COMMERCE CITY, Colo. – So close, yet so far. In the Colorado Rapids’ 1-0 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps on Wednesday night, they managed 17 shots, six of which were on goal – yet the ball simply didn’t find the twine for the home team.
It was, as striker Omar Cummings told MLSsoccer.com, one of those nights. The Rapids created several significant opportunities – including several fine stops by Whitecaps goalkeeper Joe Cannon – but in the end, converting on those chances proved to be the biggest obstacle of all for Colorado.
“It was that final touch that can change the story of the game,” Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja said. “And then we couldn’t [do it].”
At the end of the first half, striker Conor Casey appeared to have a sure goal as he stood in front of an empty net, but after settling an incoming cross, the ball appeared to ride up Casey’s thigh and bounce harmlessly away from him.
Jamie Smith’s 67th-minute shot just missed wide, and headers by Edu and Tony Cascio almost went into the back of the net. But ultimately it wasn’t meant to be for the Rapids, who lost for the third time in the past four games.
“[It’s] like one of those nights where it’s, ‘Is it going to happen?’ And it didn’t,” Cummings said. “Looking at the last even five minutes of the game, seeing some chances, half chances. [But] it looks like it’s going to be one of those nights where they got their chances to put away and we didn’t convert, so let’s move past this one and head to the next game.”
But despite the frustration of the evening, Pareja told his team to keep their heads held high.
“They did all that they had to do,” he said. “They moved the ball, they worked hard, they got the ball back quick. But all these positive things, I have to let them know that they did it. Because sometimes you come and say, ‘You know what, we lost.’
“But as negative as it is, and losing at home against Vancouver, I’m going to tell you they did a lot of great things today and positive things. They have to keep building on that.”
Chris Bianchi covers the Colorado Rapids for MLSsoccer.com.
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