Recap: Crew vs. Rapids
The Crew's Brian Carroll fired his PK over the crossbar in the bottom of the fifth round of a shootout to send the Colorado Rapids into the Eastern Conference final against the San Jose Earthquakes on Oct. 13.
All the PK shooters had scored prior to Carroll's miss. Colorado goalkeeper Matt Pickens made feigned a move before Carroll shot, and the effort sailed high over the bar.
The Crew took a 2-0 lead in Game 2 and a 2-1 edge on total goals in the series before Conor Casey’s equalizer in the 84th minute ensured a 30-minute overtime.
Columbus trailed in the series after losing 1-0 at Colorado on Oct. 28 but rebounded at home on goals by Eddie Gaven in the 22nd minute and Robbie Rogers in the 70th before Casey silenced the crowd.
Colorado had a chance in the 18th minute of the extra session after Crew defender Shaun Francis fell to the ground with an injury to create an odd-man rush. With space to work, Macoumba Kandji struck a low ball from 15 yards that Andy Gruenebaum squeezed between his legs.
It was a different story earlier for Casey’s goal. He finished a cross from the right corner by Omar Cummings.
Cummings beat Francis and was able to loft the ball deep into the box to Casey, who got the inside position on Eric Brunner for a right-footed strike.
Two unlikely flank players combined on the second Crew goal as Emmanuel Ekpo’s pass from beyond midfield found Rogers on the right side.
He shirked defender Anthony Wallace at the top of the penalty area then used his left foot to slot the ball past goalkeeper Matt Pickens from 12 yards.
Rogers had his second goal in 22 games and the Crew looked to be in control of the series after a hot start to the match.
It was a tale of two first halves with the Crew in total control through the well-earned goal they needed to tie the aggregate at 1-1 thanks to Gaven’s redirect from inside the goal box.
Then the Rapids had the better play the rest of the half but could not crack goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum.
The Crew had half a dozen chances that could have been put away before Gaven's goal that began with Andres Mendoza knocking the ball from the endline back to Brian Carroll on the left flank.
Carroll sent a cross to the back post for Chad Marshall, but it bounced once and Guillermo Barros Schelotto headed it across the goalmouth. The ball landed on Gaven’s right-foot for the half volley.
The Crew were at full throttle from the opening whistle and had three brilliant attempts stymied in the first eight minutes. Schelotto, the object of much scrutiny after being subbed out in the 68th minute of Game 1, was at the heart of the attack.
He took advantage of a glaring Pablo Mastroeni turnover and sent Gaven through on the right side. Gaven dribbled inside the box and his strike beat Pickens but found the left post and caromed back into play in the 4th minute.
Schelotto then took a try of his own in the 8th minute with a free kick from 45 yards that an unscreened Pickens was able to gather.
Pickens made another save in the 18th by parrying Ekpo’s 20-yarder over the crossbar. Incredibly, the Crew had another great chance in the 21st minute only to see Rogers’ shot cleared off the line by Marvell Wynne.
Colorado Rapids 1 at Columbus Crew 2 (regulation and overtime)
(After overtime – series was tied 2-2 on aggregate goals)
Columbus Crew Stadium
CLB -- Eddie Gaven 1 (Guillermo Barros Schelotto 1) 22
CLB -- Robbie Rogers 1 (Emmanuel Ekpo 1) 70
COL -- Conor Casey 1 (Omar Cummings 2) 84
Penalty Kicks Summary (After 120 minutes):
COL -- Conor Casey, Goal
CLB -- Guillermo Barros Schelotto, Goal
COL -- Macoumba Kandji, Goal
CLB -- Jason Garey, Goal
COL -- Jeff Larentowicz, Goal
CLB -- Eddie Gaven, Goal
COL -- Claudio Lopez, Goal
CLB -- Eric Brunner, Goal
COL -- Jamie Smith, Goal
CLB -- Brian Carroll, High
Colorado Rapids -- Matt Pickens, Kosuke Kimura (Claudio Lopez 82), Marvell Wynne, Drew Moor, Anthony Wallace (Julien Baudet 75), Brian Mullan (Macoumba Kandji 76), Pablo Mastroeni, Jeff Larentowicz, Jamie Smith, Conor Casey, Omar Cummings.
Substitutes Not Used: Quincy Amarikwa, Scott Palguta, Wells Thompson, Ian Joyce.
Columbus Crew -- Andy Gruenebaum, Frankie Hejduk, Eric Brunner, Chad Marshall, Shaun Francis, Emmanuel Ekpo (Kevin Burns 81), Brian Carroll, Eddie Gaven, Robbie Rogers (Steven Lenhart 90), Guillermo Barros Schelotto, Andres Mendoza (Jason Garey 65).
Substitutes Not Used: Andy Iro, Adam Moffat, Gino Padula, Chase Harrison.
CLB -- Guillermo Barros Schelotto (caution; Reckless Tackle) 31
COL -- Brian Mullan (caution; Reckless Foul) 38
COL -- Conor Casey (caution; Dissent) 48
CLB -- Emmanuel Ekpo (caution; Reckless Tackle) 52
CLB -- Brian Carroll (caution; Tactical Foul) 56
CLB -- Shaun Francis (caution; Reckless Tackle) 64
CLB -- Robbie Rogers (caution; Shirt Removal) 70
Referee: Michael Kennedy
Referee's Assistants: -Chris Strickland; Philippe Briere
4th Official: Terry Vaughn
Time of Game: 2:39