Streaks end, continue as Metro ties Salt Lake 3:3
May 6, 2007

Salt Lake New York
Mathis 2
05.05.07 · League

A disturbingly familiar scene played out Saturday night at Rice-Eccles Stadium: Metro dominated the majority of the game, built a seemingly insurmountable lead, and with help from the officiating crew, squandered it in the dying moments to suspect Real Salt Lake squad. Behind two wonder goals from Chris Klein and Chris Brown and a suspect penalty kick converted by Jeff Cunningham, Real Salt Lake ended Metro's record-setting streak for consecutive minutes to start the season without a goal allowed and stretched the winless streak in Utah to three.

With Clint Mathis returning from his one-game ban, Metro reverted to a 4-4-2 with Seth Stammler taking Dema Kovalenko's position alongside Claudio Reyna in midfield. Jozy Altidore started up top once again alongside Mathis, and gave former Metro captain Eddie Pope, who was assigned to man-mark him, all he could handle in the first half.

Metro heaped the pressure on early, with Mathis missing wide on a first time shot off of Dave van den Bergh's feed in the eighth minute. Mathis would make up for the miss four minutes later when he played a ball to van den Bergh, who lobbed a long pass over the entire Salt Lake defense into the path of an onrushing Dane Richards, who fought off defender Daniel Torres and chipped the ball past an indecisive Chris Seitz for his first professional goal.

With Metro in control of the game, Mathis was the next to strike as van den Bergh, having stolen the ball from Medhi Ballouchy, led a three-man counterattack. Altidore made a diagonal run as both strikers ran toward goal, distracting Pope long enough for van den Bergh to play a perfect through ball past the Salt Lake defender. Mathis calmly slotted the ball past Seitz to make it a two-goal lead.

After the break, Metro picked up where they left off, attacking Salt Lake's defense relentlessly. An excellent Mathis corner kick to the far post met the head of Altidore, who nodded it wide of goal. However, the game changed first in the 61st minute when Klein took a hopeful shot from 25 yards out, burying it in the upper left side of the net. Then, shortly before the 70th minute, Ronald Waterreus was injured after making contact with Jeff Cunningham. The Dutchman was relieved for the second time this season by Jon Conway.

Richards was relieved by Dema Kovalenko in the 80th minute, who would help to provide Metro's third goal of the match. Crossing from the right, Kovalenko found an unmarked Mathis in the box who headed home for his second goal of the night.

Up two goals with seven minutes to go, that should have been the end of Salt Lake's challenge, but referee Ricardo Salazar had something else in mind. Jeff Parke, who spent most of the night fending off Cunningham, was called for a non-foul on Carey Talley in box in the 90th minute. Cunningham converted the resulting penalty kick, reducing the deficit to a single goal.

The stage was now set for another memorable Utah collapse. In the 93rd minute, Chris Brown ran onto a Freddy Adu ball in the right side of the penalty box, turned the clueless Todd Dunivant around and fired into the top left corner, banking the shot off the inside post and into the net. Although referee Ricardo Salazar did not blow to whistle to allow the play to start on the throw-in that led to the goal, the goal stood.

Lineup: Waterreus, Dunivant, Mendes, Parke, Freeman, Stammler, Reyna, van den Bergh, Richards, Mathis, Altidore. Subs: Conway, Kovalenko, Wolyniec.

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