With his one-time shoe-string shot to give the team a 1-0 lead, I could have sworn I was watching Benny Olsen. Or maybe Benny Feilhaber. But definitely somebody named Benny. Nope, it was Joe Vide. That goal really made me wish I was listening to Dave Johnson and Thomas Rongen do the broadcast. I could just hear Rongen saying his usual "Shoelaces... Thanks for coming..." line.
Anyway, up until around the 80th minute, this felt like it was going to be a very underwhelming victory. We looked noticeably mediocre, playing against a middling Western Conference team whose coach had just resigned. DC dominated possession for the most part, but could only generate one goal, and that one was off of a rather spectacular atypical shot. We rightfully pulled away at the end, but it wasn't quite the victory I was hoping for. Once again, it was Gallardo's presence that was missing.
1. Obviously it was the goal by Joe Vide that allowed us to knock the ball around more in the second half. The other two goals would have been much harder to come by if it wasn't for Vide's.
2. Our two stalwarts Brian Namoff and Clyde Simms had their usual awesome performances. I'm thinking that the final 5 minutes after Simms was subbed out was actually the first time all season that either of these guys have come off the field.
3. Playing once again in a CAM role, Santino Quaranta's goal was a beaut. Not often in the MLS do you see someone score from the top corner of the box like that.
4. I'm not likely to take back everything bad I've said about him quite yet, but it was cool to see Quavas Kirk score his first MLS goal in his first minute on the field.
1. How about our new assist machine Luciano Emilio? I don't think we're going to be comparing Looch to John Stockton anytime soon, but I liked seeing him share the wealth with his teammates.
1. It's hard for me to put a defender down here after a clean sheet match, but I was once again a bit disappointed with Gonzalo Martinez. His passes are sometimes too lazy and his dribbling is sometimes too wild. If we ever have Peralta, Burch, and McTavish available all at once, I don't think Martinez should be an automatic starter anymore.
So it wasn't quite a domination as the score suggests, but it was a victory nonetheless. Now let's see if, for the first time in a while, DC can string together multiple wins. They've got the potential to do it, with matches coming up against New York at home and San Jose on the road, with the Open Cup final against Charleston mixed in. Hopefully the team can build on this game and gain some confidence, because I'm not sure the kind of lackluster first half that we had will be enough against an energized USL opponent.