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Victorine, Lopez help Wizards edge Chivas

Aug 10, 2008 - 4:10 AM By Pat Madden PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

KANSAS CITY, Kansas (Ticker) -- The Kansas City Wizards extended their home unbeaten streak to four games by handing Chivas USA a 3-2 defeat at Community America Ballpark on Saturday.

The victory allowed the Wizards (6-6-7) to move into a three-way tie for fourth place in the Eastern Conference, with DC United (8-8-1) and Toronto (7-8-4). Each team has 25 points.

Chivas (6-8-4) remains in fifth place in the West, one point behind fourth-place Los Angeles (6-8-5).

Kansas City, which had scored seven goals in its previous seven games, scored three goals in a game for the first time since April 5 and improved to 5-2-2 at home.

"I thought we played very, very well for 72 minutes or so," Wizards coach Curt Onalfo said. "We found something; we've been tinkering with things. We could have very well had more in the first half. ... Maybe a couple of weeks ago, we wouldn't have scored three goals."

Sasha Victorine's first goal, a diving header past Chivas goalkeeper Zach Thornton, put the Wizards up 1-0 in the 22nd minute. The ball was played into the penalty area by defender Matt Marquess, who earned his first MLS point.

Claudio Lopez, who started the play off a corner kick, also collected an assist.

"I saw the ball bounce back out to Claudio," Victorine said. "I looked up and Jimmy (Conrad) and I were in the middle of the goal, so Jimmy peeled off to the back post and I went to the near post and we tried to figure out which one of us he (Chivas defender Shavar Thomas) was going to take.

"He was a little slow in figuring out where he was going to go, and I was able to beat him to the near post. Most of the far post was open, so I wanted to make sure I got solid contact on it."

Kansas City extended the margin to 2-0 in the 44th minute on Lopez's fourth goal, a sliding left-footed shot inside the penalty area.

"As I was about to take my first touch, I looked up and saw Claudio making that run and I was just trying to get a good first touch into space so the next touch got the ball into his feet," Arnaud said. "He timed his run well and it was a good finish and a pretty good goal."

The Wizards added an insurance goal in the 58th minute on Davy Arnaud's second tally to make it 3-0.

"We were pleased coming in at half up, 2-0, and we talked about getting that third goal and putting the game away and we did," Onalfo said. "The third goal ended up being the difference."

Chivas' Carey Talley converted a penalty kick in the 73rd minute to slice the margin to, 3-1, his second goal. Justin Braun's third goal, a header off a corner kick from Talley, halved the lead to 3-2 in the 82nd minute.

"We never quit," Chivas coach Preki said. "We moved the ball around the last 20 minutes of the game, our problem was the first half. We conceded a couple of silly goals, but with a young team, that's going to happen."

"We controlled the game for the first 70 minutes; we created more than just those chances," Arnaud said. "It could have been even more. I didn't think they were troubling us too much other than set pieces, and then in the 70th minute, we just stopped playing. You can't let teams back in the game and let them hurt us."-

Chivas, which is winless in its last three matches, was without its two top scorers - midfielder Sacha Kljestan, who is with the United States Olympic team in Beijing, and Ante Razov, who suffered a knee sprain in practice last week.

Wizards goalkeeper Kevin Hartman made five saves, including three in the game's final minutes, to pick up the victory. Thornton stopped one shot in the loss.