Monday, August 5, 2013

Rocky Mountain Cup Back Where It Belongs

We got the Cup!  It was a hard fought 2-2 draw where the Rapids really should have had a win, but a draw was all we needed to get the Cup so mission accomplished.  It didn't start pretty though.  Just 77 seconds in FSL was up 1-0.  Gil found the gap between Klute and Mera on the left side, getting the ball to Beckerman on the endline.  Grabavoy was left wide open in front of goal so it was an easy cross from the former Rapid to him to put the visitors in front.  The lead didn't last long as 7 minutes later my prediction of a Caribbean rookie goal came true.  Wynne flicked an Irwin goal kick on with his head and Deshorn Brown outraced and outfought former Rapid Nat Borchers to get a flying foot on it and got it past an onrushing Rimando to get back to a level score.

Sadly that didn't last either.  In the 20th minute Moor took down Findley in the box.  Another PK chance for Saborio.  Just as the teams were lining up for the kick though lightning struck northwest of the stadium and the refs immediately put the game into a lightning delay.  We all headed up into the concourses for an hour while the electricity cleared.  In the process the heavens opened and it started to pour.  The rain would continue until about the 70th minute.

After the unexpected delay the teams lined up for the kick again.  Irwin guessed right but Saborio hit a prefect PK for the 2-1 lead.  Things were looking bad at this point as the Rapids only had 1 shot on goal the rest of the half.  It was a great long distance laser from Buddle but Rimando was up to the task.  FSL wasn't any better, with only a long shot to show for their effort.

After the expected halftime break the game flipped.  Both teams were forced to make an injury sub before the expected halftime and FSL losing Morales (Colorado lost Harris) was a big change that the Rapids took advantage of.  For the first 15 minutes or so the Rapids were just hammering at the door but couldn't break through.  At half they had brought in Castrillon for Wynne and that seemed to really up the pressure.  They then lost Buddle in the 55th minute to injury, bringing in Cascio.  In the 70th minute the planned sub paid off.  Powers hit a great diagonal through ball to Klute deep in the corner.  Chris one-timed the ball across the front of goal where Castrillon was flying in and handcuffed Rimando by heading it just inside him on the near post while he was leaning far post.  2-2 and the Rapids were back in the Rocky Mountain Cup lead.

The Rapids weren't done, wanting all 3 points.  They had 4 shots on target after the 80th minute, forcing Rimando into big saves each time.  FSL had one last chance that Irwin had to dive to save just before the final whistle but he kept it out and the Rapids claimed the Rocky Mountain Cup, at home for the first time.

My key to the match was bringing the Cup home.   Just to make sure, I had to check the Cup out myself.
Thanks to C38 Grand Poobah and C10 member Mark Bodmer for the pic

Random Thoughts:
  • Just an amazing game.  A 62 minute delay due to lighting, pouring rain, Rapids coming back from a deficit not once but twice, and the raising of the Rocky Mountain Cup at the end.
  • Drew Moor really showed he's the leader of this team at the end of the game.  He immediately sprinted over to 108 screaming and just smashed the signboard with his foot.  We'll probably be able to see a pretty good dent in it when we go back for the next game.
  • As the captain he was the one who got to accept the trophy from the fans and raise it.  As he did the lid fell of and smashed the Grand Poobah in the face, cutting his lip.  As he said in his Facebook apology to Mark, both the players and fans bleed for this team. :D
  • All that said, stupid tackle by Drew to draw the PK.  Mera was in postion to cover and he didn't need to dive in like that.
  • I think the forced back line change of putting Mera in and pushing O'Neill forward to cover for the suspended Thomas cost us on both goals.  Wynne clearly had no idea Grabavoy was his man once everyone shifted to the left to deal with the threat.
  • Nice job by Brown to finally beat a keeper in a break-away situation.  That gives him the team lead in goals with 6.
  • Klute picked up his team-leading 6th assist on the Cup winning goal, while Powers moved into 2nd with his 5th.
  • Outside of the great first half shot, Buddle was a waste.  Not only that he had two mind-numbingly stupid fouls that showed he's not mentally in the game and just doesn't care.  Time to send him to the bench if we sign Sanchez or Torres, or maybe just for Castrillon.
  • I couldn't watch the 90th minute free kick by FSL that took place in front of 108, even going so far as to turn my back to the field.  That's exactly the type of set play that FSL has used to stab us in the heart in these type of games in recent years.
  • Cascio finally got a couple of his long shots on target.  He's a danger if he can keep doing that.
  • All time the Rapids lead the series with FSL 10-9-9.  Pretty even.

Player of the Match: Jaime Castrillon.  Really, I have to explain this?

No comments: