Rapids Tie Chivas USA Retain 3rd Place in Western Conference

DENVER (June 21 2006) – The Colorado Rapids held onto third place in the Western Conference with a 1-1 tie against Chivas USA Wednesday at INVESCO Field at Mile High.

(To view video highlights from this match CLICK HERE).

Chivas USA struck first in the 10th minute. Ante Razov cut a ball back to an open Juan Pablo Garcia inside the Rapids penalty area. Garcia then chipped the ball over Joe Cannon and into the back of the net.

Just two minutes later Clint Mathis nearly had his first goal of the year from a free kick. Mathis took the shot from about 25 yards out and it hit the crossbar before it bounced away from the goal.

In the 14th minute the Rapids' leading scorer Jovan Kirovski nearly added to the total. The former Manchester United player stole a pass from the visitors but his low attempt went wide of Preston Burpo’s net.

Terry Cooke looking for his first goal of the year nearly had it in the 18th minute. With Chivas looking to stop the MLS’s assists leader from adding to it the Englishman took a hard shot with his left foot that Burpo had a problem with but controlled before the ball crossed the line.

In the next minute it was Dedi Ben-Dayan’s turn to almost level the score. The Israeli took a wicked shot with his left foot that just flew over the crossbar.

Ben-Dayan did get the equalizer in the 58th minute after a period of pressure by the Rapids. Eric Denton dribbled down the endline and the Israeli alertly stepped away from his defender. Denton cut the ball back to Ben-Dayan who finished to the far post.

The goal was Ben-Dayan’s fourth in four games against Chivas USA. He has scored in every game he has played against the team from southern California.

Cooke had two chances in the 66th minute to put the home side in the lead. Ben-Dayan played a ball across the middle that made its way to Cooke. The Englishman’s first shot was blocked by Burpo and although he expertly followed his own rebound his second went over the goal.

Burpo came out of his goal in the 74th minute to deny Kirosvki. Cooke played a nice through ball to his teammate but the Chivas USA goalie snuffed the scoring chance out.

Substitute Thiago Martins nearly scored against his former team in the 79th minute when he was on the receiving end of a Nicolas Hernandez through ball. The Brazilian’s shot hit the side of the goal as he felt the full force of the onrushing Burpo.

Hunter Freeman almost had his first career goal in second half stoppage time when his header from 30 yards out just cleared the crossbar.

The Rapids have a short turnaround as they travel to take on FC Dallas at Pizza Hut Park this Saturday at 6:30 p.m. MST.

Colorado Rapids Man of the Match: Eric Denton

Scoring Summary:
CHV – Garcia (Razov Mendoza) 10
COL - Ben-Dayan (Denton) 58


Colorado Rapids – Joe Cannon Hunter Freeman Aitor Karanka Mike Petke Eric Denton Terry Cooke Clint Mathis (Thiago Martins 61) Kyle Beckerman Dedi Ben-Dayan (Jacob Peterson 78) Nicolas Hernandez Jovan Kirovski
Substitutes Not Used: Bouna Coundoul Fabrice Noel Chris Wingert Daniel Wasson Dan Gargan

Chivas USA – Preston Burpo Jonathan Bornstein Carlos Llamosa Jason Hernandez Tim Regan Francisco Mendoza Sacha Kljestan (Orlando Perez 67) Jesse Marsch Juan Pablo Garcia Ante Razov (Lawson Vaughn 90+) Francisco Palencia
Substitutes Not Used: Brad Guzan Esteban Arias Matt Taylor Rene Corona Drew Helm

Misconduct Summary:
CHV – Llamosa (Caution) 31
COL – Kirovski (Caution) 70
CHV – Garcia (Caution) 77

Referee: Mauricio Navarro
Referee's Assistants: Amato DeLuca Anthony Vasoli
4th Official: Ben Chouaf
Attendance: 6692