By IAN HOLLIDAY
The Colorado Rapids took another step toward their first playoff birth since 2006 Saturday night with a comfortable 3-0 win over the New England Revolution. Omar Cummings and Conor Casey scored in the first half, and Wells Thompson added an insurance goal seven minutes from time.
With the win, the Rapids improve to 10-7-7 (37 points) and maintain their 6-point cushion in the playoff race over Toronto FC. The loss leaves the Revolution all but eliminated.
The first half was an almost-perfect mirror image of the Revolution's last match against Chivas USA. For the second straight week, the Revs gave up one goal inside of 10 minutes and another 10 minutes from halftime. And for the second straight week, they looked totally inept in the process.
Cummings struck first for Colorado in the 5th minute. Jamie Smith sent a perfectly weighted cross past a sliding Kevin Alston and into the path of Cummings, who calmly put a first-time shot past goalkeeper Matt Reis.
The Rapids dominated the first half, creating several good chances and limiting the Revs to just one total shot (which Kevin Alston sent 10 yards over the bar) and none on goal.
Casey and Cummings combined in the 35th minute to extend the Rapids' lead.The play started with Smith again, as the Scotsman received a ball laid off from Casey and found Cummings at the top of the arc. The Jamaican played the ball back to Casey in the box, and the latter sent a left-footed shot under Reis at the near post.
The goal was Casey's 10th of the season and tied him for the Rapids' all-time club record of 39. He nearly achieved the honor 8 minutes earlier, when his shot from distance hit the left post.
Overall, the second half was better for the Revolution. They were able to maintain more possession and create chances, but as they pressed to get back into the game, they left a lot of space at the back.
Reis made a terrific save in the 65th minute to keep the Revolution in the game. Casey redirected a Cummings cross on frame from just 8 yards out, but the goalkeeper fully extended his body to push the ball wide.
The ensuing corner kick led to a Revolution counterattack that saw Marko Perovic get the ball behind the Rapids' defense, but the linesman ruled the Serb offside.
The chances kept coming for Colorado, and Wells Thompson finally iced the game in the 83rd minute with a solid individual effort. He cut into the box from the left flank and showed good skill in creating space for himself in front of Cory Gibbs before finishing at the near post.
Next up for the Rapids is a tough road match against Real Salt Lake next Saturday. The Revolution continue their current road trip on Wednesday at FC Dallas.
Here are the highlights from the match:
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