MLS recap for Week Nine
the only East club to fall over the weekend.
The only Western Conference club to win were also the holders of the league's best overall record at the one-third pole, the Los Angeles Galaxy defeating the Dallas Burn 4-1 at home to open a six-point lead in their division.
At Soldier Field on Saturday, a controversial goal from Nate Jaqua was all the Fire needed to defeat the Colorado Rapids 1-0 and end their three-match winless run. Chicago goalkeeper Henry Ring was credited with his league-leading fifth shutout.
Jaqua's 66th-minute drive hit the underside of the crossbar and bounced straight down before coming back over the line into the six-yard box. Referee Ricardo Valenzuela, however, was unmoved by the protests of Rapids goalkeeper Joe Cannon and the goal was allowed to stand.
The following night, the MetroStars finally broke down a stubborn Wizards defense, John Wolyniec diving to head home the rebound of an Eddie Gaven shot that came back off the face of the crossbar 17 minutes from time.
The victory snapped a five-match winless run for Metro after two victories to begin the season, while the Wizards are still winless and goalless away from home in three matches this season.
In Columbus, the Crew continued their resurgence -- and their home dominance of the Earthquakes -- with a 1-0 victory. Jeff Cunningham's goal against the run of play was the only goal of the game, neatly heading home from an Eric Denton cross from the left touchline in the 69th minute.
The Crew also ended the Earthquakes' four-match unbeaten streak while extending their own to five, winning for the third match in a row, and again sent the Earthquakes away from Columbus without a point. The Crew have won the last 11 matches at home between the two teams, dating back to the 1996 season, an MLS record for home winning streak against one team.
At Gillette Stadium, Taylor Twellman endured a rough night, missing a second-half penalty kick before being injured as D.C. United took advantage of an early own goal to record a 1-0 victory against the New England Revolution, who are now five points adrift of United for last place in the East.
Revolution defender Brian Kamler turned a low cross into his own goal after just five minutes to give his former club the game's only goal, then in the second half, Twellman saw his goal-scoring drought when he pushed his penalty wide though United rookie goalkeeper Troy Perkins guessed correctly with his dive.
Things went from bad to worse for the New England striker later in the match when he was taken from the field with a strained right hamstring, having now gone 561 minutes without scoring. His status will be re-evaluated by the team's medical staff within the next two days.
At The Home Depot Center, Jovan Kirovski scored a pair of goals as the Galaxy maintained their best overall record in the league with a 4-1 victory against the Burn, who fell to their fourth consecutive loss after starting the season with a four-game unbeaten streak.
Sasha Victorine headed home a Cobi Jones cross from close range when the Galaxy took advantage of a defensive error after just nine minutes, then after the break, the Galaxy doubled their lead through an own goal after Steve Jolley headed a free kick past 'keeper Scott Garlick when battling Victorine in the area (65).
Ronnie O'Brien pulled a goal back for the Burn six minutes later when he finished off a long run through the heart of the Galaxy defense, hooking a shot home from inside the area while falling, but just a minute later the home side restored their margin to two when Kirovski headed home a Marcelo Saragosa cross that the luckless Jolley again helped over the line.
Kirovski then secured his double, converting a penalty kick four minutes deep into second-half stoppage time for his fifth goal of the campaign, tied for second in the league with teammate Alejandro Moreno and San Jose's Brian Ching, one behind still-injured Galaxy marksman Carlos Ruiz.
This story was not subject to the aproval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.