Rapids Open Sold Out Dick's Sporting Goods Park With Victory

Commerce City Colo. (Saturday April 7 2007)- The Colorado Rapids opened Dick’s Sporting Goods Park with a bang by defeating DC United 2-1 in front of a sellout crowd of 18086 in the team’s fist opening day victory.

Rapids goalie Bouna Coundoul made his first stop of the game in the eighth minute as he slid to pop up a shot from Luciano Emilio.

Niko Hernandez had the Rapids' first scoring opportunity in the 11th minute when he was inches away from redirecting a Herculez Gomez cross into the net.

One day after his 25th birthday Gomez put the Rapids up 1-0 in the 19th minute as he headed home a Terry Cooke corner kick. Last year Cooke lead the league in assists with 12.
Gomez goes into the history books joining former Rapids players Marcelo Balboa (Mile High Stadium) and Chris Henderson (Invesco Field) as the first Rapids players to tally in the home stadium of the Rapids for the first time.

Roberto Brown made it 2-0 in the 35th minute. After playing a layoff to Kyle Beckerman the Panamanian floated to the middle of the penalty area. Meanwhile Beckerman’s cross was put back into the middle by Cooke and Brown blasted it home to give the home side the 2-0 lead.

Coundoul saved a Christian Gomez free kick in the 49th minute to keep his side up 2-0 against last year’s Supporters Shield winners.

DC got a goal back in the 80th minute. Emilio headed in a Kasali Yinka Casal cross as he stood wide open in Colorado’s penalty area.

In the 86th minute Cooke put in a dangerous ball from the right. The Rapids’ Gomez was leveled as he attempted to get to the cross.

United’s Ben Olsen nearly leveled the score in the game’s stoppage time. His 20-yard shot was smothered by a diving Coundoul.

The Rapids will play their next game on Sunday April 15 at 6 p.m. against the Chicago Fire at Dick’s SportingGoodsPark. Tickets are available at www.ColoradoRapids.com or by calling (303) 825-GOAL.
Colorado Rapids Man of the Match: Terry Cooke

Scoring Summary:
COL- Gomez (Cooke) 19

COL- Brown (Cooke Beckerman) 35

DC- Emilio (Casal Olsen)

Lineups:

Colorado Rapids – Bouna Coundoul Brandon Prideaux Ugo Ihemelu Mike Petke Greg Vanney Terry Cooke Kyle Beckerman Jovan Kirovski (Pablo Mastroeni 60) Herculez Gomez Roberto Brown Nicolas Hernandez (Jacob Peterson79)
Substitutes Not Used: Zach Thornton Nico Colaluca Dan Gargan Daniel Wasson Chris Wingert

DC United– Troy Perkins Facundo Erpen Bobby Boswell Bryan Namoff Stephen deRoux (Kasali Yinka Casal 58) Brian Carroll Christian Gomez Justin Moose (Fred 55) Ben Olson Luciano Emilio Jaime Moreno

Substitutes Not Used: Jay Nolly Devon McTavish Clyde Simms Jamil Walker John Wilson

Misconduct Summary:
COL- Beckerman (Caution; Game Disrepute) 9

DC- Olsen (Caution; Reckless Foul) 10

DC- Moreno (Caution; Reckless Foul) 34

COL- Petke (Caution; Reckless Foul) 49

COL- Vanney (Caution; Professional Foul) 90+

Referee: Michael Kennedy
Referee's Assts: Greg Barkley Corey Rockwell
4th Official: Jozef Batko
Attendance: 18086