What a season for the Colorado Rapids, especially when you think about the minimal expectations put on the team at the beginning of the season. Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end and the Rapids end came Wednesday night where they lost in a play-in playoff game on the road to the Seattle Sounders 2-0.
The Rapids started the game tentatively and they were living very dangerously. The pressure from Seattle was very apparent, and the Rapids goal was finally breached in the 29th minute, when Brad Evans powerful shot low to the ground left Rapids GK Clint Irwin with no chance for the save. The first half ended with the score still 1-0 in favor of a totally dominant Seattle.
The 2nd half was more of the same with Seattle really dominating the possession and the majority of the goal scoring chances, and really Seattle could have been up by 2-3 goals by the hour mark. There was a glimmer of hope for the Rapids when Seattle GK Michael Gspurning handled the ball outside of his box, and was upset with Rapids forward Edson Buddle appealing for a call, Gspurning then shoved the Rapids striker in the face. It was a stupid move by Gspurning and he was shown a red card for his foolishness. With a man advantage, the Rapids tried to search for an equalizer, but it never came. They just couldn’t get anything going and in the 90th minute, Seattle sealed the victory when Eddie Johnson received a pass from Clint Dempsey and slotted the ball into the net passed Clint Irwin.
Like that the 2013 Colorado Rapids season is over. Many will question Rapids coach Oscar Pareja’s curious decision to start Atiba Harris over Dillion Powers. All night, Colorado tried to attack down the right to no avail.
A disappointing end to a great season for the Colorado Rapids. They have a promising foundation that seems to be intact for the future. Tonight showed they are not at the level to win an MLS Cup yet, but this was a valuable playoff experience which will payoff in the upcoming season and beyond.