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Diallo nears record; his three goals, winner, send Tampa Bay to 4-3
decision over Columbus.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (Wednesday, August 30, 2000) -- Mamadou Diallo continued his assault on Major League Soccer goal record and the Tampa Bay Mutiny needed every tally the striker from Senegal could offer.

The Mutiny erased a two-goal deficit in the second half and won when Diallo completed his hat trick in the 81st minute of a 4-3 triumph over the Columbus Crew before 15,941 at Crew Stadium.

With the decision, the Mutiny (16-11-3, 51 points) moved three points ahead of the Chicago Fire (14-9-6) in Major League Soccer’s Central Divisio, though the Fire has three games remaining and Tampa Bay two. The Mutiny also moved into a scrum atop the overall table, tied for first place with the MetroStars (16-10-3) and one point ahead of the Kansas City Wizards (14-7-8) and the Los Angeles Galaxy (14-8-8).

The Mutiny, which completed a four-game sweep this season of Columbus, visits Kansas City in Saturday. The Crew, which received the first two goals of the season from forward Miles Joseph, saw its postseason hopes dealt a serious blow, falling two points behind the eighth and final playoff position.

With his three tallies, Diallo now has 26 and is one short of Roy Lassiter’s regular-season best of 27.

Diallo completed his second hat trick of the season with nine minutes left, sliding in front of the goal mouth to finish off a low cross from midfielder Eric Quill from deep in the left corner. Diallo outpaced his defender and slid along the ground, tipping the ball past goalkeeper Mark Dougherty to make it 4-3.

Diallo’s second tally sparked the comeback from a deficit that grew to 3-1 in the 52nd minute when John Wilmar Perez’s scored for the Crew (11-13-5, 38 points) with assists from Dante Washington and Mike Duhaney.

Within a minute of that tally, Mutiny midfielder Carlos Valderrama passed a ball down the right flank to Diallo who launched a 15-yard rocket that hit the inside of the far post and went in to cut the margin to 3-2. Valderrama’s 25th assist of the season extended his MLS record,

The Mutiny equalized in the 57th minute when midfielder Kevin Anderson stripped a Crew defender of the ball on the edge of the box. With a quick turn, Anderson rifled a shot that knotted the proceedings at 3-3.

"We made the adjustments well from the first half to the second half," Tampa Bay coach Tim Hankinson said. The Mutiny "showed tremendous resiliency to stick to the battle. It was good we were able to hold on and continue to play."

Joseph opened the scoring in the 14th minute, heading home a perfectly placed Robert Warzycha corner kick from six yards past goalkeeper Scott Garlick.

In the 19th minute, Valderrama generated a Mutiny scoring chance in front of the goal with a well-timed heel pass and Washington, in desperation, grabbed hold of Tampa Bay's Manny Lagos for the foul. Diallo converted the spot kick attempt to even things 1-1.

Midfielder Warzycha and Joseph connected again in the 35th minute to re-take the lead 2-1 in 35th minute. Taking a pass from Duhaney, Warzycha drilled a cross from the left side that penetrated the Mutiny defense and found Joseph in the far side of the box. Joseph nailed his shot for the 2-1 advantage.

"It was a pretty disappointing loss, especially being up 3-1 then (giving up) three unanswered goals," said Crew coach Tom Fitzgerald. "We had plenty of chances to win."

Tampa Bay Mutiny 4, Columbus Crew 3

Lineups: Columbus - Mark Dougherty, Mike Lapper, Miroslaw Rzepa, Mario Gori (Todd Yeagley 46+), Matt Chulis (Jeff Cunningham 79), Miles Joseph (Jason Farrell 66), Robert Warzycha, John Wilmar Perez, Mike Duhaney, Brian West, Dante Washington. Tampa Bay - Scott Garlick, Joseph Addo, Steve Trittschuh, Chad McCarty, Steve Ralston, Kevin Anderson (Amos Magee 92+), Gerard Lagos (John Maessner 71), Ritchie Kotschau, Eric Quill, Carlos Valderrama, Mamadou Diallo.

Columbus - Joseph (Warzycha) 14.
Tampa Bay - Diallo (penalty kick) 20.
Columbus - Joseph (Warzycha, Duhaney) 35.
Columbus - Perez (Washington, Duhaney) 52.
Tampa Bay - Diallo (Valderrama, Anderson) 53.
Tampa Bay - Anderson (unassisted) 57.
Tampa Bay - Diallo (Quill, Kotschau) 81.

Total shots: Columbus 19 (Duhaney 4, Perez 4), Tampa Bay 18 (Diallo 8). Shots on goal: Columbus 6 (Duhaney 2, Joseph 2), Tampa Bay 8 (Diallo 6). Saves: Columbus - Dougherty 4; Tampa Bay - Garlick 3. Fouls: Columbus 11 (five players with 2), Tampa Bay 10 (Quill 3, Anderson 3). Offside: Columbus 2, Tampa Bay 2. Corner kicks: Columbus 4, Tampa Bay 1. Yellow card cautions: Columbus - Joseph 25; Tampa Bay - Anderson 24. Possession percentage: Columbus 54, Tampa Bay 46.

Referee: Gerry Corrie. Referee's assistants: John Spicer-Escalante, Jamil Hamdan. Attendance: 15,941 at Columbus (Ohio) Crew Stadium. Weather: Sunny, warm, 82 degrees, clear.

Wolff and Beasley score two each as Fire clinch playoff berth.

CHICAGO, Ill. – Josh Wolff and DaMarcus Beasley had two goals apiece as Chicago routed Dallas 4-0 Wednesday night at Soldier Field to clinch a berth in the MLS Cup 2000 Playoffs. The Fire (14-9-6, 48pts) also kept pace with Tampa Bay in the tough Central Division, remaining three points out of the top spot.

Wolff opened the scoring 18 minutes into the contest. The 23-year-old began a quick restart after a Dallas foul outside the box. Wolff tapped to midfielder Peter Nowak, who sent a ball down the right wing for Evan Whitfield. Whitfield ran the ball down and drove a perfect cross to his U.S. Olympic teammate in the six-yard box. Wolff beat Dallas 'keeper Matt Jordan for the first goal of the game.

Wolff would strike again in the 59th minute, running unmarked on to a perfect Hristo Stoitchkov through ball into the box. Wolff blasted his seventh goal of the season past Jordan to the lower left of the goal to make it 2-0 Fire.

Wolff had a hand in the third goal, setting up Beasley for his first MLS goal in the 71st minute. Wolff took a pass from midfielder Dema Kovalenko across the top of the box and slid a pass through the Burn defense for Beasley and the 18-year-old easily beat Jordan to make it 3-0.

Beasley would close out the scoring in the 77th minute, running onto a long pass from midfielder Mike Sorber. Beasley then chipped the ball over a charging Jordan for his second career MLS goal.

A makeshift Chicago defense had an impressive performance in the match and limited the Burn to five total shots. With regular defenders Carlos Bocanegra (left ankle sprain), C.J. Brown (left groin strain), Lubos Kubik (left MCL sprain) and Andrew Lewis (left ankle sprain) all out with injuries, the Fire relied on reserves and two A-League call-ups in the back.

Veteran Tom Soehn teamed with Chris Jahr and Tenwya Bonseu to stabilize the defense. Goalkeeper Zach Thornton made five saves to earn his fifth shutout of the season.

Dallas (12-14-4, 40pts) has dropped to the eighth and final playoff spot with just two games remaining.

Chicago Fire 4, Dallas Burn 0

Lineups: Dallas - Matt Jordan, Richard Farrer, Eric Dade, Brandon Pollard, Ted Eck (Ricardo Iribarren 78), Chad Deering, Mark Santel, Bobby Rhine (PaulBroome 64), Lazo Alavanja (Antonio Martinez 46), Jason Kreis, Aleksey Korol. Chicago - Zach Thornton, Chris Jahr, Tenwya Bonseu, Tom Soehn, Justin Evans, Evan Whitfield, DaMarcus Beasley, Dema Kovalenko (John Wolyniec 84), Peter Nowak (Yuri Lavrinenko 81), Hristo Stoitchkov (Mike Sorber 74), Josh Wolff.

Chicago - Wolff (Whitfield, Nowak) 18.
Chicago - Wolff (Stoitchkov, Nowak) 59.
Chicago - Beasley (Wolff, Kovalenko) 71.
Chicago - Beasley (Sorber) 77.

Total shots: Dallas 5 (Kreis 2), Chicago 8 (Wolff 3). Shots on goal: Dallas 5 (Kreis 2), Chicago 6 (Wolff 3). Saves: Dallas - Jordan 2; Chicago - Thornton 5. Fouls: Dallas 24 (Eck 4, Korol 4), Chicago 13 (Soehn 2, Whitfield 2, Evans 2). Offside: Dallas 0, Chicago 2. Corner kicks: Dallas 4, Chicago 3. Yellow card cautions: Dallas - Deering 49; Chicago - Nowak 17. Possession percentage: Dallas 53%, Chicago 47%.

Referee: Andrew Barnes. Referee's assistants: Francisco Sanchez, Cien Asoera. Attendance: 8,256 at Soldier Field. Weather: Humid, hazy, 77 degrees.

Colorado drop Miami 3-1

DENVER, Colorado –- Columbine High School graduate Wes Hart scored the game-winning goal in the second half to lead the Colorado Rapids to a 3-1 victory over the Miami Fusion in a game that carried important playoff implications. The tally by Hart was his second in consecutive starts, the first two of the rookie's MLS career.

The Rapids opened the scoring in the 21st minute. Defender Marcelo Balboa received a ball on the right side of the field and fed David Vaudreuil on the wing. The ex-Miami Fusion player sent a cross into the middle of the box and Paul Bravo met the ball with a diving header from six yards out that found the back of the net.

Miami pressured in attack until it grabbed the equalizer four minutes before the break. Midfielder Martin Machon sent a free kick from the right side into the box.Defender Ivan McKinley headed the ball from the top of the six-yard box and the ball hit the crossbar, bounced off the ground and was grabbed by Rapids 'keeper David Kramer. Referee Alex Prus did not initially signal the goal but after a discussion with his assistant, the ball was judged to have crossed the line.

With the assist on the tying goal, Machon tied the Fusion club record with 14 helpers and also set up a goal in his sixth straight game, tying the Mutiny's Carlos Valderrama for second all-time. The record streak of seven straight games with an assist was set by Machon's teammate Andy Williams in 1998 when he played for the Columbus Crew. The Guatemalan will next join his National Team after the match for its World Cup qualifier against the United States on Sunday at RFK Stadium.

After the break, Colorado pressured the Fusion and hit the post twice through Ross Paule (67th minute) and Chris Martinez (68th minute). The Rapids eventually regained the lead in the 72nd minute as Hart scored another crucial goal for his team. Defender Lance Key sent a cross into the box from the right side and Balboa headed the pass into the middle of the box where Hart pounced on it to score.

Things did not get easier for the Fusion when it lost forward Roy Lassiter to a red card in the 75th minute. The MLS all-time leading scorer was ejected for throwing an elbow at Key. Lassiter, who had scored in five of his previous six matches, will be suspended for the Fusion's weekend match.

The Rapids sealed the victory with a goal which came five minutes from time. Bravo found Martinez with a 40-yard pass down the left side and after reaching the end line, the defender passed the ball into the box and found an unmarked Jorge Dely Valdes. The Panamanian chipped the ball over onrushing goalkeeper Nick Rimando from eight yards out. It was Dely Valdes' seventh goal of the 2000 campaign.

The Colorado Rapids jump into the seventh playoff spot with the victory, winning the head-to-head tiebreaker against the Dallas Burn, who are also at 40 points. The Fusion, at 35 points with three games remaining, now stand five points away from the Burn who occupy the eighth and final playoff spot.

Colorado Rapids 3, Miami Fusion 1

Lineups: Miami - Nick Rimando, Ivan McKinley (Jeff Bilyk 73), Tyrone Marshall, Brian Kamler, Jim Rooney, Jay Heaps, Martin Machon (Welton 80), Henry Gutierrez (Diego Serna 80), Pablo Mastroeni, Andy Williams, Roy Lassiter. Colorado - David Kramer, Marcelo Balboa, Lance Key, Chris Martinez, David Vaudreuil, Jason Bent, Paul Bravo, Ross Paule (Scott Vermillion 91+), Jason Moore (Joey DiGiamarino 65), Jorge Dely Valdes, Wes Hart (Paul Dougherty 88).

Colorado - Bravo (Vaudreuil, Balboa) 21.
Miami - McKinley (Machon) 41.
Colorado - Hart (Balboa, Key) 72.
Colorado - Dely Valdes (Martinez, Bravo) 85.

Total shots: Miami 14 (Williams 3), Colorado 15 (Dely Valdes 4). Shots on goal: Miami 4 (Lassiter 2), Colorado 7 (Dely Valdes 3). Saves: Miami - Rimando 3; Colorado - Kramer 2. Fouls: Miami 13 (Williams 3), Colorado 22 (Vaudreuil 4). Offside: Miami 2, Colorado 7. Corner kicks: Miami 10, Colorado 6. Yellow card cautions: Miami - none; Colorado - Bravo 57, DiGiamarino 77. Red card ejection: Miami - Lassiter 75. Possession percentage: Miami 47%, Colorado 53%.

Referee: Alex Prus. Referee's assistants: Scott McCaslin, Jose Corro. Attendance: 6,598 at Mile High Stadium. Weather: Cloudy.

Morales' goal gives New England a lift in playoff drive.

FOXBORO, MA - Jose Luis Morales scored his first MLS goal and New England picked up an important three points with a 1-0 victory over D.C. United Wednesday night at Foxboro Stadium.

The Revolution (12-11-6, 42 pts) currently stand in sixth place overall in MLS. The top eight teams will qualify for the MLS Cup 2000 playoffs. The Revs have another match with United (7-17-6) on Saturday before closing the regular season against MLS' two best teams, Kansas City and the MetroStars.

Morales' game-winner came in the 59th minute, off a seemingly harmless throw in. After D.C. couldn't control the loose ball at the top of the box, Morales gained possession and rolled a shot from 12 yards out past a diving Mark Simpson. Morales, the first Spaniard to play in MLS, had not scored in his first six games since signing with MLS.

"We really needed these three points," Revolution defender Mauricio Wright said. "This was a tough game, it is not easy to play against so many players we've never seen."

United was playing without a staggering eight starters, as Jeff Agoos, Carlos Llamosa, Eddie Pope, Richie Williams are all with the U.S. National Team. Chris Albright (right hip flexor strain) and Ben Olsen (left ankle sprain) are nursing injuries. Offensive standouts Jaime Moreno (Bolivian National Team), Marco Etcheverry (Bolivian National Team), Raul Diaz Arce (Salvadoran National Team) are also out of action.

Veteran forward A.J. Wood had the best chances for D.C., who clearly had the advantage in play during the first half. Wood's finest opportunity came in the games' dying moments, when the striker broke free into the box on the right side only to shoot wide of the goal.

In an effort to find a late equalizer, D.C. moved Simpson up front to play striker, inserting A-League call up Paul Marcoullier in goal in the 88th minute. Simpson was able to threaten through the air in the New England box, and was active on crosses as D.C. attempted to equalize.

New England goalkeeper Juergen Sommer made six saves to earn his second shutout of the season.

Revolution striker Wolde Harris failed in his attempt to set an MLS record by scoring a goal in his eighth straight game. Harris left tonight's game in the 75th minute and will fly to Jamaica on Thursday to compete with his native country's national team. Harris and Diaz Arce currently share the record for consecutive games with a goal at seven.

New England Rapids 3, D.C. United 0

Lineups: D.C. United - Mark Simpson, Judah Cooks (Sergio Salas 72+), Ray Goodlett (Micah Cooks 82+), Carey Talley, Geoff Aunger, Bobby Convey, Eric Denton, Antonio Otero, David Hayes, Pete Marino (Paul Marcoullier 88+), A.J. Wood. New England - Juergen Sommer, Rusty Pierce, Mauricio Wright, Adam Eyre, Leonel Alvarez, Joe Franchino, Ted Chronopoulos, Imad Baba, John Harkes, Jose Luis Morales (Eric Wynalda 70+), Wolde Harris (Jamar Beasley 76+).

New England - Morales (unassisted) 59.

Total shots: D.C. United 10 (Hayes 3), New England 4 (Morales 2). Shots on goal: D.C. United 6 (Wood 2, Talley 2), New England 2 (Morales 2). Saves: D.C. United - Simpson 1; New England - Sommer 6. Fouls: D.C. United 24 (Talley 6), New England 18 (Pierce 5). Offside: D.C. United 2, New England 7. Corner kicks: D.C. United 5, New England 3. Yellow card cautions: D.C. United - Convey 39, Talley 75+; New England - Pierce 41. Possession percentage: D.C. United 44%, New England 56%.

Referee: Marcel Yonan. Referee's assistants: Peter Kokolski, Thomas Supple. Attendance: 15,489 at Foxboro Stadium. Weather: Clear.

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