Rapids Reclaim First Place in Western Conference Split Points With Salt Lake in 1-1 Tie

COMMERCE CITY CO (THURSDAY MAY 10TH 2007)- The Colorado Rapids gave up an early lead once again in a game where own goals accounted for the only two scores of the night in a 1-1 tie at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. With the draw the Rapids reclaimed possession of the #1 spot in the Western Conference.
(To watch video highlights from this match click here).

The Rapids jumped on the scoreboard first yet again Thursday night when Herculez Gomez crossed a pass into the box in the 5th minute which deflected off Real Salt Lake defender Jack Stewart before caroming into the back of the net. The early goal was the 5th time in the last 6 games that the Rapids took the lead of a match.

Just a couple of minutes later Gomez crashed the net off of a Nicholas Hernandez shot placing the ball past Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando. The goal however was called off as Gomez was ruled to have been offside by assistant referee Paul Scott.

Only two minutes after the disallowed Gomez goal Real Salt Lake midfielder Freddy Adu placed a hard ball across the goal mouth which was deflected by Rapids defender Pablo Mastroeni and into the back of the net tying the game at 1-1 at the 15 minute mark of the first half.

Rapids goalkeeper Bouna Condoul stepped up late in the first half for Colorado making the first of two big saves against Adu. In a shot destined for the upper left corner Condoul came off his line to deflect the shot which was ultimately cleared out of danger by defender Mike Petke.

Freddy Adu challenged Condoul once more late in stoppage time when he sprinted down the right side uncontested before placing a shot hard and high on Condoul. The Rapids ‘keeper stayed strong in his net once again proving to be equal to the task as he punched the shot clear of danger with a left-handed stab.

Things were quiet to start the 2nd half until the 61st minute when forward Nico Hernandez took a pass from Greg Vanney and let a line drive fly off his right foot and just inches over the RSL crossbar.

Gomez looked to capitalize only minutes later for the Rapids when Real Salt Lake defender Jean-Martial Kipre slipped in the backfield giving Gomez a clear path to the net. Gomez dribbled just inside the box before sending a high shot which Rimando steered clear of his net.
The match went down in history as the first-ever MLS match to be decided by two own goals.

The Rapids’ next two games come against Eastern Conference foes the New York Red Bulls and the Kansas City Wizards. Sunday’s kickoff in New York is at 1 PM (MST) with the Official Rapids Away-Game Viewing Party taking place at Casey's in Stapleton. The Rapids return home on Saturday May 19th to take on the Wizards at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park; kickoff is 7 PM (MST) for that match.

May 10 2007 -- Dick's Sporting Goods Park
Colorado Rapids Man of the Match: Herculez Gomez

Goals by Period 1 2 Tot
Real Salt Lake 1 0 1
Colorado 1 0 1

Scoring Summary:
COL--own goal (Stewart) 4
RSL--own goal (Mastroeni) 15

REAL SALT LAKE--Nick Rimando Willis Forko Eddie Pope Jack Stewart
(Jean-Martial Kipre 61) Daniel Torres Freddy Adu Mehdi Ballouchy Chris
Klein Carey Talley Jeff Cunningham Atiba Harris (Chris Brown 67).

TOTAL SHOTS: 11 (Adu 5);SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Adu 4);FOULS: 8 (Ballouchy

COLORADO RAPIDS--Bouna Coundoul Dan Gargan Pablo Mastroeni Mike Petke Greg
Vanney Kyle Beckerman Terry Cooke (Jacob Peterson 90) Herculez Gomez Jovan
Kirovski (Jose Cancela 57) Roberto Brown Nicolas Hernandez.

TOTAL SHOTS: 12 (Gomez 5);SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Gomez 3);FOULS: 16 (Beckerman 3

Referee: Jair Marrufo
Referee's Assistants: Paul Scott Jose Corro
4th Official: Ben Chouaf
Attendance: 13458
Temperature: 73 and Sunny

A Burgundy Affair

Tuesday, October 17