CARSON, Calif. – The Erick “Cubo” Torres show rolled on Saturday night.
The rising star scored a dramatic bicycle kick goal in stoppage time to propel Chivas USA to a thrilling 1-0 victory against the Montreal Impact at StubHub Center. He leaped into the stands after netting the game-winner, his fourth goal in the last four games, giving the Rojiblancos their third consecutive win with flair.
It was the youngster’s 12th goal of the year, putting him in second place among the league's leaders.
The touch of brilliance capped a rather tepid showing from both sides in a matchup between two of the lowest scoring teams in the league. And for most of the night it unraveled how many expected it would, with Chivas USA and the Impact battling without much to show for it.
The Rojiblancos extended their league unbeaten streak to four games, while goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, who sprinted to Torres and bear-hugged him after the final whistle, notched his third consecutive shutout. Chivas USA have not allowed a goal in 323 consecutive minutes of league play.
The Impact, who came into the game with an Eastern Conference-worst 16 goals scored, were blanked for the sixth time this year.
Before Torres’ heroics in the fourth minute of stoppage time, Eric Avila had a golden opportunity to give the home side a victory, but his long-range shot in the 79th minute went wide. Avila also threatened in the 63rd minute, but Troy Perkins punched away the strike. Montreal nearly broke through in the 65th minute when Andrés Romero tried his luck from distance, but Kennedy dropped to his knees to gobble up the attempt.
The Impact displayed much better buildup than the Goats early on, controlling 58 percent of the possession in the first half. Montreal had a golden chance to go in front in the 20th minute after Chivas USA right back Donny Toia whiffed on a clearance attempt near goal, but Felipe Martins misfired over the crossbar.
US national team goalkeeper Tim Howard and former teammates Stuart Holden and Steve Cherundolo were among the crowd.
Chivas USA will travel to face the Vancouver Whitecaps on July 12 for the first of three consecutive matches away from home. Montreal return to Stade Saputo to play Sporting KC on the same date.
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Erick Torres||His bicycle-kick winner pretty much says it all, but he was also the best player on the field|
|2||Bobby Burling||A goal stole the show, but it was the defense that stood out for 90+ minutes|
|3||Felipe Martins||On a punchless Montreal attack, he stood out on the night|