Rapids Defeat Santos 2-0 in International Friendly Match

Rookie Casey Schmidt Scores Both Goals Against the Mexican First Division Powerhouse; Frenchman Gilles Grimandi Records First Point as a Rapids Player

LAS VEGAS NV (03-12-03)- The Colorado Rapids continued with their impressive 2003 preseason tour tonight defeating club Santos Laguna 2-0 at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas Nevada. The international friendly drew 6122 to the University of Las Vegas venue.

The first scoring opportunity of the game came early in the game when Rapids striker Casey Schmidt found a loose ball inside the Mexican team’s penalty area. Midfielder Mark Chung controlled a pass from Nat Borchers just outside the Santos box before unleashing a powerful shot that was deflected by a defender leaving the ball bouncing in front of the goalmouth. Schmidt reached for the ball but was just inches short of tipping the quick rebound into the net.

Club Santos reacted in the 12th minute when Rodrigo Ruiz lifted the ball into the heart of the Rapids area where he found forward Eduardo Lillingston. The Mexican striker’s header went just inches over the Rapids crossbar.
Schmidt found the back of the net in his second attempt inside the Santos penalty area in the 26th minute. Chris Henderson crossed the ball to the far side of the penalty area where he found Chris Carrieri who headed it back in towards the penalty spot. Schmidt read the pass and covered it as he turned around the defender before unleashing a shot that beat goalkeeper Christian Lucchietti for the 1-0 lead.

The Rapids struck again only four minutes later when Schmidt scored his second of the night. Frenchman Gilles Grimandi sent a through ball on a counter-attack that found the rookie striker running towards the Santo’s area. Schmidt controlled the ball before sending his shot past Lucchietti and into the upper right corner of the net.

With a two-goal lead the Rapids kept possession of the ball for the next 15 minutes heading into the half time break.

The same starting eleven returned for the second half and continued the offensive pressure. Chung was fouled at the edge of the Santos area and his free kick almost found the upper corner of the goal in the 57th minute.
Ten minutes later a Chung’s cross was flicked on to an open Henderson whose shot bounced off the left post. There were no more clear chances as both teams used substitutes to finish out the game.

The Colorado Rapids return to the Denver area on Thursday March 13th for two days before departing to Guadalajara Mexico to continue with the second leg of the 2003 preseason tour.

-Final Box Scores-

Lineups: COL: Vallow Hart Fraser Stewart (Jackson 78’) Kotchau Henderson Borchers (Beckerman 64’) Grimandi (Shak 72’) Chung Carrieri (Trembly 58’) Schmidt (Kingsley 77’)

SAN: Lucchetti López Caniza Palmeros Carreón Carino Rodriguez Noriega Rangel Ruiz Lillingston

Scoring: COL: Schmidt (Carrieri Henderson 26’); Schmidt (Grimandi 30’) SAN: NONE

Cations/Ejections: COL: Kotchau (13’) Beckerman (66’) SAN: Rodriguez (18’) Lillingston (66’)