The Colorado Rapids traveled east to play (likely for the last time) the Columbus Crew. They leave Columbus on the losing side of a 2-1 match that (to find a silver lining) saw the Rapids find the back of the net! Before we get into the recap, we see both a beautiful picture coupled with a sad tweet:
A beautiful capture coupled with a sad tweet ("3rd to last @MLS regular season home game"). #SaveTheCrew https://t.co/DxZeg1lNNx— Rapids Apologia (@RapidsSouthStds) September 22, 2018
The game proved very entertaining.
Tim Howard made a stellar save in the 9th minute.
@TimHowardGK #Rapids96 | #CLBvCOL pic.twitter.com/BjPCf199mY— Colorado Rapids (@ColoradoRapids) September 22, 2018
The Crew opened the scoring with 16th goal of the season by Gyasi Zardes in the 17th minute.
.@gyasinho mailing in his 16th goal of the season! #CrewSC | #CLBvCOL | 1-0 pic.twitter.com/WOaNxNXvMz— Columbus Crew SC (@ColumbusCrewSC) September 22, 2018
And then... it happened. After a 394-minute goal drought by the Rapids, Shkelzen Gashi quick kicks in the 26th minute . . . and it’s a beauty:
ARE YOU KIDDING US? @S_GASHI11 WITH A BLAST! #CLBvCOL https://t.co/dZoh0Lxkix— Major League Soccer (@MLS) September 23, 2018
After this goal, the game became a little chippy and you could see more energy and more commitment and confidence from the Rapids. Yet, the Rapids only had two shots, even after winning possession for the first half.
The second half started with a change: Nana Boateng subbed on in place of Marlon Hairston. Then, of all things, Deklyn Wynne sent off for kneeing the Crew’s Pedro Santos from behind in the behind in what seemed quite soft.
Umm...Declan Wynne was sent off for ...this?— HotSpot Soccer (@HotSpotSoccer) September 23, 2018
1-1 | #CLBvCOL | #CrewSC | #Rapids96 pic.twitter.com/EjiQzuemgM
Considering that referee Allen Chapman had let a number of things go tonight, this seemed abs. I’m sure we will see this on MLS’ Instant Replay and Simon Borg will set it all straight.
Federico Higuain of Columbus takes advantage and scores his fifth goal of the year, putting the Crew up 2-1 after Valenzuela lost control after a Rapids defender closed in and hit it off his shin.
.@ColumbusCrewSC go back in front thanks to Higuaín. #CLBvCOL https://t.co/YpEiqnTkBI— Major League Soccer (@MLS) September 23, 2018
Giles Barnes of the Rapids entered in in the 58th minute immediately after the goal, replacing Shkelzen Gashi. Niki Jackson comes on for Enzo Martinez in the 68th minute—in hopes of providing some offense down a man.
For most of the second half, the Rapids were under siege. Kellyn Acosta of the Rapids provided a tiny bright spot of skill:
@KellynAcosta #Rapids96 | #CLBvCOL pic.twitter.com/h6g7493m8k— Colorado Rapids (@ColoradoRapids) September 23, 2018
After four minutes of stoppage time, the Rapids extend their losing streak to five, and over that span have surrendered 15 goals and scored one.
They travel to the Pacific Northwest to face the Seattle Sounders on Saturday at 2:00 pm at CenturyLink Field.
Five games left until the 2018 campaign is over.
Even sadder, four more games until the Columbus Crew cease to exist.