CARSON, Calif. – Omar Cummings and Conor Casey each scored a goal as the Colorado Rapids stormed past the Los Angeles Galaxy 3-1 at The Home Depot Center on Saturday.
With the loss, the Galaxy failed to clinch the Supporters’ Shield and now may have to face a win-or-finish-in-second scenario. If Real Salt Lake beat Colorado on Saturday, Oct. 23, the Galaxy would need to beat FC Dallas the following day to finish atop the Western Conference; anything else and LA would finish in second place.
Watch: Full Match Highlights
Before the opening whistle blew, Colorado found out they had reached the playoffs for the first time since 2006 after Kansas City lost 1-0 at home to New England earlier on Saturday.
The Galaxy opened the scoring in the ninth minute, when Edson Buddle tested Matt Pickens from outside the penalty area. The ball deflected off Drew Moor and sailed over Pickens’ head to start LA off on the right foot.
Typically, when LA score first, they win. That had been the case in all other 16 games the Galaxy found the net first. In fact, so dominant have the Galaxy been that they had never scored first and fallen behind in the same game this year. But that would not be the case on Saturday.
Colorado got back into the game nine minutes later, benefitting from some Galaxy hospitality. Sean Franklin’s botched clearance attempt of a Rapids corner kick banged off Buddle and into the back of the Galaxy net.
The fearsome duo of Cummings and Casey would go on to combine for a splendid goal on the half hour mark to put Colorado ahead. Jeff Larentowicz did well to win a ball in the middle of the field. Pablo Mastroeni wound up with the sphere and slipped it out to Cummings on the right flank, who darted down the edge of the penalty area and fed a streaking Casey. The big man then slid and buried the ball past Donovan Ricketts to give the Rapids a 2-1 lead.
Colorado were a bit unlucky not to go into the intermission with a two-goal edge as Brian Mullan rattled a shot off the woodwork late in the first half.
Once resumed the second half, however, Cummings would make sure the Rapids added a third tally. In the 61st minute, Casey found the Jamaican striker on a counterattack down the left side of the penalty area. Cummings then beat Ricketts to the far post and Colorado took a 3-1 lead over the Galaxy. It was the 5th time this year that both Casey and Cummings scored in the same game.
The Galaxy had a late goal called back for offside. Even if it the goal would have stood, it ultimately would not have been enough.
The win for the Rapids was the first after surrendering the first goal since May 6, 2006, ending a streak of 0-51-17 when giving up the first goal of the match.
LA -- Edson Buddle 17 (Chris Birchall 2, Landon Donovan 15) 9
COL -- own goal (Edson Buddle) 18
COL -- Conor Casey 12 (Omar Cummings 3, Pablo Mastroeni 3) 30
COL -- Omar Cummings 13 (Conor Casey 6) 67
COL -- Wells Thompson (caution; Tactical Foul) 24
COL -- Conor Casey (caution; Reckless Tackle) 35
Colorado Rapids -- Matt Pickens, Kosuke Kimura, Marvell Wynne, Drew Moor, Wells Thompson, Brian Mullan, Jeff Larentowicz, Pablo Mastroeni (Scott Palguta 78), Jamie Smith, Conor Casey, Omar Cummings (Macoumba Kandji 83).
Substitutes Not Used: Andre Akpan, Danny Earls, Ross LaBauex, Claudio Lopez, Ian Joyce.
Los Angeles Galaxy -- Donovan Ricketts, Sean Franklin, Omar Gonzalez, Gregg Berhalter (Alex Cazumba 73), A.J. DeLaGarza, Chris Birchall (Eddie Lewis 42), David Beckham, Juninho, Michael Stephens (Mike Magee 76), Edson Buddle, Landon Donovan.
Substitutes Not Used: Bryan Jordan, Jovan Kirovski, Leonardo, Josh Saunders.
Referee: Kevin Stott; Referee's Assistants: Darren Clark; Kermit Quisenberry
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal
Weather: Cloudy and 65 degrees