MLS Week 2 Recap, Highlights: Unexpected results

MLS Ball

by RYAN BRISTER

Major League Soccer completed the second week of its 2016 season on Sunday, and interesting scorelines abounded. Week two was a sharp rebuke to anyone who thought they could predict results in MLS.

Sporting Kansas City 2-1 Vancouver Whitecaps

Dom Dwyer’s brace held up for Kansas City as they held off a valiant effort from 10-man Vancouver. Dwyer’s first goal was a rocket from outside of the box, into the top corner, just five minutes into the match. He scored again from a much closer distance in the 41st minute. The Whitecaps dug themselves a bigger hole with Jordan Smith’s red card late in the first half. The visitors later earned a penalty, which Pedro Morales put away, but were unable to complete their comeback efforts. SKC has two wins to start the year; Vancouver has two losses.

New York City FC 2-2 Toronto FC

Toronto fought back to earn a point at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. A couple calls went the hosts’ way as they built a first half lead. Tommy McNamara earned a penalty, which was scored by David Villa for the first goal. Villa appeared to handle the ball before his second goal, but this went ignored by the referee and TFC found themselves two goals down. Then Sebastian Giovinco took over. Damien Perquis finished a free kick from the Italian in first half stoppage time. Giovinco himself scored the equalizer in the 76th minute. Both teams have four points through two weeks.

Montreal Impact 3-0 New York Red Bulls 

Montreal broke the game open in the second half, and sent the Red Bulls home with a second-straight loss. The hosts knocked on the door often in the first half, but entered the break without a goal to show for their efforts. Dom Oduro got the breakthrough in the 58th minute. Bradley Wright-Phillips had a great chance for an equalizer, but Evan Bush denied him. On the ensuring counter, Ignacio Piatti scored his third of the season. Anthony Jackson-Hamel added another in stoppage time. The Impact have done well in their opening two games to show that there is more to the side than Didier Drogba.

San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 Portland Timbers

San Jose stood firm against the defending champs, and won thanks to the early favorite for goal of the year. Portland could have taken an early lead when Lucas Melano struck the bar in the sixth minute. Instead, the game’s first goal was scored by Chris Wondolowski. The goal everyone will remember from this game was a long-distance chip from Quincy Amerikwa. He saw Adam Kwararsey off his line, and floated the ball to the one corner of goal the keeper couldn’t reach. Jack McInerney’s late goal was merely consolation for the Timbers.

Houston Dynamo 5-0 FC Dallas

This was not expected, to put it lightly. Houston rocked Dallas, scoring four times in the first half hour of a blowout victory. David Horst opened the scoring in the sixth minute, and Matt Hedges put his team in a deeper hole with an own goal shortly thereafter. Things did not get better from there for Dallas. Ricardo Clark, Andrew Wenger, and Will Bruin all got on the scoresheet before the night was over. It marks the first victory for the Dynamo over their Texas rivals since 2012.

Columbus Crew SC 1-2 Philadelphia Union 

Chris Pontius scored twice as Philly disrupted Columbus’ home opener. The Crew were in control for most of the first half, with a number of good chances that went by the wayside. Pontius made them pay in first-half stoppage time, scoring after a long throw-in. It was Pontius again in the 71st minute, finishing off a quick counter by the Union. Kei Kamara cut the deficit in half, but it was not enough for Crew SC.

Real Salt Lake 2-1 Seattle Sounders

RSL overcame an early deficit and defeated Seattle. Osvaldo Alonso put the Sounders on the board first in the 26th minute. But Seattle was outshot over the course of the match, and RSL fought back. Sunny Obayan scored his first MLS goal just before halftime to level the match. Salt Lake got the breakthrough late, when Jamison Olave out-jumped Tyler Miller to head in the winning goal. Seattle has started with two losses in a row, which they can’t be pleased with.

Colorado Rapids 1-0 LA Galaxy

A late, late winner from Marco Pappa gave Colorado three points against LA. To the Rapids’ credit, they were deserving winners for their full performance. They out-possessed and out-shot the Galaxy, who were playing again without Giovani Dos Santos. Jelle Van Damme hit the bar, the closest LA came to scoring. Deep in stoppage time, the ball fell to Pappa in LA’s box, and he volleyed it hard, off the underside of the bar and in. The first goal of Colorado’s season earned them three full points.

Orlando City 1-1 Chicago Fire

Orlando was frustrated by a draw against 10-man Chicago. Cyle Larin scored again, giving the hosts an early lead. But they would be unable to hang on to that lead. David Accam’s raw speed was too much for Seb Hines to deal with on a ball over the top, and the Ghanaian forward got in behind and beat the keeper. Michael Harrington was sent off for a reckless challenge in the 32nd minute. For the second game in a row, the Lions had a lengthy man advantage and were unable to score.

New England Revolution 0-0 DC United

New England and DC played to a scoreless draw in Foxboro. The Revs controlled most of the match, with more than double DC’s shot total, but only managed three of those shots on target. New England can have complaints about a late no-call in the box when it appeared that Juan Agudelo was wrestled to the ground. Agudelo did not start, but came in when Charlie Davies left the match with an injury in the first half.