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Around the League: Recap of the weekend's games

The Quake's continue to win, the Sounders got themselves back in the win column, and the worst team in the West won back to back games. Let's get to it.

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Chicago Fire 3, NY Red Bulls 2

The Eastern Conference is so bad that the Chicago Fire, who last week had the worst point total in the league, and had accumulated fewer points than games played, now have a shot at the playoffs, thanks to a 3-2 home win over the New York Red Bulls. Sacha Kljestan's PK goal in the 10th gave the Red Bulls the lead, but a pair of goals from Kennedy Igboananike and Patrick Nyarko in the 22nd and 41st tilted the match back in Chicago's favor. New York regrouped at halftime and in the 49th minute Ronald Zubar clipped in an equalizer, but in the end Kennedy Igboananike was the big hero for Chicago, and his game-winner in the 73rd drew the Fire to within 2 points of the playoffs.

Colorado Rapids 2, Houston Dynamo 1

The Dynamo hit a new low on the road Wednesday night in Colorado, losing 2-1 to the worst team in the West via a late heartbreaker by Kevin Doyle. After blowing a 2 goal lead in their last match in Portland, Houston never led in this game, and looked thoroughly out of sorts. The rest of the scoring in this forgettable contest came from pair of penalty kicks, one taken by Vicente Sanchez to give Colorado the lead in the 20th, and the other an equalizer by Brad Davis in the 37th.

San Jose Earthquakes 1, LA Galaxy 0

The Quakes just continue to win and win and win. 18 minutes into this contest, Shea Salinas headed in a ball deflected by the keeper past the near post, and that would be all San Jose needed to take the W. The Earthquakes have now won 5 straight, are shooting up the table, and are one of the hottest teams in the league.

Columbus Crew 2, New York City FC 1

NYCFC is still perched right on the edge of the playoff picture, but there would be no points for them taken away from Saturday's match. NYCFC midfielder Andrew Jacobson netted his first goal of the season here, an equalizer in the 29th minute after an early strike by Federico Higuain in the 10th. That 1-1 score-line would stand until the 83rd, when Higuain served up a game winner for Justin Meram.

Toronto FC 2, Montreal Impact 1

Montreal slid below the red line in the East Saturday after a 2-1 loss to TFC. The Impact's only goal came in garbage time, a 74th minute strike by Dominic Oduro and His Amazing Technicolor Mohawk. TFC rode goals by USMNT regulars Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore, in the 35th and 55th minutes.

New England Revolution 1, Philadelphia Union 0

The Union continued to flounder Saturday, with a weak 1-0 performance against the New England Revolution. The only goal of the match came in the 51st minute, when Diego Fagundez received a long pass, dribbled and juked it through a group of defenders before slipping in a long far post strike past the keeper. The Union still have a snowball's chance in the criminally weak East, but New England is now solidly above the red line.

Chicago Fire 1, Orlando City SC 1

The Chicago Fire finally got back in the win column earlier in the week, but were unable to keep it rolling against the Lions on Saturday, and they have only themselves to blame. Chicago took the lead in the 30th minute with a near-post sweeping strike that slipped past the keeper's fingers. If the Fire had simply been able to hang on to that lead everything would have been gravy, but 7 minutes later Fire defender Eric Gehrig accidently headed the ball back into his own goal when he leaped up to try to beat Cyle Larin on a header. Such a disappointing way to lose.

Colorado Rapids 2, Sporting Kansas City 1

The Rapids doubled up on their win total this week by taking another 3 points from a Western Conference rival. Sporting's Dom Dwyer got on the board first in the 47th minute, but a pair of goals from Maynor Figueroa and Kevin Doyle sealed the deal for the Rapids. The result doesn't really change much in the West; the Rapids are still solidly below and Sporting is still solidly above the red line.

FC Dallas 2, Real Salt Lake 0

FC Dallas solidified their position in the table with a strong win over the now worst team in the West. RSL conceded a penalty in the box in the 51st that Tesho Akindele converted to take a 1-0 lead, and Fabian Castillo added a nail in the coffin in the 79th. FC Dallas has jumped back up to 3rd in the conference, and RSL has slid all the way to last place after Colorado's 6-point week.

Houston Dynamo 2, Vancouver Whitecaps 0

The Dynamo stayed alive in the playoff hunt Saturday night with a refreshing 2-0 win over the 2nd place Vancouver Whitecaps. One of the goals, from Raul Rodriguez, came very late in the 87th, when the Whitecaps had been reduced to 9 men, but the game winner was scored in the 34th by Ricardo Clark, on an assist from Cubo Torres, making his first start for Houston. If he continues to start going forward, maybe he and Bruin can make enough magic up top for the Dynamo to sneak above the red line.

Seattle Sounders 2, Portland Timbers 1

Seattle Sounders sent their Cascadia Cup rivals home with 0 points Sunday, getting the W that's been awfully elusive for them of late. Portland's only goal came when the match had already been decided, in the 58th minute, courtesy of Jack Jewsbury. Seattle took the lead just 6 minutes into the match,

New York Red Bulls 3, DC United 0

The Red Bulls trounced DC 3-0 to pull up to the 2nd position in the East, just two points behind DC United. New York's first score came in the 33rd minute courtesy of Lloyd Sam, but then it was time for Bradley Wright-Phillips to go nuts with a brace in the 42nd and 64th minutes, his 12th and 13th of the season.

What all of this means for the Dynamo

The Dynamo were able to take 3 points out of two matches the past 7 days. Not a terrible week, but it's going to take more than that to get above the red line. Right now, Houston sits 3 points back of San Jose and Seattle, who are tied on points but with a better goal differential for Seattle. If Houston can string some wins together, they could overtake those two, but only if they lose the next couple of matches. Now, it's a pretty safe bet that that is exactly what Seattle will do, but San Jose just can't seem to lose. So it'll be a pretty tough road for the Dynamo.
Seattle's win doesn't do Houston any favors. If they had lost to the Timbers, Houston would be tied on them on points with a chance to pull ahead.
San Jose's win is a real bummer because with a loss to the Galaxy, they'd be tied with the Dynamo on points.
The Rapids' defeat of Sporting doesn't really affect the Dynamo. Sporting are way out of reach, and if Colorado passes Houston, then we don't deserve to make the playoffs.