CARSON, Calif. — Chivas USA held a two-goal lead with a quarter-hour left in Saturday's match against D.C. United before seeing it evaporate and settling for a 2-2 draw with the Eastern Conference leaders.
Maykel Galindo and Eduardo Lillingston scored in the first half for the Red-and-White but D.C.'s Luciano Emilio and Santino Quaranta scored in the final 15 minutes to help United overcome the deficit.
Galindo appeared in the starting lineup for the first time in more than one year. His last start was in a 2-1 loss to New England on May 11, 2008. Galindo chipped in with a late assist in the home defeat.
From the first minute, Galindo appeared energized and ready to contribute. He tried to run past D.C. defender Dejan Jakovic early on but could not muscle past his sizable opponent.
D.C. provided some early challenges and in the ninth minute defender Jonathan Bornstein cleared an attempt off a set piece that seemed headed toward the corner of the goal.
Midway through the first half, Chivas USA cranked up the heat on their Eastern counterparts. In the 25th minute, Atiba Harris chipped a ball over the top of the United defense. Galindo timed his run perfectly and raced toward the penalty area unmarked.
He forced D.C. 'keeper Louis Crayton to charge off his line and after Crayton dove in vain for the ball, Galindo stepped around him and slipped the ball across the goal line.
Galindo's goal was his first of the season and his first goal since the 2008 MLS season opener. Galindo had 12 goals in 2007 but injuries robbed him of most of last year and the early part of this season.
One minute later, Lillingston threatened to double the lead but his 15-yard shot rattled off the crossbar.
Still, it was Lillingston who eventually put Chivas USA ahead by a pair. Mariano Trujillo crossed the ball to the middle of the penalty area and Crayton knocked the cross away from Justin Braun. Harris collected the ball on the left side of the penalty area and whipped a cross to the far post. Lillingston easily knocked the ball into an open net as Crayton was nowhere near the goal line.
The goal was Lillingston's third of the season, and he took the opportunity to slide head-first in one of the corners.
Chivas USA coach Preki used up his three substitutes early in the second half. He inserted Bojan Stepanovic, Sasha Victorine and Alecko Eskandarian in place of Harris, Galindo and Lillingston.
Chivas USA goalkeeper Zach Thornton came up with a stellar save in the 75th minute that could have seen D.C. snap the club's 399-minute scoreless streak. Luciano Emilio found himself alone with the ball just inside the penalty area. He fired a shot on goal but Thornton dove and made the save.
The streak reached 400 minutes before Emilio broke it. Santino Quaranta held the ball outside the area and sent a ball toward the left post. From the penalty spot, Emilio dove and deflected the ball. It bounced off the left post and into the back of the net.
Quaranta struck again just seven minutes later. Thornton punched the ball out of the area and fell to Quaranta some 25 yards from goal. He ripped a low shot on goal that found its way through Chivas USA's defense and into the back of the net, the first time any team had scored more than a single goal in a game against Chivas.
It was the fourth time this season United had scored the tying or winning goal in the final five minutes of a game to secure a result and the second time in as many weeks, after Chris Pontius (86th) and Jaime Moreno (90th) twice pulled D.C. level in an eventual 3-3 tie with Toronto FC. Seven of United's 17 goals have come in the final 15 minutes.
Chivas USA will now hit the road and will visit Kansas City on May 23 before returning home to play host to Chicago on May 28. D.C. United return home next week to face Real Salt Lake on May 23.
Luis Bueno is a contributor to MLSnet.com.
D.C. United (3-1-6) vs. Chivas USA (7-1-2)
May 16, 2009 -- The Home Depot Center
CHV -- Maykel Galindo 1 (Atiba Harris 1, Eduardo Lillingston 1) 25
CHV -- Eduardo Lillingston 3 (Atiba Harris 2) 43
DC -- Luciano Emilio 5 (Santino Quaranta 5) 77
DC -- Santino Quaranta 1 (unassisted) 85
D.C. United — Louis Crayton, Bryan Namoff, Dejan Jakovic, Marc Burch, Santino Quaranta, Ben Olsen (Andrew Jacobson 7) (Christian Gomez 70), Clyde Simms, Rodney Wallace, Chris Pontius (Fred 46), Jaime Moreno, Luciano Emilio.
Substitutes Not Used: Avery John, Devon McTavish, Ange N'Silu, Josh Wicks
Chivas USA — Zach Thornton, Mariano Trujillo, Carey Talley, Shavar Thomas, Jonathan Bornstein, Atiba Harris (Bojan Stepanovic 56), Jesse Marsch, Paulo Nagamura, Justin Braun, Maykel Galindo (Sasha Victorine 61), Eduardo Lillingston (Alecko Eskandarian 67).
Substitutes Not Used: Chukwudi Chijindu, Jim Curtin, Gerson Mayen, Lance Parker
|Chivas USA||D.C. United|
|total shots:||7 (Eduardo Lillingston 3)||13 (Luciano Emilio 3)|
|shots on goal:||3 (3 tied with 1)||5 (Luciano Emilio 2)|
|fouls:||16 (3 tied with 3)||8 (Luciano Emilio 2, Chris Pontius 2)|
|offsides:||2 (Justin Braun 1, Maykel Galindo 1)||4 (Luciano Emilio 3)|
|corner kicks:||3 (Carey Talley 3)||4 (Jaime Moreno 2, Santino Quaranta 2)|
|saves:||3 (Zach Thornton 3)||1 (Louis Crayton 1)|
DC -- Clyde Simms (caution; Reckless Tackle) 36
CHV -- Bojan Stepanovic (caution; Reckless Foul) 69
DC -- Bryan Namoff (caution; Reckless Tackle) 72
DC -- Dejan Jakovic (caution; Reckless Foul) 84
Referee: Mark Geiger
Referee's Assistants: Anthony Vasoli; Emiliano Monje
4th official: Alex Prus
Time of game: 1:51
Weather: Partly Cloudy -and- 64 degrees
All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial