View Full Version : Rapids roll with late goals in Denver

08-18-05, 04:53 PM
DENVER - The Colorado Rapids finally broke down the New England Revolution, getting a pair of late goals for a 2-0 victory on Wednesday night at Invesco Field at Mile High, running their unbeaten streak to four games.
Alain Nkong and Jean Philippe Peguero scored in the final 12 minutes as the Rapids strengthened their hold on fourth place in the Western Conference and the Revolution ended a rough 12-day stretch that saw them split their four games.

The opening minutes of the match saw the teams fighting for control of the game without allowing the other side to exhibit any sort of attacking fluidity. The Revolution had a good early chance when defender Joe Franchino let fly with a free kick that forced the first save of the game out of Rapids 'keeper Joe Cannon.

Kyle Beckerman then brought a save out of Reis when a corner kick wasn't cleared, but the game soon evolved into a midfield battle with neither team committing many fouls nor creating real chances. A couple of opportunities for Luchi Gonzalez brought some attention, first when he took a pass inside the area only to see his first-time shot deflected between two defenders.

Five minutes later he was nearly gifted a glorious chance when Reis didn't collect the ball after coming off his line, but he couldn't get an effort off.

Revolution head coach Steve Nicol, with two starters lost to national team duty in Taylor Twellman and Steve Ralston, as well as Pat Noonan injured, changed his team to go with four defenders and Clint Dempsey as a lone forward. New England didn't get forward much, but Dempsey forced a good save from Cannon in the 30th minute after he stripped Beckerman of the ball.

The Rapids should have taken the lead in the 35th minute when Terry Cooke sent in a cross from the right flank and found Nkong unmarked at the top of the six, but his header went well high.

Colorado came out the stronger after the break, spurred by the halftime substitution of Pablo Mastroeni, making his first appearance in seven games. He was immediately at the heart of the Rapids attack, and had a rebound shot in the 47th minute that he put right at Reis.

Gonzalez then had one more quality chance when he was put in behind the Revolution defense and alone on Reis, but saw his effort go wide of the post. He was then replaced by Fabrice Noel.

Nkong then again forced Reis into action when his long-range shot was saved and spilled by the Revolution 'keeper, but Peguero just couldn't come up with the rebound, though the Rapids won a corner. On the ensuing set piece Peguero again saw his shot fly off target, then in the 63rd minute he had the same fate after again receiving a cross from Cooke and his header nearly got by Reis, but not quite.

On a rare foray forward, the Revolution nearly grabbed the lead when a rolling cross came in from the right but Dempsey couldn't quite stretch far enough to connect with the ball and get it on target.

Seconds later Peguero found the range, this time getting a header on goal from a Nat Borchers cross, but it went right into the same hands of Reis.

But Colorado finally broke through in the 78th minute. Peguero's hard work in the left corner won the ball, and he found David "Dedi" Ben-Dayan, whose lovely flick went to Eric Denton. He laid the ball back to Nkong, who sent a powerful low drive from outside the area that beat the diving Reis.

The Rapids then delivered the knockout blow in the 84th minute. Noel fought off a Jay Heaps challenge and went into the area alone. But he was slammed to the turf as Reis came racing off his line, and referee Alex Prus immediately produced a direct red card for the Revolution 'keeper and a penalty kick for the home side.

Doug Warren came in for his first minutes in a league match this season, and his first touch was picking the ball out of the back of the net as Peguero sent him the wrong way as he converted from the penalty spot.

MLSnet.com Man of the Match: Alain Nkong (Colorado Rapids)

Yuri Vasquez is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.

New England Revolution (12-5-6) vs. Colorado Rapids (8-11-4)
August 17, 2005 -- Invesco Field at Mile High

Scoring Summary:
COL -- Alain Nkong 5 (Eric Denton 3, David Ben Dayan 1) 78
COL -- Jean Philippe Peguero 5 (penalty kick) 86

New England Revolution -- Matt Reis, Jay Heaps, Michael Parkhurst, Joe Franchino, James Riley, Andy Dorman, Daniel Hernandez (Khano Smith 71), Shalrie Joseph, Marshall Leonard (Luke Vercollone 83), Clint Dempsey, Jose Cancela (Doug Warren 84).

Substitutes Not Used: Jeff Larentowicz, Pat Noonan.

TOTAL SHOTS: 4 (Clint Dempsey 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 2 (Clint Dempsey 1, Joe Franchino 1); FOULS: 15 (Shalrie Joseph 4); OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 3 (Jose Cancela 3); SAVES: 6 (Matt Reis 5)

Colorado Rapids -- Joe Cannon, Hunter Freeman (Pablo Mastroeni 46), Nat Borchers, Mike Petke, Ritchie Kotschau, Terry Cooke (David Ben Dayan 70), Kyle Beckerman, Alain Nkong, Eric Denton, Luchi Gonzalez (Fabrice Noel 57), Jean Philippe Peguero.

Substitutes Not Used: Leo Cullen, Byron Foss, Dan Gargan, Wolde Harris, Ricky Lewis, Guy Melamed.

TOTAL SHOTS: 18 (Alain Nkong 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 8 (Alain Nkong 3, Jean Philippe Peguero 3); FOULS: 12 (Jean Philippe Peguero 3); OFFSIDES: 4 (Jean Philippe Peguero 2); CORNER KICKS: 2 (Terry Cooke 2); SAVES: 2 (Joe Cannon 2)

Misconduct Summary:
COL -- Alain Nkong (caution; Delaying a Restart) 32
NE -- Clint Dempsey (caution; Reckless Foul) 38
NE -- Shalrie Joseph (caution; Reckless Foul) 74
NE -- Matt Reis (ejection; Serious Foul Play) 83

Referee: Alex Prus
Referee's Assistants: George Gansner; Jose Corro
4th Official: Scott McCaslin
Attendance: 6,881
Time of Game: 1:52
Weather: Clear-and-81-degrees