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Chicago holds off 10-man Sporting, 3-2

Mar 26, 2011 - 10:51 PM Bridgeview, IL (Sports Network) - Diego Chaves, Gaston Puerari and Marco Pappa scored, and the Chicago Fire edged 10-man Sporting Kansas City, 3-2, at Toyota Park on Saturday in Major League Soccer.

Chaves scored the opener from the penalty spot after Sporting's Omar Bravo was sent off in the 32nd minute and Puerari doubled the Fire's in the 40th. Pappa added the third goal in the 60th for the Fire (1-0-1).

Matt Besler and Teal Bunbury scored in the second half for K.C. (1-1-0), which played well over the final hour despite losing Bravo midway through the first half.

Chicago, which tied 10-man FC Dallas 1-1 last weekend, was the beneficiary of another red card this week, as Bravo was sent off after pulling down Puerari, who was the last man, from behind.

Chaves drove the penalty kick to the right side with K.C. goalie Jimmy Nielsen going the opposite way for his second goal in as many games to open the year. Puerari doubled the lead five minutes before half after Michael Videira played a perfect pass through two defenders.

Besler cut the deficit in half for K.C. six minutes after half when he hooked a loose ball into the net from close range, but Pappa restored Chicago's two- goal cushion with a nice individual effort at the hour mark.

Pappa drove through four defenders and then fired into the bottom left, giving Nielsen no chance. Bunbury pulled a goal back in the 72nd, but Kansas City was not able to find the equalizer over the final 20 minutes.

Chicago will try to extend its season-opening unbeaten streak April 9 when it visits Seattle Sounders FC. Sporting will try to rebound without Bravo against expansion Vancouver Whitecaps FC on April 2.