for this game

Donovan nets hat trick as Galaxy snaps winless streak

Sep 21, 2008 - 6:57 AM CARSON, California (Ticker) -- Landon Donovan recorded a hat trick and added an assist as the Los Angeles Galaxy snapped a 12-match winless streak with a 5-2 triumph over D.C. United on Saturday.

The league leader with 19 goals, Donovan notched his sixth multi-goal game of the season by tallying in the 23rd, 35th and 92nd minutes for Los Angeles (7-10-8), which entered Saturday's contest with the fourth-longest winless streak in MLS history. It had gone 0-6-6 in its previous 12 matches.

Alan Gordon scored in the 38th minute and Peter Vagenas tallied in the 81st for the Galaxy, who won for the first time since recording a 3-0 triumph over the San Jose Earthquakes on June 14.

Devon McTavis and Thabiso Khumalo netted their first goals of the season in the second and 47th minutes, respectively, for D.C. United (10-12-3), which fell to 2-9-1 on the road.

Donovan leveled the contest at 1-1 in the 23rd minute as Chris Klein slipped a through ball from midfield that hit the superstar in stride. Donovan alertly avoided charging goalkeeper Louis Crayton and tapped the ball into the vacant net.

"Even after giving up the goal so early, I felt that we still could have a good night," Donovan said. "We're not as bad a team as the one at the bottom of the standings. Having (David) Beckham and now Eddie Lewis is really going to help down the line. I was glad to see the response the team had to going down early, and it gives me confidence for the rest of the season."

Los Angeles took a 2-1 advantage when Donovan accepted a feed from David Beckham and blasted a shot from outside the penalty box that sailed past an outstretched Crayton and into the net.

The Galaxy gained a two-goal cushion after a wild sequence of defensive miscues by D.C. United. After the teams struggled to gain possession, Eddie Lewis unleashed a shot that caromed off a defender and right to Gordon, who slipped the ball just inside the left goalpost for his fifth tally of the campaign.

Khumalo halved the deficit just two minutes into the second half for D.C. United, but Donovan was able to regain the Galaxy's two-goal advantage by setting up Vagenas in the penalty box in the 81st minute.

Donovan capped his hat trick with his 19th tally of the season, moving five goals past FC Dallas' Kenny Cooper in the race for the Golden Boot.

"I was very disappointed with the way we started the game, but I'm very happy with the way we reacted," Los Angeles coach Bruce Arena said. "We ended the half with an impressive lead, and then to come out in the second half and give up that goal, these are bad habits.

"I think that the effort tonight was great, although it wasn't perfect (though) I think Donovan had an excellent night."

D.C. United coach Tom Soehn also credited Donovan for his efforts.

"I thought we started out with a good rhythm and got the early goal," Soehn said. "We turned over the ball in some really bad spots, and with guys like Landon around, you can't afford to do that.

"We started the second half and with some energy and fought our way back into the game."

D.C. United's Marc Burch was given a red card in the 63rd minute after tripping Beckham along the sideline.

"I told the linesman that I didn't think it was a red card," Beckham said. "He took a hack at me and a push and my momentum just carried me into the sign board. It wasn't a red card, but they wouldn't hear of it and that's what happened."






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    D.C. United 2, Galaxy 5  FinalSep 21 2:24 AM


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    DC UNITED GOAL: Devon McTavish in the 2nd minute

    D.C. United 1, Galaxy 0  1st - 2'Sep 20 11:08 PM