Monday, July 11, 2011

Rapids Drench The Whitecaps

To quote my game preview:
2-1 win, goals by Casey and Cummings. C+C Goal Factory find their rhythm and put the Rapids up 2, but the defense continues to have at least one breakdown a game to make things interesting in the second half.
That's pretty much what happened. Palguta got the second goal instead of Cummings, but otherwise I was dead on. The Rapids controlled most of the first half and midway through Casey took advantage. Jamie Smith played a great cross into the box and an onrushing Conor chested it down to his right foot and knocked it across his body to the far post for a 1-0 lead. As is typical for the Rapids they almost gave the lead right back on a close shot, but other than that they took the lead into half pretty much uncontested.

The second half started much like the first. In the 54th minute Folan scuffed a cross from Koz, but Casey jumped on it, got former Rapids keeper Joe Cannon on the ground, but couldn't hit the tight angle into the empty net. It was close enough that the goal music started and the cannon was fired. 14 minutes later Smith crossed a free kick into the box and Casey headed it towards goal, only for Cannon to push it away. Luckily it fell right to Palguta's feet and all he had to do was chip it over the prone Cannon to double the Rapids lead. After the goal Colorado relaxed a bit and Vancouver took control of the game. In the 77th minute the Whitecaps made it pay off. A great show of passing and finding where the Rapids weren't left Sanvezzo rounding a prone Pickens and hitting the back of the net. The Whitecaps continued to keep things interesting before Colorado could see out the rest of the time for their first home win in over 3 months.

My key to the game was controlling the game start to finish. They didn't quite get that done, but they controlled the majority of the game, and against an expansion team, that was enough.

Other Observations:
  • Jamie Smith had a great game and if it weren't for Casey doing even better on the end of his crosses Smith would have been the Man of the Match.
  • No one defender was to blame for the goal, it was a well worked sequence where Vancouver pulled everyone out of position and exploited the holes.
  • Folan had a better game, but still isn't gelling with the team.
  • Similarly Cummings hasn't re-found his touch this season. He's still the second best forward on the team by a good margin, but C+C Goal Factory isn't there yet.
  • Wells Thompson had a solid game, nothing more, but that's a step forward.
  • Wallace must have insulted Gary Smith's wife or something. There's no reason Earls should be starting in front of him.
  • Palguta had a good game, but he shouldn't be playing in front of Wallace either.
  • Hopefully this is the start of a run, but the Mullan revenge match next week could be ugly.
Player of the Game: Conor Casey. One goal, one unofficial assist, and one almost goal. He was a monster out there and looks like he wants to put the team on his back and carry them the rest of the season.

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