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Guevara lifts Toronto FC to third straight win

Apr 26, 2008 - 11:22 PM TORONTO (Ticker) -- Toronto FC has one of the best home-field advantages in Major League Soccer - and coach John Carver loves it.

Amado Guevara scored twice Saturday, leading Toronto FC to a 2-0 victory over the Kansas City Wizards.

Greg Sutton stopped three shots for Toronto, which has won three straight for the first time in franchise history.

Despite the Raptors hosting the Magic in the first round of the NBA's Eastern Conference playoffs, the always boisterous Toronto FC supporters showed up in full force.

"I love he way they are reacting," Carver said. "Especially when they chant, 'This is our House.' I love that they view this place as a fortress. Because it is ours."

"It's like I said last year, it's one of the hardest places to play in MLS," Kansas City coach Curt Onalfo said. "Between the surface and the crowd, it's a hard, hard place to play."

Guevara scored in the 56th minute, and added a free kick in the 77th minute. Guevara's first goal came after he gathered a loose ball in the box and fired a right-footed shot past goalkeeper Kevin Hartman.

"Overall, I feel that this team has made me feel very welcome and the fans are wonderful," Guevara said. "And no matter how well we play, the fans of Toronto always deserve more because they are worth it."

Hartman stopped two shots for Kansas City, which has split the first two games on a six-game road trip.

The fans saw a flurry of close calls until Guevara netted the first goal early in the second half. After free kick from Carl Robinson was blocked, Marvell Wynne dribbled in on the left side of the box and lost the ball to a pair of defenders.

However, Guevara came from the right side and picked up the loose ball and sent a right-footed kick past Hartman.

The jubilant fans waved flags and tossed confetti onto the field in celebration. Guevara gave them more reason to celebrate in the 77th minute as he bent a beautiful free kick past Hartman into the left corner of the net for a 2-0 lead.

The 31-year-old Guevara scored his first goals since his MVP season of 2006, and became the first player in franchise history to score twice in a game.

"All I can say is that he played at a world-class level," Carver said. "Playing against a player like (Claudio) Lopez, who is obviously world class is great. To watch someone like Guevara outplay him is a delight as a coach."

"It's a blessing that I was able to score not one, but two free kicks," Guevara said. "But in the end, it's points for FC, and even if I didn't score, I would feel the same way for my teammates."

It was a pretty evenly played first half, with both teams managing six shots.

Kansas City outshot Toronto, 11-9, but could not muster a legitimate scoring chance.

"I'm very pleased all around," Carver said. "Not to sound negative but I'm more pleased that we were even able to keep a clean sheet and I thank Sutton for that."

"Playing against the wind in the first half is always difficult we never really gained possession of the ball and play the type of soccer we want to play," Hartman said. "(We) ended up defending for 45 straight minutes in the first half, and maybe a bit fortunate to get into halftime (at 0-0)."

  • MLS

    Apr 26 5:36 PM

    TORONTO FC GOAL: Amado Guevara in the 78th minute

    Sporting Kansas City 0, Toronto FC 2  2nd - 78'Apr 26 5:21 PM

    TORONTO FC GOAL: Amado Guevara in the 56th minute

    Sporting Kansas City 0, Toronto FC 1  2nd - 56'Apr 26 4:59 PM

  • MLS

    Apr 26 4:31 PM