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Balboa’s bicycle the highlight of Rapids’ 3-2 win at Columbus.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (Saturday, April 22, 2000) -- They might as well end the competition for "Goal of the Year" right now and award it to Marcelo Balboa. Nobody will match the spectacular bicycle kick he netted, helping the Colorado Rapids edge the Columbus Crew 3-2 before 12,295 at Columbus Crew Stadium tonight.

Junior Agogo had a goal and an assist for the Rapids (3-3, 9 points) who benefitted from the Crew having to play with 10 men for the final 69 minutes after midfielder Robert Warzycha was shown a red card for a serious foul play.

It will, however, be Balboa’s tally which put the Rapids ahead to stay, 2-1 in the 55th minute, that will have people talking for some time. Anders Limpar sent a long cross from the right side to Balboa just inside the top center of the penalty area. Balboa flipped and drilled a right-footed shot into the top left corner from 15 yards.

"What do you say about a goal like that?" asked acting coach Rene Miramontes, filling in for Glenn Myernick, who was at his daughter’s ballet recital. "It's one of those rare occasions when a play happens that shows the beauty of this game. The finish was unbelievable, and the ball from Limpar was no slouch either."

The goal brought back memories of Balboa's near-bicycle-kick finish against Colombia in World Cup USA '94,

"It felt the same as 1994, but that one hit the boards and this one I looked up and saw it hitting the net," said Balboa of his second tally of the season. "I got a little excited, you could say. I don't think I could ever come close to making that one again. The ball was behind me, I saw it the whole time and lined it up, then just hit it as hard as I could. The one against Colombia was special because it was such a great win for us and for the country, but this one was pretty fun, too."

Five minutes after Balboa’s strike, Agogo made it 3-1, taking a pass from Jason Moore into the box before darting past a Crew defender and ripping a 15-yard blast by goalkeeper Mark Dougherty

Dante Washington notched his second two-goal game of the season for Columbus (2-3-1, 7), cutting the margin to 3-2 in the 80th minute, pulling a loose ball away from Rapids keeper David Kramer, and easily rolled it into the net for his fourth goal of the season.

Washington gave Columbus a 1-0 advantage in the sixth minute after a long diagonal ball from Warzycha found teammate Brian West on the right wing. West collected the ball in full stride and cut quickly past Colorado defender Lance Key. West's low rolling cross into the box slid past a fallen Balboa to Washington, who made one quick cut and slid the ball easily past Kramer.

The Rapids answered four minutes later when Jorge Dely Valdes slotted home the rebound from an awkard goal-line clearance by Ansil Elcock to make it 1-1. The goal ended a flurry of chances for the Rapids with Anders Limpar and Key both having chances cleared off the line during the exchange.

Warzycha's expulsion was the first Columbus ejection in 59 MLS contests, dating back to July 29, 1998, when Ricardo Iribarren (now with Dallas) was ejected in a match at Miami.

"Warzycha got a red card and he deserved that," Columbus coach Tom Fitzgerald said. "He’s got to be smarter than that. (Sixty-nine minutes) is a long time to be down a man."

Colorado Rapids 3, Columbus Crew 2

Lineups: Columbus - Mark Dougherty (Matt Napoleon 69), Michael Clark, Ansil Elcock, Mike Lapper (Jeff Cunningham 78), John DeBrito (Roland Aguilera 77), Brian West, Robert Warzycha, John Wilmar Perez, Mario Gori (Mike Duhaney 64), Dante Washington, Brian McBride. Colorado - David Kramer, Scott Vermillion, Marcelo Balboa, Chris Martinez, David Vaudreuil, Anders Limpar (Danny DeVall 60), Paul Bravo (Lance Key 1), Paul Dougherty, Jason Moore, Junior Agogo, Jorge Dely Valdes

Columbus -Washington (West, Warzycha) 6.
Colorado - Dely Valdes (unassisted) 10.
Colorado - Balboa (Limpar, Agogo) 55.
Colorado - Agogo (Dougherty, Moore) 60.
Columbus - Washington (McBride, Cunningham) 80.

Total shots: Columbus 17 (McBride 7), Colorado 22 (Agogo 7). Shots on goal: Columbus 5 (McBride 3), Coloeado 11 (Dely Valdes 4). Saves: Columbus 6 (Dougherty 4, Napoleon 2), Colorado - Kramer 3. Fouls: Columbus 14 (five players with 2), Colorado 23 (Vermillion 4, Key 4). Offside: Columbus 0, Colorado 3. Corner kicks: Columbus 4, Colorado 6. Yellow card cautions: Columbus - McBride 49, Elcock 62, Clark 78; Colorado - Key 83, Dely Valdes 86. Red card ejection: Columbus - Warzycha 21. Possession percentage: Columbus 47, Colorado 53.

Referee: Rich Grady. Referee's assistants: Glenn Prechac, Reggie Rutty. Attendance: 12,295 at Columbus (Ohio) Crew Stadium. Weather: Overcast, cloudy, chilly.

Kansas City Wizards 1, Tampa Bay Mutiny 0

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Striker Mo Johnston scored early and the Kansas City Wizards protected the lead for a 1-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Mutiny before 10,053 at Arrowhead Stadium Saturday night.

The Wizards (5-0-1, 16) maintained the best record in the league and first place in the Western Division over the Los Angeles Galaxy (4-0-2, 14).

Kansas City permitted the Mutiny only one shot on goal. "We played well enough to win," Wizards goalkeeper Tony Meola said. "You can't ask for much more, playing three games in eight days and getting nine points out of it."

In the sixth minute, Johnston finished off a Matt McKeon pass from deep inside the penalty area. Following a foul suffered by Brandon Prideaux, McKeon launched a quick restart that caught the Mutiny defense asleep. Virtually unmarked deep inside the box, Johnston fired a shot past Mutiny goalkeeper Scott Garlick.

"I got the ball down and saw Mo Jo wide open," McKeon said. "I just played it and he had a great strike. Opportunities are always there, you just have to find them."

Tampa Bay (3-3, 9) wasted a grand opportunity in the 59th minute when K.C. defender Nick Garcia took down the Mutiny's Josh Keller down inside the penalty area, but forward Mamadou Diallo fired the ensuing penalty kick wide of the goal.

"We're not playing poorly on the road, just unlucky," Keller said. "We're definitely angry that we have no points on the road, but we're playing well at home. We know we can win, we just need to get the first goal on the road."

Kansas City Wizards 1, Tampa Bay Mutiny 0

Lineups: Kansas City - Tony Meola, Nick Garcia, Brandon Prideaux, Peter Vermes, Matt McKeon, Kerry Zavagnin, Chris Henderson, Chris Klein (Uche Okafor 74), Preki (Brian Johnson 68), Mo Johnston, Miklos Molnar (Chris Brown 84). Tampa Bay - Scott Garlick, Joseph Addo, Steve Trittschuh, Ritchie Kotschau, Dominic Kinnear (Eric Quill 46), Josh Keller, Kalin Bankov, Carlos Valderrama (Amos Magee 81), Steve Ralston, Raul Diaz Arce (Manuel Lagos 46), Mamadou Diallo.

Kansas City - Johnston (McKeon) 6.

Toal shots: Kansas City 18 (McKeon 4, Molnar 4). Shots on goal: Kansas City 7 (Henderson 2), Tampa Bay 1 (Bankov 1). Saves: Kansas City - Meola 1; Tampa Bay - Garlick 6. Fouls:Kansas City 21 (Zavagnin 4), Tampa Bay 14 (Diallo 5). Offside: Kansas City 3, Tampa Bay 1. Corner kicks: Kansas City 1, Tampa Bay 6. Yellow card cautions: Tampa Bay - Diallo 10, Kinnear 38. Possession percentage: Kansas City 44, Ttampa Bay 56.

Referee: Alex Prus. Referee's assistants: Roger Itaya, Francisco Sanchez. Attendance: 10,053 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. Weather: Overcast, arid, 78 degrees.

San Jose Earthquakes 5, Dallas Burn 0

San Jose , Calif. -- With top striker Khodadad Azizi serving the first game of a three-match suspension, the San Jose Earthquakes received two goals and an assists from midfielder Ronald Cerritos and two goals from Abdul Thompson Conteh in a barrage that buried the Dallas Burn 5-0 before 8,871 at Spartan Stadium .

San Jose began the contest ranked last in MLS scoring with three goals in its first four games. "We broke the ice, as they say," Earthquakes soach Lothar Osiander said. "Our first half was very impressive. We played with a lot of confidence and did very well. I can't complain about the first half."

Earthquakes goalkeeper Joe Cannon recorded his third shutout of the 2000 season, trailing only Wizards' netminder Tony Meola, who leads the league with four clean sheets.

Cerritos put the Earthquakes (2-2-1, 7)into the lead in the 10th minute of play, putting a penalty kick past Burn keeper Matt Jordan. Cerritos netted his second goal of the night in the 36th minute, breaking free of his marker and heading a corner kick home.

Conteh’s two tallies included a scorcher in the 40th minute of play. Cannon launched a long pass to Cerritos, who played the ball forward into the Dallas penalty area. Conteh muscled his way past the Burn defense and unleashed a blast past Jordan into the far side netting for a 4-0 advantage at the break.

Conteh added a second goal on the night in the 70th minute when an Ian Russell cross pulled Jordan off of the goal line. Conteh collected the cross and hammered it past Jordan.

Dallas, which allowed six goals in its first five outings, is 3-3 for nine points.

San Jose Earthquakes 5, Dallas Burn 0

Lineups: San Jose - Joe Cannon, Mauricio Wright, Jim Conrad, Jamie Clark, Ryan Tinsley (Wojtek Krakowiak 75), Richard Mulrooney, Justin Evans, Dario Brose, Ian Russell, Ronald Cerritos, Abdul Thompson Conteh (Esmundo Rodriguez 80). Dallas - Matt Jordan, Brandon Pollard (Jorge Rodriguez 40), Eric Dade, Ricardo Iribarren, Sergi Daniv, Ted Eck (Lazo Alavanja 60), Mark Sante (Aleksey Korol 63), Oscar Pareja, Chad Deering, Ariel Graziani, Jason Kreis

San Jose - Cerritos (penalty kick) 10.
San Jose - Brose (unassisted) 14.
San Jose - Cerritos (Clark, Mulrooney) 36.
San Jose - Conteh (Cerritos, Cannon) 40.
San Jose - Conteh (Russell) 70.

Total shots: San Jose 17 (Cerritos 5, Brose 5), Dallas 11 (Kreis 5). Shots on goal: San Jose 11 (Cerritos 4), Dallas 3 (Graziani 1, Pareja 1, Korol 1). Saves: San Jose - Cannon 3; Dallas - Jordan 6. Fouls: San Jose 17 (Cerritos 4), Dallas 16 (Kreis 4). Offside: San Jose 4. Dallas 2. Corner kicks: San Jose 4, Dallas 6. Yellow card cautions: San Jose - Tinsley 37, Wright 42, Clark 86; Dallas - Deering 70. Possession percentage: San Jose 48, Dallas 52.

Referee: Gerry Corrie. Referee's assistants: Jorge Reyes, Cory Dean. Attendance: 8,871 at Spartan Stadium in San Jose, Calif. Weather: Cold.

New England Revolution 1, Chicago Fire 1 (OT)

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England goalkeeper Jeff Causey preserved a 1-1 tie with he Chicago Fire when he stopped Ante Razov’s penalty kick with 12 minutes to play before 6,737 fans.

Foxboro Stadium saw its second straight overtime game, but the Revolution (1-2-3, 6) could not duplicate last week's golden-goal 2-1 winning effort over D.C. United.

Referee Paul Tamberino awarded the penalty when Dan Calichman handled a cross from the right side by the Fire's Jesse Marsch. Causey lunged to the right side of the goal, knocking away Razov's hard shot

"I had it in my mind that we were not going to lose the game," Causey said. "I got a good jump and made a good save. We've been practicing it all week. I don't think we're pleased with a tie, but the point will help move us up to the top again and keep everyone's confidence going."

Imad Baba was close to becoming an overtime hero once again when his shot from the right side was saved by Fire keeper Zach Thornton into a corner. The Revolution also had a shot by William Sunsing sail over the bar in the first minute of overtime.

Chicago (2-3-1, 7) took the lead in the 59th minute when Dema Kovalenko slotted home a rebound off of Causey. Defender Lubos Kubik made a pinpoint pass from midfield, hitting Chris Armas inside the box. Causey challenged him near the penalty spot and the ball bouncedto the unmarked Kovalenko who netted his second goal.

The Revolution needed nine minutes to pull even at 1 with Ivan McKinley scoring from a scramble in front of the Fore net. A free kick by Mauricio Ramos from the left side trickled through a group of players to McKinley and in the confusion, he was able to poke it past Thornton and just inside the right post. Lineups: New England - Jeff Causey, Ted Chronopoulos, Dan Calichman, Ivan McKinley, Rusty Pierce, John Harkes, Leonel Alvarez, Imad Baba, Mauricio Ramos, Wolde Harris (William Sunsing 56), Johnny Torres (Paul Keegan 81). Chicago - Zach Thornton, Lubos Kubik, Carlos Bocanegra, C.J. Brown, Chris Armas, Jesse Marsch (Evan Whitfield 80), Diego Gutierrez, Peter Nowak, Mike Sorber, Dema Kovalenko (John Wolyniec 75), Ante Razov.

Chicago - Kovalenko (Armas, Kubik) 59.
New England - McKinley (Ramos, Baba) 68.

Total shots: New England 10 (Ramos 4), Chicago 11 (Razov 5). Shots on goal: New England 6 (Ramos 3), Chicago 5 (Kovalenko 2). Saves: New England - Causey 3; Chicago - Thornton 4. Fouls: New England 21 (Baba 4), Chicago 19 (Armas 5). Offside: New England 1, Chicago 1. Corner kicks: New England 6, Chicago 4. Yellow card cautions: New England - Torres 73, Ramos 99; Chicago - Nowak 61, Kubik 68, Whitfield 92. Possession percentage: New England 43, Chicago 57.

Referee: Paul Tamberino. Referee's assistants: Craig Lowry, Richard Eddy. Attendance: 6,737 at Foxboro Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. Weather: Rain.

Los Angeles Galaxy 2, Miami Fusion 0

PASADENA, Calif. -- The Miami Fusion’ scoring drought extended to 405 minutes and the Los Angeles Galaxy (4-0-2, 14) recorded a goal early in each half for a 2-0 victory before 16,885 at the Rose Bowl.

Galaxy defender Greg Vanney converted his second penalty of the season after Clint Mathis was fouled by Jay Heaps in the box to make it 1-0. Heaps had tugged at Mathis, pulling off his jersey.

The Fusion (1-2-3, 6) nearly got on the board in the 22nd minute when a header by Heaps off a corner kick bounced off the post and caromed off the leg of a diving keeper Kevin Hartman, hitting the right post a second time before midfielder Roy Myers cleared away for the Galaxy.

Miami only managed two shots on goal for the game to 10 for L.A.

In the 53rd minute, a header by Mathis was pushed away by Fusion keeper Garth Lagerwey. On the subsequent corner, the ball glanced off midfielder Danny Pena's head and bounced off Miami's Brian Kamler. Pena collected the loose ball and slotted it past Lagerwey for his first goal of the season.

Los Angeles Galaxy 2, Miami Fusion 0

Lineups: Los Angeles - Kevin Hartman, Robin Fraser, Greg Vanney, Paul Caligiuri, Zak Ibsen, Danny Pena, Simon Elliott, Mauricio Cienfuegos, Roy Myers (Marvin Quijano 85), Cobi Jones (Seth George 89), Clint Mathis (Joe Franchino 82). Miami - Garth Lagerwey, Leo Cullen, Francis Okaroh, Tyrone Marshall, Jay Heaps, Pablo Mastroeni, Jim Rooney, Brian Kamler (Eric Wynalda 65), Martin Machon (Diego Serna 46), Welton, Roy Lassiter (Henry Gutierrez 65).

Los Angeles - Vanney (penalty kick) 3.
Los Angeles - Pena (unassisted) 55.

Total shots: Los Angeles 17 (Mathis 6), Miami 14 (Welton 4). Shots on goal: Los Angeles 10 (Mathis 3), Miami 2 (Welton 2). Saves: Los Angeles - Hartman 2; Miami - Lagerwey 7. Fouls: Los Angeles 14 (Cienfuegos 3), Miami 14 (Heaps 3, Rooney 3). Offside: Los Angeles 3, Miami 4. Corner kicks: Los Angeles 11, Miami 5. Yellow card cautions: Los Angeles - Vaney 37; Miami - Mastroeni 6. Possession percentage: Los Angeles 53, Miami 47.

Referee: Tim Weyland. Referee's assistants: Nathan Clement, Seyed Mirhosseini. Attendance: 16,885 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. Weather: Overcast, chilly.

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