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Vancouver Whitecaps 3, Colorado Rapids 3 | 2016 MLS Match Recap

 

Erik Hurtado's goal at the end of stoppage time rescued a point for the desperate, 10-man Vancouver Whitecaps, delivering a stunning 3-3 draw on Saturday night against the visiting Colorado Rapids at BC Place.

A brilliant free kick goal by Colorado's Shkelzen Gashi in the 75th minute had appeared to dash the hopes of the Whitecaps, who entered the contest with already slim playoff hopes. Gashi, who had scored earlier on a penalty kick, put the Rapids up 3-2 with a left-footed rocket that bent around the Vancouver wall and finished in the top left corner of the goal.

But in the last of the three minutes of added time, Vancouver's Jordan Harvey sent a long, hopeful ball into the Colorado box, and after what appeared to be a couple of deflections, the ball bounced off Hurtado and went in to give the home team a precious point.

With their playoff hopes dangling by a thread, Vancouver included 15-year-old attacker Alphonso Davies in their starting lineup, making Davies, a Homegrown Player who signed with the club in July, the second-youngest player ever to start an MLS game.

Colorado, however, jumped out to an early lead, taking advantage of a questionable gamble by Vancouver goalkeeper David Ousted, who charged off his line to stop the Rapids' Marlon Hairston sprinting on goal. But the ball wound up on the feet of Hairston's teammate, Dominique Badji, who pumped it into the net for a 1-0 lead.

Vancouver knotted the score in the 51st minute, when rugged 6-foot-5 center back Kendall Waston headed home a corner kick from Christian Bolanos for his third goal of the season. But barely five minutes later, Waston was sent off after fouling Badji in the box and being shown a red card. Gashi calmly buried the ensuing penalty kick to put Colorado back in front, 2-1, in the 57th minute.

But despite being down a man, the Whitecaps tied the game in the 70th minute, when Pedro Morales was left alone in the box to bang in a feed from Giles Barnes.

Box Score

  • 8’ – COL – Dominique Badji (Marlon Hairston, Sam Cronin)
  • 51’ – VAN – Kendall Waston (Christian Bolanos)
  • 57' – COL – Shkelzen Gashi (penalty kick)
  • 70' – VAN – Pedro Morales (Giles Barnes, Erik Hurtado)
  • 75' – COL – Shkelzen Gashi
  • 90+3' – VAN – Erik Hurtado
  • Full box score
  • Stats 
  • Highlights 

Three Things

1. COMEBACK 'CAPSThree times they fell behind and three times they came back. It may ultimately be too late for Vancouver to pull a rabbit out of a hat and make the Audi 2016 MLS Cup Playoffs, but on this night, every time it seemed Colorado was in control and comfortable, the Whitecaps struck. Maybe it's too little too late, but it was a fun game for the BC Place fans to watch.

2. YOUTH IS SERVED: Fifteen-year-old Alphonso Davies made his first MLS start, becoming the second-youngest player to start a game in the league (Freddy Adu was 14 when he started for D.C. United in 2004). He played the full 90 minutes, took two shots, and hardly looked out of place. He showed he has a future in the league.

3. NO WIN, BUT MAYBE A GOAL OF THE WEEK? Shkelzen Gashi looked like he'd won the match for the Rapids with his second goal of the game, a perfect, bending free kick that rocketed its way into the upper 90 to put Colorado up 3-2 with 15 minutes left. It wasn't worth three points, but it was definitely worth a second and even third replay purely for the aesthetics. 

Next Up

  • VAN: Wednesday vs. Central FC (CONCACAF Champions League, 10 pm ET)
  • COL: Saturday, Oct. 1 vs. Portland Timbers (9 pm ET; MLS LIVE)
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