nothing has been easy -- and it is an invitation to the playoffs, and that counts for a lot at this point."
On the importance of getting the early goal based on the Dallas loss earlier in the day:
"We didn't know that result early on, and we didn't want to know it. We wanted to just play our game and not change things in relation to other games. So it's disappointing that we didn't get three, but the one gets us in and that's really what the season is all about at this point, qualifying for the playoffs."
On reaching the team's preseason goal of 40 points:
"I guess that was a good guess back then. But like I said, it's been a hard season, and now the guys get the invitation. What we do with the next two weeks as far as building the team spirit, keeping our game sharp and playing better then we did tonight is our main focus from this point in, but it is surely not a time to relax."
COLORADO RAPIDS DEFENDER RITCHIE KOTSCHAU
On getting into the playoffs with a draw:
"We are happy to be there, obviously, that is one thing off our chests. But the way we finished off he game and the way things happened, it left us kind of somber, but we just have to work hard these next two weeks, come out against Columbus playing hard, playing well so we can enter the playoffs on a good note."
On how his playoff experience will help the rest of the Rapids squad:
"Two weeks is a long time preparing, but in essence we have been preparing for six or seven months now for this. So if we aren't ready now, then something is wrong, but we will get there, we'll get back on our best form and we'll move straight on through."
COLORADO RAPIDS CAPTAIN PABLO MASTROENI
On the team's attitude toward getting into the playoffs with a draw:
"It's tough, in the first half we played really well and I think we had the opportunity to go up two, but we fought hard today. We need to clean some things up, possession being one of them and we just need to look forward to playing Columbus, and playing a good game to go into the playoffs with a little steam. It's a little bit of a somber feeling, but the teams in the league are so tight that it's a great feeling to finally clinch."
On being suspended and for the Rapids regular season finale against Columbus:
"I think everything works out for a reason, and it was a pretty questionable call. But, it's good that it is out of the way and I would rather be ready for playoffs. It also gives the opportunity for some of the younger guys to get some good minutes before the playoffs, where we will need all of 24 of our players."
COLORADO RAPIDS FORWARD JEAN-PHILIPPE PEGUERO
On scoring on his comeback from injury:
"I always feel great when I score goals, but it would have been better if we had won the game. But we're in the playoffs and that is the important thing for the team."
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES