Colorado Rapids 1, Vancouver Whitecaps 0 | MLS Match Recap

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. – The Colorado Rapids took home with them the poor weather and lightning delays from last week’s postponed game against Sporting Kansas City, but they also were able to bring back the success that the team has only seen on the road this season, earning their first home win of 2015 with Saturday night’s 1-0 victory over the visiting Vancouver Whitecaps.

The game, which also saw Colorado win for the first time at Dick's Sporting Goods Park since July 25, 2014, opened as a back-and-forth affair between the sides. Colorado controlled 56.8 percent of the game’s possession, but Vancouver produced the lion’s share of the game’s offensive chances with six shots to the Rapids’ three.

Things got heated in the 24th minute when Kianz Froese collided with Clint Irwin in the Rapids box. Irwin came up with the save, but Froese was shown yellow for diving.

Both sides produced quality chances to break the deadlock in first-half stoppage time. Vancouver forward Octavio Rivero hit a header off the post in the second minute of the added time, nearly giving the Whitecaps the lead. On the ensuing offensive sequence by Colorado, Dillon Powers returned the favor, driving a shot just beyond the post

Second half play resumed after a 20 minute lighting delay and Vancouver continued its attack, with Froese sending a shot wide in the 48th minute.

Colorado would strike in the 51st minute, with Powers linking up with Gabriel Torres once more. A cheeky back heel flick by Torres landed for Lucas Pittinari, who tucked the shot inside the near post for the 1-0 lead and his first MLS goal.

The lead opened the door for the Rapids to debut their newest Designated Player. As anticipated, Kevin Doyle made his first appearance for the side since joining the club in training earlier in the week, subbing in for Torres in the 63rd minute.

Vancouver continued to chase the equalizer, with Kekuta Manneh driving a shot well over the mark in the 65th minute. Five minutes later, Manneh was relieved by fresh legs when Darren Mattocks subbed in for the Whitecaps.

But the Rapids continued to put the Whitecaps’ defense on its heels. Pittinari nearly found his second goal in the 71st minute, flicking a header just over the bar.

The Rapids’ other newly signed striker, Luis Solignac, nearly found a goal in the 75th minute by whipping a shot to the far post that was deflected by the fingertips of Whitecaps goalkeeper David Ousted.

The Whitecaps appeared to finally find the equalizer in the 82nd minute, when Pedro Morales sent in a free kick into Colorado’s net. But the play was nullified by the referee’s whistle and It was Vancouver’s last quality chance at earning a result.

Colorado now takes to the road on a short week, playing the Seattle Sounders on Wednesday night at CenturyLink Field. Vancouver will also take a flight back to the Pacific Northwest, returning to BC Place next Saturday to host Real Salt Lake.

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