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Jones nets two, Mathis,Victorine excel as Los Angeles blasts D.C. United 4-0.

By Robert Wagman

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Saturday, March 25, 2000) -- The Los Angeles Galaxy gained a small measure of revenge over D.C, United this afternoon when it soundly defeated last year's Major League Soccer champion 4-0 before 24,147 at RFK Stadium.

The Galaxy played with a three-man front, and its speed and United's defensive disorganization proved to be the difference. L.A. was able to counterattack in numbers with great effect.

"That's what we hoped we could do," said Galaxy coach Sigi Schmid, who side lost 2-0 to United in MLS Cup '99. "I played three up front hoping we could get a forward behind their outside defenders when they push up. That's how we got our first two goals. I had thought about (using three forwards) in the MLS Cup. Maybe I should have done that three months ago."

Striker Cobi Jones contributed two goals and an assist, rookie forward Sasha Victorine added a goal and two assists and the third frontrunner Clint Mathis scored the first goal and assisted the second.

"With three forward up top, it put pressure on their defense," Jones said. "We were going to play a little chicken with them and see how it worked."

Obviously, it worked fine. "With three up front, it allowed us to isolate one-on-one on their defense and we had a little advantage in speed," Mathis said.

Los Angeles opened the scoring in the 11th minute. Midfielder Simon Elliott slotted a long pass down the left side to Victorine. United attempted to catch him in an offside trap, but was too slow and Victorine ran through and got off a shot that was saved by United goalkeeper Tom Presthus. But the ball rebounded to Mathis on the right side and he put it into the open net.

Los Angeles' second goal was a carbon copy of the first. Victorine stripped the ball from United defender Eddie Pope. He slotted it through to a hard charging Mathis running diagonally right to left. Presthus stopped Mathis' hard shot, but could not control the rebound. It can right to Jones who put it away.

D.C.' s star midfielder Marco Etcheverry was inserted in the 56th minute, but he did not stay long. In the 63rd minute, he ran over Mauricio Cienfuegos from behind, and was promptly shown a red card by referee Paul Tamberino.

Etcheverry did not dispute his ejection. "My emotions, they were just too much," an obviously distraught Etcheverry said in the locker room after the game. "I wanted to win too badly. Now I have two weeks to control myself and begin to play the way I should."

Playing a man up opened space for Los Angeles in the late going. In the 89th minute, Jones added a third goal on a header on a cross from Zak Ibsen after outrunning United defender Jeff Agoos to the far post. Then in extra time, Victorine scored his first MLS goal and capped a very impressive debut.

"There is no excuse for the way we played," Pope said. "We just weren't prepared to play. We can't just walk out on the field and turn it on. This was a good wake-up. We have a lot of work to do."

"If we need a wake up call, this was one," United coach Thomas Rongen added. "I have been talking about complacency, and that showed today. As a team we didn't play. I know the players are very embarrassed. We just weren't sharp."

"We have 31 more to play. We'll be OK. They got some measure of revenge today."

Not quite, said Schmid: "Revenge will only come when we can raise the MLS Cup. This was a start. But it's going to be a long season. We'll see how far we have come in October."

Los Angeles Galaxy 4, D.C United 0

Lineups: DC. United - Tom Presthus, Carey Talley (Chris Albright 69), Eddie Pope, Carlos Llamosa, Jeff Agoos, Antonio Otero, Ben Olsen (Bobby Convey 75), John Maessner (Marco Etcheverry 57), Richie Williams, A.J. Wood, Jaime Moreno. Los Angeles - Kevin Hartman, Ezra Hendrickson, Robin Fraser, Greg Vanney, Joe Franchino, Danny Pena, Simon Elliott, Sasha Victorine, Mauricio Cienfuegos, Cobi Jones, Clint Mathis (Zak Ibsen 83)

Los Angeles - Mathis (Victorine) 11.
Los Angeles - Jones (Mathis, Victorine) 59.
Los Angeles - Jones (Ibsen) 89.
Los Angeles - Victorine (Cienfuegos) 92+.

Total shots: D.C. United 9 (Moreno 3), Los Angeles 13 (Victorine 4). Shots on goal: D.C. United 4 (Moreno 2), Los Angeles 9 (Victorine 3). Saves: D.C. United - Prethus 5; Los Angeles - Hartman 4. Fouls: D.C. United 16 (Wood 3, Llamosa 3), Los Angeles 9 (four players with 2). Offside: D.C. United 3, Los Angeles 8. Corner kicks: D.C. United 11, Los Angeles 5. Yellow card caution: D.C. United - Maessner 35. Red card ejection: D.C. United - Etcheverry 64. Possession percentage: D.C. United 60, Los Angeles 40

Referee: Paul Tamberino. Referee's assistants: Craig Lowry, Robert Fereday. Attendance: 24,147 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. Weather: Sunny with occasional rain, 70 degrees.

Columbus Crew 2, San Jose Earthquakes 1 (OT)

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- It didnít take long for Robert Warzycha to redeem himself.

After being called for a hand ball which allowed the San Jose Earthquakes to tie the game on Ronald Cerritosí penalty kick two minutes into injury time, the Columbus midfielder found net in the 10th and final minute of sudden death overtime allowing the Crew to salvage a 2-1 victory before 16,095 Major League Soccer fans at Crew Stadium tonight.

"An amazing finish," said Columbus coach Tom Fitzgerald. "He (Warzycha) probably should have been sent off with the hand ball, but I guess itís poetic justice."

With sudden-death just about over Warzycha, who had been taken down, drilled a 28-yard free kick into the top left corner for the 2-1 final score. Warzycha earned the nickname "The Polish Rifle" for his ability to hit set pieces.

There was no scoring until the 85th minute when the forward Brian West put the Columbus up 1-0, finishing a combination play from Ansil Elcock and Dante Washington. West fired the ball low into the left side, snapping San Jose goalkeeper Joe Cannon's club-record shutout streak at 410 minutes, four minutes shy of the MLS record of 414, set by the MetroStarsí Tony Meola in 1996.

In the waning moments of play, the Earthquakes began applying intense offensive pressure, generating several quality scoring opportunities only to have them denied by the Crew defense. During a goal-mouth scramble in the 91st minute, Warzycha dove to the right post and used his hand to knock away what looked to be a sure goal off the head of Jim Conrad.

"For all the soccer games Iíve been around, I donít think Iíve ever experienced a finish like that," Fitzgerald said. "I think Iíve aged about 40 years tonight, but I enjoyed the finish."

Ronald Cerritos, the Earthquakes' all-time leading scorer, buried the ensuing shot into the lower right hand corner of the net to knot the game at 1.

"At the end of the day, I think Columbus has a great little team," San Jose coach Lothar Osiander said. "Personally, I could do without the overtime, especially after today. That is the game of soccer. Sometimes you score, sometimes you don't. The opponent usually scores when you least expect it, like tonight for instance."

Columbus Crew 2, San Jose Earthquakes 1 (OT)

Lineups: Columbus - Mark Dougherty, Michael Clark, Mike Lapper, Mike Duhaney, John DeBrito, Jeff Cunningham (Brian West 65), Robert Warzycha, John Wilmar Perez, Ansil Elcock, Dante Washington, Brian McBride. San Jose - Joe Cannon, John Doyle, Jim Conrad, Mauricio Wright, Ryan Tinsley (Wojtek Krakowiak 79), Justin Evans, Richard Mulrooney, Ian Russel, Khodadad Azizi, Ronald Cerritos, Abdul Thompson (Esmundo Rodriguez 74).

Columbus - West (Washington, Elcock) 85.
San Jose - Cerritos (penalty kick) 92+
Columbus - Warzycha (unassisted) 100.

Total shots: Columbus 20 (Washington) 5, San Jose 10 (Cerritos 2, Azizi 2, Thompson 2). Shots on goal: Columbus 7 (Washington 4), San Jose 5 (five players with 1). Saves: Columbus - Dougherty 1; San Jose - Cannon 5. Fouls: Columbus 16 (DeBrito 4, Warzycha 4), Columbus 22 (Rodriguez 4). Offside: Columbus 2, San Jose 5. Corner kicks: Columbus 11, San Jose 2. Yellow card cautions: Columbus - DeBrito 15; San Jose - Wright 25. Possession percentage: Columbus 56, San Jose 44.

Referee: Ali Saheli. Referee's assistants: Roger Itaya, Terry Vaughn. Attendance: 16,095 at Columbus (Ohio) Crew Stadium. Weather: Fair, 60 degrees.

Kansas City Wizards 4, Chicago Fire 3

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Preki had a goal and two assists for the rejuvenated Kansas City Wizards who outlasted the Chicago Fire 4-3 before 7,540 at Arrowhead Stadium.

The veteran midfielder, coming off a subpar 1999 season, triggered a Wizards attack that scored just 33 goals in 32 games last season en rout to an 8-24 record. The Wizards are 1-0 after starting 0-14 a year ago.

"It was a good start. We wanted to get out of the shoot in a positive manner," said Kansas City coach Bob Gansler "I thought we did that. We had a great first half. We went helter skelter in the second half, but as a whole we gained a little confidence going into next week."

Danish international Miklos Molnar got Kansas City off strongly in the 14th minute, stealing the ball from Chicago goalkeeper Greg Sutton, who making his second consecutive start in place of injured starter Zach Thornton, slipped at the top of the box with the ball at his feet. Molnar took the ball and fired it into an empty net for 1-0 lead.

"Having a young goalkeeper was part of the loss. He had a tough night," Chicago coach Bob Bradley said. "When the defense doesn't connect with the goalkeeper, that throws everything off. If things don't start off well, they usually get worse. We had some frustrating moments. I hope we can deal with that in the future."

In the 28th minute, Molnar knocked down a high cross at midfield, which ended up on Preki's foot. Preki slotted a perfect pass to a streaking Chris Klein down the right wing. Klein turned and sent a low shot past Sutton inside the far post to put the Wizards up 2-0.

Wizards midfielder Chris Henderson had the goal of the match in the six minutes later. Henderson, being ridden to the ground by a pair of Fire defenders headed a long Preki pass around Sutton and just inside the post to make it 3-0.

"It was my first header goal in MLS," Henderson said. "We took the lead and held onto it. We have a lot of potential in our attack and we proved that with our offense tonight."

Just before halftime, Chicago narrowed its deficit to 3-1 when Ante Razov connected on a header.

Preki served a free kick into the net in the 63rd minute to give the Wizards a 4-1 lead.

Five minutes later, Bulgarian legend Hristo Stoitchkov received a red card for tackling Wizard midfielder Mo Johnston from behind and then hovered over the fallen Johnston for several seconds after the tackle.

Despite playing with 10 men, the Fire nearly caught up. Midfielder Diego Gutierrez slipped into the box and beat two Kansas City defenders to blast a shot into the upper right-hand corner of the goal to make it 4-2 in the 68th minute.

Dema Kovalenko, starting at the attacking midfield position for the suspended Peter Nowak, headed a Lubos Kubik corner kick past Wizards goalkeeper Tony Meola in the 90th minute.

Kansas City Wizards 4, Chicago Fire 3

Lineups: Kansas City - Tony Meola, Peter Vermes, Brandon Prideaux, Nick Garcia, Chris Klein, Chris Henderson, Preki (John Wilson 83), Matt McKeon, Kerry Zavagnin (Alex Bunbury 46), Miklos Molnar (Brian Johnson 80), Mo Johnston. Chicago - Greg Sutton, C.J. Brown, Lubos Kubik, Tom Soehn (DaMarcus Beasley 83), Sam George (Evan Whitfield 71), Hristo Stoitchkov, Diego Gutierrez, Jesse Marsch, Ante Razov, Dema Kovalenko, Junior Agogo (Josh Wolff 57)

Kansas City - Molnar (unassisted) 14.
Kansas City - Klein (Preki) 28.
Kansas City - Henderson (Preki, Zavagnin) 42.
Chicago - Razov (Gutierrez) 45.
Kansas City - Preki (unassisted) 63.
Chicago - Gutierrez (unassisted) 68.
Chicago - Kovalenko (Kubik, Whitfield) 90.

Total shots: Kansas City 16 (Klein 4), Chicago 16 (Razov 5). Shots on goal: Kansas City 9 (McKeon 2, Preki 2, Molnar 2), Chicago 10 (Razov 4). Saves: Kansas City - Meola 7; Chicago - Sutton 4. Fouls: Kansas City 15 (Henderson 4), Chicago 30 (Kovalenko 5). Offside: Kansas City 1, Chicago 1. Corner kicks: Kansas City 6, Chicago 8. Yellow card cautions: Kansas City - Molnar 33, Johnston 46+, McKeon 53; Chicago - Razov 31, Agogo 50, Kovalenko 93+. Red card ejection: Chicago - Stoitchkov 66. Possession percentage: Kansas City 50, Chicago 50.

Referee: Noel Kenny. Referee's assistants: George Vergara, Chip Reed. Attendance: 7,540 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. Weather: Clear, 65 degrees.

Colorado Rapids 1, Dallas Burn 0

DALLAS -- Marcelo Balboa's 80th-minute header proved to be the difference as the Colorado Rapids downed the Dallas Burn 1-0 before 13,119 in the rain at the Cotton Bowl.

The Rapids suffered the loss of rookie goalkeeper Adin Brown in the match, but managed to shut out the Dallas.

Balboa, the Rapids' captain and defensive leader, put Colorado on the board when he redirected a 14-yard header into the upper left of the goal off an Anders Limpar set piece, beating Burn goalkeeper Matt Jordan. The goal was Balboa's 16th of his MLS career, and his third game-winner.

"I just shook my defender and Anders hit a great ball," Balboa said. "I was aiming for that corner, but was I trying to hit it just off the corner of the post and the crossbar. Yeah, sure I was."

The Rapids suffered yet another injury to a key player in the 49th minute, when a mid-air collision between Brown and Burn midfielder Ted Eck resulted in Brown leaving the field to receive medical attention. Backup keeper David Kramer entered the net for the Rapids, making one save.

The Rapids generated seven shots on goal during the game, forcing five saves from Jordan. Jason Kreis created most of the offense for the Burn, firing all three of Dallas' shots on goal and half of the Burn's eight total shots during the game.

"It is not possible to say enough about the character of this club after a game like this," said Colorado coach Glenn Myernick. "The boys fought all night, through a tough Dallas team, through injuries and through the elements, and came up with a huge win."

Colorado Rapids 1, Dallas Burn 0

Lineups: Dallas - Matt Jordan, Eric Dade, Richard Farrer, Ricardo Iribarren, Jorge Rodriguez, Mark Santel (Paul Broome 78), Ted Eck (Antonio Martinez 85), Chad Deering, Oscar Pareja (Bobby Rhine 68), Jason Kreis, Ariel Graziani. Colorado - Adin Brown (David Kramer 51), Lance Key, Scott Vermillion, Chris Martinez, Marcelo Balboa, Jason Moore, Kevin Anderson (Tahj Jakins 33), Paul Bravo (Anders Limpar 33), Paul Dougherty, Henry Zambrano (Jeff DiMaria 85), Jorge Dely Valdes.

Colorado - Balboa (Limpar) 80.

Total shots: Dallas 8 (Kreis 4), Colorado 8 (Limpar 2, Dely Valdes 2, Balboa 2), Shots on goal: Dallas 3 (Kreis 3), Colorado 7 (Limpar 2, Balboa 2). Saves: Dallas - Jordan 5; Colorado - Brown 1, Kramer 1. Fouls: Dallas 19 (Kreis 4), Colorado 16 (Jakins 3). Offside: Dallas 4, Colorado 4. Corner kicks: Dallas 7, Colorado 2. Yellow card cautions: Dallas - Exk 49; Colorado - Moore 47, Balboa 63, Key 85. Possession percentage: Dallas 53, Colorado 47. Referee: Kevin Stott. Referee's assistants: Sergio Vega, Misail Tsapos. Attendance: 13,119 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas. Weather: Overcast, 75 degrees, showers.

Tampa Bay Mutiny 1, New England Revolution 0

TAMPA, Fla. - Raul Diaz Arce's second-half goal propelled the Tampa Bay Mutiny to a hard-earned 1-0 victory over the New England Revolution before 14,811 at Raymond James Stadium.

Diaz Arce connected on his third goal of the season to put the Mutiny up 1-0 in the 51st minute and the veteran striker now trails Roy Lassiter by one for the all-time MLS lead in goals. He tallied off a nice setup from mifielder Steve Ralston and defender Dominic Kinnear.

Ralston dribbled through midfield and lofted a pass to the top of the box where Diaz Arce launched a long header that caught New England goalkeeper Jeff Causey off his line.

Tampa Bay could not muster nearly as much offense as last week, when it routed Columbus 5-1, but the Mutiny is off to the second best start in club history. Tampa Bay began the 1997 campaign with a 3-0 record.

New England had trouble putting its shots on target, landing just eight of 19 shots on goal. Striker Eduardo Hurtado was the main culprit, sending all five of his shots wide of the target. Tampa Bay managed onle eight total shots, placing three on frame.

Revolution playmaker Mauricio Ramos played against his former club for the first time. Ramos was sent from Tampa Bay to New England in the offseason for an allocation. The Mutiny used that allocation to obtain Senegal striker Mamadou Diallo, who could make his debut for the club next week.

Tampa Bay Mutiny 1, New England Revolution 0

Lineups: Tampa Bay - Scott Garlick, Chad McCarty, Joseph Addo, Ritchie Kotschau, Steve Trittschuh, Dominic Kinnear, Josh Keller, Carlos Valderrama, Manuel Lagos (Eric Quill 11, Kalin Bankov 74), Raul Diaz Arce, Steve Ralston. New England - Jeff Causey, Rusty Pierce, Ted Chronopoulos (Mike Burns 45), Ivan McKinley (William Sunsing 70), Brian Dunseth, John Harkes, Imad Baba, Leonel Alvarez, Mauricio Ramos, Wolde Harris, Eduardo Hurtado

Tampa Bay - Diaz Arce (Ralston, Kinnear) 51.

Total shots: Tampa Bay 8 (Kotschau 2, Diaz Arce 2), New England 19 (Hurtado 5). Shots on goal: Tampa Bay : 3 (Keller 1, McCarty 1, Diaz Arce 1), New England 8 (Baba 2, Hurtado 2, Ramos 2). Saves: Tampa Bay - Garlick 8; New England - Causey 2. Fouls: Tampa Bay 14 (Diaz Arce 3), New England 9 (McKinley 2, Pierce 2, Harkes 2). Offside:Tampa Bay 4, New England 7. Corner kicks Tampa Bay 2, New England 6. Yellow card cautions: New England - McKinley 29, Ramos 45. Possession percentage: Tampa Bay 44, New England 56.

Referee: Andrew Barnes. Referee's assistants: Nathan Clement, Robbie Mann. Attendance: 14,811 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla. Weather: Clear, 80 degrees breezy.

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