COMMERCE CITY, CO - APRIL 21: Omar Cummings #14 of the Colorado Rapids reacts after missing a shot against the Los Angeles Galaxy at Dick's Sporting Goods Park on April 21, 2012 in Commerce City, Colorado. The Galaxy defeated the Rapids 2-1. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Here's the good news: The Rapids scored two goals tonight while playing the LA Galaxy!
The good news is a bit less exciting to hear when you add in that one of them went in the wrong net and one of them didn't come from a 90th minute penalty, but at this point with the team's offense looking as bad as it had the past couple of games, we've been kind of forced to take what we can get. In front of the second largest crowd in the history of Dick's Sporting Goods Park though (over 19000 people!) you'd think the fans deserved better than what they got.
David Beckham did actually start the game for LA even after a laughable last second back spasms excuse almost kept him out of the Starting XI right before game time, but the big line up stories were Conor Casey missing the game with strep throat and Kamani Hill starting in the midfield for Martin Rivero, still suffering a quad injury he got in Seattle.
Remember the Conor Casey part, it will be important later.
The game started off rather brightly with both teams putting in good moments, though the chances on goal were few even as both teams took their chances. Tony Cascio had the best chance of the early goings, whiffing on a great cross from Omar Cummings in the box on the still slick pitch.
The Galaxy got on the board in the 21st minute when David Beckham put in a decent free kick that was snatched up by Mike Magee and whipped toward the net. He got a lot of help though, as his shot would probably have gone wide if not for a gang of three Rapids players desperately leaping towards it to put it over their own bar. Unfortunately, Marvel Wynne's head caught it the wrong way and slammed it in.
Now, up until that point the Rapids had been controlling the game in just about every facet except for the scoreboard. The past few weeks have been proof positive that if you can't score, pretty much nothing else you do matters. Once again, the Rapids were out passing, out possessing and out pretty much everything-ing the Galaxy but that goal shifted the momentum completely in LA's favor.
They got another one in the 33rd minute when Landon Donovan took a Robbie Keane cross into the box with Kosuke Kimura near but not completely marking him. His shot was right at Matt Pickens, but somehow Pickens found a way to miss it. That ended the scoring in the first half and the Rapids went into the break 2-0 down.
Oscar Pareja's half time adjustments looked good at first in the second half, with the Rapids putting in hard work to continue their possession domination and good solid passing game. It finally paid off in the 63rd minute when Omar Cummings took the ball to the edge of the 18 and let loose a spectacular shot that snuck into the top corner.
Even better, Colorado started putting in all the work they could after that to search for the equalizer.
It was all for naught though. Around the 80th minute, LA realized that referee Ramon Hernandez was having a terrible game and decided that diving all over the place to waste time would be the best way to get the game over sooner rather than later. Hilariously, most of the more egregious dives - Juninho and DeLaGarza, I'm looking at you! - were coming on Omar Cummings touches. Because when I think 'strong fouler' I think Omar Cummings.
Perhaps the ref got sick of it though, since he gave the Rapids a fairly weak penalty kick as substitute Andre Akpan was flanked by two guys to the ground in the box right as the clock hit 90.
That's where the problems started. Remember how I brought up Conor Casey earlier? For anyone who was wondering when Conor would have 'saved the offense', you need look no further than this penalty. With Conor out, the decision for who to take it was probably between Omar Cummings, Jeff Larentowicz and... well, those two. Conor simply doesn't miss penalties, it's almost his specialty. Omar on the other hand, blew the Rapids only chance at stealing a point from this game when he weakly stutter-stepped to the ball and shot a slow one right at Josh Saunders, who was diving the right way before Omar even touched it.
Frustrating, to say the least... but a typical game for these Rapids this year.
MAN OF THE MATCH: Matt Pickens. Other than the second goal, he was strong in net all day long, made four big saves to keep the game in the Rapids corner the whole time and was great off his line to stop a lot of chances on forward runs.
GOAT OF THE MATCH: Omar Cummings. It makes absolutely no difference that he scored that first goal if he doesn't score that second one. Such an uninspiring penalty.