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Larentowicz erupts, Rapids net point

October 9, 2010 | 5:08 pm No comments
By Shaun Schafer

An offensive explosion from Jeff Larentowitcz (Larentowicz?!) made the difference as Colorado tied FC Dallas and inched closer to the playoffs on Saturday.

The Ginger Ninja was the offensive spark for a team that started hot, fell asleep, and then dominated for long stretches in the second half in Frisco, Texas. Larentowicz provided both goals in the 2-2 tie.

With the result, the Rapids move to 11-8-9 (42 points) and could start printing playoff tickets. Dallas moved to 12-2-14 (50 points) and set a league record for games without losing at 19, 10-0-9 over that stretch.

It was a tough point for a team that played well in the second half after falling behind 2-1.

Larentowicz brought his squad back with his second goal of the day as he latched on to a corner kick from Jamie Smith on the right side. Dario Sala got a hand on the header, but couldn’t keep it out of the next in the 52nd minute. 

Larentowicz’s first goal was everything the Rapids could hope for. It came in the 14th minute on a breakout from a Dallas free kick at the other end. Pablo Mastroeni started the play off the block, and it finished with Smith sending the ball to Omar Cummings, who fed it back to Larentowicz. The finishing shot went low to the near post past Sala.

Milton Rodriguez, whose shot into the wall led to the Rapids first goal, made amends in the 27th minute. Heath Pearce sent a cross in that Ativa Harris headed toward the far post. The shot ricocheted to the feet of Rodriguez, who cracked the ball to the far post.

David Ferreira put Dallas ahead in the 37th minute. Marvin Chavez got the ball on a quick restart, flicked it to Ferreira, who ran between Drew Moor and Danny Earls for a one-on-one with Matt Pickens. Ferreira finished to the far post.

Ultimately, neither team could untie the knot, and the squads split the points.

Ouch: One of the big concerns was the early substitution of Anthony Wallace. He came off in the 22nd minute for Earls with a groin strain. Dallas scored both first half goals down the left side.

No Wings: Watching the 4-5-1 or 4-4-1-1 that Gary Smith put on the field Saturday, it became increasingly clear that the three forwards on the field did not include a wing.

Macoumba Kandji acted as if getting wide caused an allergic reaction. As poorly as he played on his few trips out there, you could see why. Cummings was game, but he never seemed to find his place. Casey, well, Casey’s a striker in the classic English mold. He needs to be in the middle of the field.

Simply put, this formation is not working. Smith seemed to acknowledge as much in the 52nd minute when Brian Mullan came on for Kandji and the team moved to a 4-4-2.

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