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Morales helps Real Salt Lake to win over D.C. United

Apr 12, 2009 - 6:46 AM SANDY, Utah (AP) -- Javier Morales may have been a bit surprised that the ball bounced his way, but the Argentine midfielder for Real Salt Lake knew just what to do when it did.

Javier Morales scored in the 80th minute to lead Real Salt Lake to a 2-1 come-from-behind win over D.C. United on Saturday. The win gave Salt Lake (2-1-0) a two-game winning streak, something it failed to do last season on its way to reaching the Western Conference championship game.

"I reminded the guys again yesterday that this was an opportunity to win two games in a row which is something we didn't do all of last year," said RSL coach Jason Kreis. "I think the guys are feeling very happy about the fact that they won two in a row, and now they want three."

Morales, who notched his first goal of the season on Saturday, got the game-winner after Kyle Beckerman's pass intended for Robbie Findley bounced off the back of his leg and right to Morales just outside of the penalty box. Morales quickly one-timed the ball to the lower corner past diving D.C. goalkeeper Louis Crayton.

"I wasn't waiting for it, I thought Robbie was going to go for it," Morales said through an interpreter. "But it came to me and I went for it."

Luciano Emilo gave D.C. United (1-1-2) a 1-0 lead after scoring on a header following a cross from Chris Pontius in the 38th minute. Emilo, who has scored a goal in three consecutive games, now leads D.C. United with three goals.

Emilo's goal was one of just two shots on goal by D.C. United.

"I don't think we created enough in the final third, but we had enough chances to do what we needed to do to get a result on the road," said D.C. United coach Tom Soehn.

The goal moved Emilo into a tie for the most goals in MLS with Findley, Colorado's Conor Casey and Seattle's Freddy Montero.

That lead didn't last long, though, as Jamison Olave got the equalizer for Salt Lake in the 40th minute with a header of his own. Will Johnson sent the ball in front of the goal, and Olave's header went off Crayton's hands into the goal.

"Looking back it looked like it was right at him and that's something he needs to save," Soehn said.

Crayton, who finished with six saves, kept Salt Lake from taking a lead in the 73rd minute when he saved a header by Yura Movsisyan from seven yards. Salt Lake, which has scored six goals in its last two games, outshot D.C. United 15-7.

"It was another game that I thought we created enough chances," Kreis said. "There were probably a couple, going back, that we could have been more clinical on. But it's still good."

Beckerman nearly gave Salt Lake the lead in the 50th minute, but his shot bounced off the crossbar and away from the goal. Findley was credited with secondary assists on both of RSL's goals.