Rapids Come Back Twice To Earn Draw at Kansas City

Kansas City Mo. (Sunday July 22 2007) - The Colorado Rapids went down twice tonight to the Kansas City Wizards but fought back for a 2-2 draw and an important road point at Arrowhead Stadium.

(To watch video highlights from this match click here).

Niko Hernandez had the first scoring opportunity of the game in the seventh minute. The clearance from a Jose Cancela corner kick fell to the Argentine and his blast from 20 yards went just over the bar.

The game’s first shot on goal also came from Hernandez. In the 11th minute he headed a Cancela free kick but goalkeeper Kevin Hartman was positioned well to make the save.

A minute later Herculez Gomez sent a shot just wide of the net after getting past national team defender Jimmy Conrad by poking the ball through his Copa America teammate’s legs and running onto it himself.

Eddie Johnson scored on Kansas City’s first shot on goal in the 24th minute. He one-timed a pass from Davy Arnaud beyond Bouna Coundoul.

Gomez earned a penalty for the Rapids in the 39th minute when Conrad pushed him over Hartman. Jovan Kirovski stepped up and scored his third goal of the year for the Rapids.

Just a minute later Johnson reinstated the Kansas City lead when he pushed in an Arnaud shot that bounced off the post.

Coundoul was forced to make a first half stoppage time save on Sasha Victorine as he came out of his goal and knocked the shot away from the goal.

Gomez nearly had his fifth goal of the season in the 52nd minute. Terry Cooke threaded a pass between three Wizards but it was just out of the reach of the Rapids' leading scorer.

A 54th minute free kick from Cancela didn’t have the same magic as his goal against the California Victory in the US Open Cup as Hartman made the save.

Facundo Erpen scored his first goal in a Rapids uniform in the 77th minute. Less than minute after being denied by Kerry Zavagnin the Argentine flicked a Terry Cooke corner kick into the net with his head.

Coundoul preserved the point for the Rapids late in the second half as he stopped Arnaud dead on a breakaway.

The Rapids will enjoy an off week in MLS play before traveling to Texas to take on FC Dallas on August 4. The 6:30 MT kickoff will be broadcast by Altitude Sports and Entertainment.

Scoring Summary:
KC – Johnson (Arnaud Victorine) 24

COL – Kirovski (penalty) 42

KC – Johnson (unassisted) 43

COL – Erpen (Cooke) 77

Lineups:

Colorado Rapids – Bouna Coundoul Brandon Prideaux Ugo Ihemelu Facundo Erpen Niko Hernandez (Jacob Peterson 74) Pablo Mastroeni Jose Cancela Mehdi Ballouchy Terry Cooke Herculez Gomez (Omar Cummings 84) Jovan Kirovski
Substitutes Not Used: Zach Thornton Colin Clark Stephen Keel Nico Colaluca Conor Casey

Kansas City Wizards – Kevin Hartman Jose Burciaga Jimmy Conrad Nick Garcia Jack Jewsbury Michael Harrington Kerry Zavagnin Carlos Marinelli Sasha Victorine (Kurt Morsink 46) Eddie Johnson (Yura Movsisyan 81 Ryan Pore 89) Davy Arnaud

Substitutes Not Used: Eric Kronberg Will John Tyson Wahl Ryan Raybould

Misconduct Summary:
KC – Marinelli (Caution) 23

KC – Johnson (Caution) 33

KC – Hartman (Caution) 40

COL – Gomez (Caution) 46+

KC – Arnaud (Caution) 49+

COL – Ballouchy (Caution) 50+

COL – Coundoul (Caution) 62

COL – Ihemelu (Caution) 66

KC – Burciaga (Ejection) 67

Referee: Tim Weyland

Referees Assts.: Anthony Vasoli Kyle Borne

Fourth Official: Andrew Chapin