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Josh Wolff's four goal night lead Chicago over Dallas 5-1.

NAPERVILLE, Ill. (Wednesday, August 9, 2000) -- Josh Wolff had four goals and an assist, including two tallies in the first nine minutes to stoke the Chicago Fire to a 5-1 romp over the Dallas Burn before a standing room only crowd of 7,096 at Cardinal Stadium.

Josh Wolff
Josh Wolff
Wolff became the first Fire player ever to record 4 goals in a game (earlier this year Ante Razov recorded the Fire's 1st hat-trick). Dallas pulled one back after it was 4-0, but Chicago added a late one and easily handled the Dallas Burn.

"We played with a lot of confidence today," Wolff said. "I think we established a style of play that was successful for us. Right from the start we were able put that kind of effort out and we got an early goal, which was very important because it forced their team to come out. And when teams are forced to come out against us, I don't think they're going to stay with us for 90 minutes. Tonight we were able to finish them off. "

The Fire opened in a flurry scoring on their first opportunity with wonderful setup by Razov for Wolff to slot home and adding to their advantage eight minutes later, this time Wolff setting up Kovalenko. As the half progressed, play began to settle down and Dallas began to crawl back into the game creating more scoring chances with Graziani missing a clear cut scoring opportunity.

Chicago exploded in the second half with three Josh Wolff goals and ensured themselves of a semifinal birth against the winner of the Los Angeles vs. San Jose cup-tie. Wolff's four goals on the night breaks the team record of three set by Ante Razov on May 6 at Miami. Hristo Stoitchkov continued his recovery from a groin tear, coming on in the second half for Razov and assisting on Wolff's final two goals.

Bob Bradley, Chicago's head coach, said, "A very good performance by our team tonight. Our players came out with a good attitude, we pushed hard and that pushed the tempo of the game. It was obviously nice to get some early goals, and it was obviously nice for Josh. He has had a tough stretch where he has played well but has not been able to finish. The fans were tremendous tonight, a great crowd here in the suburbs, they showed tremendous passion."

Chicago Galaxy (MLS) 2, Dallas Earthquakes (MLS) 0

Lineups: Dallas - Matt Jordan (Johann Noetzel 67), Eric Dade, Jorge Rodriguez, Brandon Pollard, Bobby Rhine, Antonio Martinez (Chad Deering 28), Lazo Alavanja, Mark Santel, Oscar Pareja, Jason Kreis (Esmundo Rodriquez 63), Ariel Graziani (Alexei Korol 57). Chicago - Zach Thornton (Chris Snitko 80), C.J. Brown (Tom Soehn 73), Andrew Lewis, Carlos Bocanegra, Chris Armas, Jesse Marsch, Mike Sorber (Sam George 77), DaMarcus Beasley, Dema Kovalenko, Josh Wolff, Ante Razov (Hristo Stoitchkov 69).

Chicago - Wolff (Razov) 2.
Chicago - Kovalenko (Wolff) 9.
Chicago - Wolff (unassisted) 47.
Chicago - Wolff (Stoitchkov) 72.
Dallas - Deering (Rhine) 82.
Chicago - Wolff (Stoitchkov) 87.

Total shots: Dallas 8, Chicago 17. Shots on goal: Dallas 2, Chicago 7. Saves: Dallas 5, Chicago 3. Dallas 22, Chicago 16. Offside: Dallas 7, Chicago 4. Corner kicks: Dallas 1, Chicago 3. Yellow card cautions: Dallas - Alavanja 15, Pollard 25, Graziani 53; Chicago - Razov 16. Red card ejection: Dallas - Dade 75.

Referee: n/a. Referee's assistants: n/a. Attendance: 7,096 at Cardinal Stadium in Naperville, Ill. Weather: n/a.

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