Photo by ISIPhotos.com
By DAN KARELL
Chivas USA haven’t lost this year when Erick “Cubo” Torres has scored.
With Chivas USA up a man late in the match, Torres arrived like a thief in the night at the back post and calmly headed home the game-winning-goal, before Chivas USA finished off the Vancouver Whitecaps, 3-1, to stun the crowd at BC Place on Saturday evening.
It was Chivas USA’s fourth consecutive win, lifting them into seventh place in the Western Conference, just one point behind the LA Galaxy.
The Whitecaps, who have struggled to score goals from set pieces this season, found their opener from an unlikely source.
Defender Carlyle Mitchell worked some space from his mark, Chivas USA’s Eriq Zavaleta, and easily headed past Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan Kennedy in the 27th minute to give the Whitecaps the lead. The goal was Carlyle Mitchell’s first goal in MLS. However, it was the only goal-scoring of the day for the hosts.
On a similar corner kick just two minutes into the second half, Chivas USA tied the score. Mauro Rosales beautifully curled in a corner kick and it was met by the head of Agustin Pelletieri.
The Whitecaps attempted to bring new life to their attack thanks to the substitutions from head coach Carl Robinson, who brought in Darren Mattocks and Nigel Reo-Coker.
The pair were on the end of a few chances, combining well with Pedro Morales and Erik Hurtado but that was all for naught when Jordan Harvey earned a straight red card in the 69th minute. Harvey went into a challenge with Osvaldo Minda and slid into the Ecuadorian with both studs exposed, forcing the referee to reach straight to the back pocket.
Reo-Coker missed a great opportunity in the box a few minutes after but in the 81st minute, Chivas USA went ahead for good. Marco Delgado stole the ball in midfield and played a nice one-two with Rosales. Delgado got the return pass on the right sideline and sent in a beautiful ball to the back post, which had Whitecaps goalkeeper David Ousted off his line and allowed Torres to run onto the ball and score.
The goal was Torres’ fifth goal in as many games.
With the Whitecaps pushing everything forward towards the end and Ousted up for a corner kick, Chivas USA were able to clear and Leandro Barrerra scored from 40-yards out on a roller into an empty net to make it a 3-1 scoreline.
Here are the game highlights: