for this game

Rocha scores late, nets FC Dallas draw with D.C. United

Sep 14, 2008 - 4:29 AM WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- Holding leads has been difficult for FC Dallas lately. Thankfully for its fading playoff hopes, it was able to salvage a point after yet another meltdown on Saturday.

Andre Rocha scored the tying goal in the 79th minute, sending Dallas to a 2-2 draw with D.C. United.

After Santino Quaranta gave D.C. United (10-11-3) its first lead of the game in the 69th minute with his fifth goal of the campaign, Rocha received a nice cross from Eric Avila on the right side of the goal and fired a shot into the net vacated by goalkeeper Louis Crayton.

"It's frustrating because we were 10 minutes from getting three points," Quaranta said. "We needed to get three points and these little mistakes, these little breakdowns, are killing us. They deserve the point, I guess, but we still had chances."

Following victories in its first two matches after the All-Star break by a combined scored of 6-0, Dallas (6-9-9) is 0-3-2 in its last five and has been outscored, 8-5.

Despite continuing its winless streak, Dallas was not unhappy with the result.

"The fact that the team gave 100 percent and we helped each other was most important," FC Dallas midfielder Marcelo Saragosa said. "And the one point was good for us. The team kept their heads up and we scored the second goal so we're very happy right now."

"I think it really showed a lot of character coming into this environment," Dallas coach Schellas Hyndman said. "This is a very tough place to come and play and every time they made a substitute, they were bringing a better player out. I'm very pleased with their character, never giving up in the end."

Nonetheless, the stretch has been frustrating for Dallas as it has blown a lead in each of the four of those contests.

However, its one-point result on Saturday enabled it to pull into a fifth-place tie in the Western Conference standings with idle Colorado (8-12-3), breaking its tie at the bottom of the division with Los Angeles (6-10-8) after the Galaxy were defeated, 2-0, by Kansas City.

"The thing I'm happy with is getting a point on the road against such a good team," Hyndman said. "Being down, 2-1, if you look at our track record, we take leads and then fall asleep and give us quick goals. This time, we battled back."

D.C. United coach Tom Soehn was not nearly as pleased.

"It was very disappointing, especially with the (playoff) race as tight as it is," Soehn said. "We gave away balls and gave away counter-attacks. We created chances and didn't finish them, but we were too easy to play against the other way."

FC Dallas jumped out to another advantage, 1-0, in the ninth minute when Kenny Cooper opened the scoring on an unassisted goal - his 14th of the season - to pull within two tallies of MLS leader Landon Donovan in the race for the Golden Boot.

The lead was short-lived as Jaime Moreno answered with his 10th goal of the campaign in the 26th minute on a header on a brilliant cross from Thabiso Khumalo.

Crayton recorded six saves for D.C. United while keeper Dario Sala stopped four shots for Dallas.