The Kansas City Wizards ended their four-match winless streak in style, a three-goal blitz in nine minutes midway through the first half sending the Columbus Crew to a fourth consecutive loss in a 4-0 victory on Saturday evening at Columbus Crew Stadium.
Alex Zotinca, Josh Wolff and Davy Arnaud all found the back of the net as the Wizards continued their solid attacking output in the 2005 season, Chris Klein playing provider on three goals, but they also held firm in the back, recording a second shutout on the season. Wolff netted the game's fourth game late in the match.
Led by striker Cornell Glen, the Crew came out firing on all cylinders. He headed a Simon Elliott cross goalward and sent a shot from 30 yards over the bar in the opening minutes of the match. He then again created trouble in the 13th minute, but struck a left-footed shot just wide of the left post from 20 yards.
The Wizards struck back in a warning sign as fine passing from the Kansas City midfield allowed Zotinca to go in alone against Columbus 'keeper Jon Busch. Through a fine effort, Busch was able to wrestle the ball away from Wizards midfielder.
However, Zotinca would not being denied moments later. Klein beat Stephen Herdsman on the flank and cut back a low cross to the Romanian who slotted the ball back off the near post and into the goal to give the Wizards the lead in the 17th minute.
The Wizards strike pair would quickly add to the total. Arnaud fed a ball to Wolff, and with a step on Chad Marshall, the U.S. international beat Busch with a shot to the upper left corner of the goal in the 23rd minute.
Just three minutes later, Wolff would reciprocate the nice setup work, as Arnaud redirected his cross past Busch at the near post.
The Wizards continue their assault on Busch's goal in the 39th minute. Nick Garcia made a good overlapping run on the right side and provided service to Zotinca, who just missed getting his second goal of the evening. The Crew finally made a foray towards the Wizards goal in the 42nd minute. Domenic Mediate shrugged off tackles by several defenders, but his attempt on goal was unable to beat former Crew netminder Bo Oshoniyi.
In an effort to cut into the large halftime deficit, Greg Andrulis brought on Ante Razov at the break for Herdsman, which brought to an end the one-half experiment of a 4-4-2 formation for the Crew. It had some immediate effect as Razov made a perfect service to Glen, but the Trinidad and Tobago international hit the ball well over the crossbar from the penalty spot.
The Crew dominated possession in the second half as the Wizards were content to defend in numbers and rely on the counterattack. Despite the large advantage in possession, the home team was unable to make many serious threats on Oshoniyi's goal.
In the 87th minute on the counter, Wolff had a breakaway against Busch, but dribbled the ball too wide as he passed the 'keeper. However, Wolff recovered the ball near the endline and turned back towards the middle of the field where he fired a quick shot that deflected off Chris Wingert's foot and caught the side netting to top off an impressive road victory for Kansas City.
The Crew remain at home to play Real Salt Lake next Saturday, while the Wizards travel to D.C. United on the same evening.
MLSnet.com Man of the Match: Chris Klein (Kansas City Wizards)
John Kuhn is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.
Kansas City Wizards (1-1-3) vs. Columbus Crew (2-4-0)
May 14, 2005 -- Columbus Crew Stadium
KC -- Alex Zotinca 1 (Chris Klein 2, Josh Wolff 3) 17
KC -- Josh Wolff 3 (Davy Arnaud 1, Chris Klein 3) 23
KC -- Davy Arnaud 1 (Josh Wolff 4, Chris Klein 4) 26
KC -- Josh Wolff 4 (unassisted) 87
Kansas City Wizards -- Bo Oshoniyi, Nick Garcia, Jimmy Conrad, Shavar Thomas, Jose Burciaga Jr., Chris Klein, Sasha Victorine, Kerry Zavagnin, Alex Zotinca (Brian Roberts 80), Josh Wolff (Scott Sealy 90), Davy Arnaud (Jack Jewsbury 88).
Substitutes Not Used: Will Hesmer, Preki.
TOTAL SHOTS: 11 (Davy Arnaud 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 7 (Davy Arnaud 3); FOULS: 14 (Davy Arnaud 4); OFFSIDES: 2 (Chris Klein 1, Josh Wolff 1); CORNER KICKS: 1 (Jose Burciaga Jr. 1); SAVES: 2 (Bo Oshoniyi 2)
Columbus Crew -- Jon Busch, Frankie Hejduk, Stephen Herdsman (Ante Razov 46), Chad Marshall, Chris Wingert, Mario Rodriguez, Simon Elliott, Kyle Martino, Domenic Mediate, Edson Buddle (Manny Lagos 72), Cornell Glen (Knox Cameron 63).
Substitutes Not Used: Bill Gaudette, Ryan Kelly, Mark Schulte, Marcus Storey, Jamal Sutton, Danny Szetela.
TOTAL SHOTS: 17 (Cornell Glen 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 2 (Chad Marshall 1, Domenic Mediate 1); FOULS: 13 (Frankie Hejduk 3); OFFSIDES: 3 (3 tied with 1); CORNER KICKS: 7 (Simon Elliott 5); SAVES: 3 (Jon Busch 3)
CLB -- Kyle Martino (caution; Tackle from Behind) 29
KC -- Jose Burciaga Jr. (caution; Deliberate Handball) 67
CLB -- Simon Elliott (caution; Tackle from Behind) 77
Referee: Lee Suckel
Referee's Assistants: -Thomas Supple; Bill Dittmar
4th Official: Kevin Terry
All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial.