Bizarro Guevara rescues Metro from the dead
October 14, 2006

New York Kansas City
Guevara 3 van den Bergh
10.14.06 · League

Amado Guevara, dormant for the first half of the season, has woken up. Surely, there were signs of that in recent weeks, but his moment of awakening happened tonight. The captain scored all three goals, and Metro came back from one down to claim the playoff-clinching victory over Kansas City, 3:2. For the second straight year, needing a win in the season's ultimate match, Metro did just that. But for the first time in his four years on the team, it was Guevara who led the club's late-season push.

The game saw the return of now-healthy Todd Dunivant to his left back role, as Seth Stammler moved to defensive midfield; Danny O'Rourke sat. Marvell Wynne came back from his suspension, and rested Youri Djorkaeff started for John Wolyniec.

Kansas City broke through in the 23rd minute. A Stammler turnover and unusual bad defending by Carlos Mendes forced Jon Conway to make a save on a Josh Wolff shot, but Dave van den Bergh easily knocked home the rebound. And all seemed lost.

Enter Guevara. Well, not without help. In the 31st minute, Chris Henderson was taken down inside the left edge of the box, and Amado converted the penalty kick to his usual left to tie the match. Bo Oshoniyi guessed correctly (as if it's not obvious where Amado is going to go on these), but had no chance on the powerful shot.

Of course, a tie was not enough, but a Dunivant cracker that went off the crossbar in injury time as Metro continued to attack was the closest they got in the first half. Fortunately, they would not rue the missed chances. In the 60th minute, Marvell Wynne was tackled in the box, and a rare second penalty was called. Oshoniyi's illegal pre-kick wild jumping did no good, as Guevara beat him again to the still-obvious left side.

Now they had the lead they needed, but Metro continued pressing. And in the 75th minute Guevara hit the nail into the Wiz's coffin with a long low shot that beat the horrible Oshoniyi to the short side. Of course, this is Metro, and nothing can be ever easy, so a Scott Sealy goal seven minutes from time made it once again a one-goal game.

A red card on the Wiz's Nick Garcia for taking down Wolyniec, a bad Stammler giveaway that was saved from danger by Jeff Parke, key clearances by Metro defenders, and harmless Wizard shots marked the nail-biting last moments of the match. And at the end, the only smile wider than on the Metro fans' faces was the one sported by Amado.

Bring on DC!

Lineup: Conway, Dunivant, Mendes, Parke, Wynne, Stammler, Kovalenko, Henderson, Guevara, Djorkaeff, Altidore. Subs: Schopp, Wolyniec, Jolley.

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