FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER

by DAVE MARTINEZ

There were a lot of reasons to be excited about this week’s games in Major League Soccer. Toronto FC played at home for the first time this season, and rivalry matches were played in Cascadia and Colorado. But the weekend’s wildest game, on and off the field, was between Columbus and Montreal.

Columbus Crew 4-4 Montreal Impact

Leading 3-1 early in the second half, Columbus was awarded a penalty against Montreal, and there was heated debate over who would take it. Federico Higuain took the penalty even as Kei Kamara was sitting one goal shy of a hat trick. Higuain beat Bush, but things went sour for the Crew from there. They gave up two goals shortly thereafter, and would in the end be pegged back to a 4-4 draw.

After the game, Kamara had sharp comments about the penalty incident:

The Impact deserve credit for coming back, even if Columbus played a role in that. Ignacio Piatti had two goals and earned a penalty. Dominic Oduro scored the equalizer in stoppage time against his former team, and did not hesitate to tear off his shirt in celebration.

Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 Portland Timbers

In a thrilling Cascadia Cup match, Vancouver came back to defeat their southern rivals. Portland took the lead on a stellar team goal in the 35th minute. Fanendo Adi’s backheel freed Darlington Nagbe, whose cross to the back post was bundled in by Nat Borchers. Jake Gleeson was impressive in the first half, making multiple good saves to deny the Whitecaps even as they controlled the run of play. But his stellar form came to an abrupt end. First, he was beaten at his near post by Masato Kudo’s equalizer. Minutes later, a shot-cross from Christian Bolanos slipped through his arms and into the net. That goal would provide the difference as the Whitecaps hung on to win.

LA Galaxy 4-2 New England Revolution

LA jumped out to a big lead, but nearly gave it up before securing their win over New England. The Galaxy were dominant in the first half, and jumped in front on Robbie Keane’s tap-in in the 13th minute. Giovani Dos Santos hit a rocket-powered volley to make it 2-0 ten minutes later. Gyasi Zardes and Keane combined again just before halftime.

Then, the Revs went off script. They refused to fold, and goals from Kellyn Rowe and Juan Agudelo in a four minute span suddenly made the game very interesting. But they didn’t have another shot on target and Steven Gerrard scored in the 90th minute to seal New England’s defeat.

Toronto FC 1-0 FC Dallas

Toronto gave a sellout crowd at the new-and-improved BMO Field something to celebrate with a win over slumping Dallas. TFC controlled the first half, but the breakthrough didn’t come until 28 minutes in. Tubas Endoh scored his first MLS goal after getting on the end of a cross from Sebastian Giovinco.The visitors were improved after halftime, but never put continued pressure on TFC’s back line. When Jesse Gonzalez was forced to leave the game with an injury, Ryan Hollingshead put on the gloves as a makeshift keeper for the game’s final minutes. He made one save in his brief stint in goal.

TFC now sits second in the East, with three more home games coming up. Dallas has now lost three games in a row by a combined 8-0.

Colorado Rapids 1-0 Real Salt Lake

The Colorado Rapids have the best record in MLS after a win over their Rocky Mountain rivals Saturday night. A stale first half ended first half, and it would once again be Jermaine Jones powering the Rapids. Jones hammered home a drop-off pass from Kevin Doyle in the 47th minute. Zac MacMath made six saves at the other end as the Rapids posted another clean sheet.

Jones has proved to be a godsend for Colorado, who have surprised seemingly everyone with their hot start to the season.

DC United 0-2 New York City FC

A quick second half surge powered NYCFC past DC. The first half produced moments of intrigue, notably the chance that Alvaro Saborio sent well over the bar, but the game was scoreless through 45. New York scored twice in quick succession early in the second half. David Villa fired in his seventh goal after Tommy McNamara made the effort to get the ball in the box. Just a couple minutes later, Khiry Shelton outjumped a couple defenders to double the visitors’ lead.

NYCFC has won two in a row after a lengthy drought.

Orlando City 1-1 New York Red Bulls

Orlando came back to level their Friday night match against New York, but had to settle for a draw after going down to 10 men. The Red Bulls took the lead on a clever finish by Bradley Wright-Phillips in the 19th minute. Sacha Kljestan had the assist with a through ball. The visitors’ lead lasted about fifty minutes before Orlando’s pressure paid off. Kevin Molino scored the equalizer. Christian Higuita was sent off for a two-legged challenge later in the match.

Orlando will have to turn more of these draws into victories if they hope to contend atop the East. It’s the first draw of the season for the Red Bulls, who can’t be dissatisfied with a road point.

Seattle Sounders 2-0 San Jose Earthquakes

Seattle held on to defeat San Jose late Saturday night. Clint Dempsey gave the Sounders a deserved lead in the 26th minute. San Jose had more of a spark to their play in the second half, and after a few chances came to nothing, the Quakes earned a penalty in the 84th minute. Chris Wondolowski hit the post with his attempt from the spot, and Seattle’s lead was safe. Jordan Morris added a goal, his fourth in as many matches, to seal the result.

The Sounders have kept clean sheets in two straight games, and now won four of their last five.

Houston Dynamo 2-0 Sporting Kansas City

Houston posted a comfortable and much-needed win over Kansas City. Cubo Torres made his first start of the year for the Dynamo, and provided an assist on Giles Barnes’ goal in the 30th minute. Barnes got credit for an assist of his own when Andrew Wenger added a second just before halftime, and that would be the end of the game’s scoring. SKC had two-thirds of the possession, but their finishing wasn’t good enough on 17 shots.

The win for Houston snaps a six-game winless skid, which matches the one SKC is now on.

 


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