In a week like they've never experienced, the Rapids faced a postponed game, Open Cup loss, delayed flight, countless hours of uncertainty and a 2-0 victory over the Western Conference leaders, LAFC, at home. The Burgundy Boys have shown unparalleled resiliency in the past five days to prove that yet again, they are a force to be reckoned with in the league.

"I've talked about the character of this group forever," said head coach Robin Fraser after the shutout on Saturday. "And we knew we were in a tough situation and we didn't shy away from it, we didn't make excuses. Considering that we were playing 48 hours ago, I can't be more proud of the group."

Wednesday

After departing for Minneapolis on Tuesday afternoon post-training, the Rapids had already spent over 24 hours in the Twin Cities getting ready for their first 2022 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup matchup with Minnesota United FC. The first 19 minutes on the field saw two goals scored, the opener from the Loons' Abu Danladi in the eighth minute, followed by a 15th minute equalizer from Nico Mezquida to level the playing field.

The Burgundy Boys had limited time to celebrate their goal, however. Just moments later, the first shot of lightning hit the Minneapolis sky, delaying the game by 30 minutes. It was a trend that would last the rest of the evening, as both sides could only wait in locker rooms and watch from the tunnels as lightning flashed and Allianz Field quickly turned into an unplayable lake of a pitch.

The Rapids and Loons waited on word from U.S. Soccer until 10:50 p.m. local time to see if a match could be played. The game was postponed until the next afternoon, and both sides headed back to homes and hotel rooms to get as much rest in before returning to the pitch in the morning.

Thursday

Per U.S. Soccer rules, the postponed game picked up where it ended on Wednesday night in the 18th minute at a scoreline of 1-1. It wasn’t until the waning moments when the Loons took the upper hand with an 87-minute goal from Emanuel Reynoso to seal the deal for Minnesota and send the Rapids crashing out of the U.S. Open Cup.

Fast-forward to 8 p.m. and the Burgundy Boys are getting ready to load up the buses and head to the airport for a flight home to the Mile High City when the news comes through––there will be no more flights out of Minneapolis for the night and the Rapids would not be taking off until early Friday morning.

Despite nothing going to plan in the past 24 hours, Colorado’s coaching staff made it a point to find motivation in the adversity.

Friday

After an early wake-up call and breakfast, Colorado took to the air at 9 a.m. to head home to DICK’S Sporting Goods Park. Once arriving back to the stadium, there was around 30 minutes for the squad to recollect themselves before catching a quick video session and heading out to the training pitch.

“We had a good collective understanding of what it is we needed to do,” said Fraser. “Go home, get your rest, see you guys in less than 24 hours. And then we go again. To think that you're going home and then you're not, to think that you're going to finish a game and then you're not. And it just keeps dragging on and dragging on. Emotionally, it's a real drain. I went home in the afternoon [Friday] and couldn't keep my eyes open. So I can only imagine how they felt because they had played.”

Saturday

The Burgundy Boys made their way back to the stadium at 11 a.m. on Saturday with one thing in mind--securing three points at home and defending their regular season unbeaten streak at altitude against the Western Conference leaders, LAFC.

Rapids fans know exactly what happened next. The two first-half penalty kick goals scored by Gyasi Zardes and Diego Rubio, the atmosphere of DICK’S Sporting Goods Park, and the satisfaction of delivering LAFC their first shutout of the season, all on top of the events of last week were more than worthy of high praise.

"We knew going into the game it was going to be a tough one regardless of the circumstances, and then obviously the circumstances that transpired last week were less than ideal," said defender Danny Wilson. "[The result] didn't tell us anything we didn't already know. We know that when we play like that, with that togetherness, with that desire, with that quality, we're no match for anybody. It was a tough week last week, tough of the body and the mind, but good to get three points."

The resiliency of the team has become a main theme for the Rapids since Fraser joined on as manager in 2019. Time and time again, the Burgundy Boys refuse to let up, regardless of the circumstances. It is that determination and ability to adjust that earned Colorado a top of the West finish in 2022, back-to-back playoff appearances in 2020 and 2021, and victory over the current Supporters’ Shield leaders after a bizarre week.

“I'm so f---ing proud of this team,” he said. “The amount of adversity we've had to deal with this week, extremely, extremely challenging circumstances. I mean, we were playing 48 hours ago. That's unprecedented. I said to the team, I love being tested. Because then you really see the character of the group. And we were on the front foot from the beginning of the game. So really proud of the effort that they put in, the guys who started, the guys who came off the bench. It was just relentless. And coming off the week that we are coming off, I could not be more proud of them.”

Defender and Saturday's Man of the Match, Auston Trusty, reiterated his manager's sentiments.

“It's our mindset,” he said after the shutout. “If we come out and do our job with our mindset, I don't think anybody in this league can beat us. Genuinely. We're only people standing in our way. If we come out with aggressiveness and do our thing, I don't think anybody can stop us.”