MLS Saturday; Lousy Weather, Lousy Defense and Lousy Aim

Nothing particularly surprising happened in LA yesterday: the now-routine MLS "Hat Trick of the Week" award goes to Conor Casey, who a) scored the second fastest goal in league history, b) had the game winner in the 84th minute and c) was so dedicated to defending that he got a caution for persistent infringement.

For Bruce Arena's Greybeard Army, Landon Donovan had two assists, Dema Kovalenko went in studs up on Mehdi Ballouchy and got a sendoff courtesy of Michael Kennedy.

For absolute ugliness, it would be hard to match the Galaxy's "defense" on the game winner, as Colin Clark stripped the ball off of Sean Franklin's foot and played a long ball to Casey, who rookie Omar Gonzalez was playing offside but Tony "Big Scat" Sanneh didn't get the memo, which left LA Keeper Josh Saunders all alone. Game, set and match, Colorado.

At the end of the day, Colorado got their second win, the Gals are still looking for their first, Mrs. Arena is hiding all the sharp objects and Los Angeles soccer fans are left to ponder a question:

If Cobi Jones and Doug Hamilton (AKA St. Douglas of Carson) hadn't conspired to fire Sigi Schmid because he "didn't play attractive soccer" just how many very attractive MLS Cups would they have won by now?

Which of course brings us to the Sounders, led by the aforementioned Round Mound of Coaching (AKA "God" in Seattle) who had to leave the league's leading scorer at home with either a) the flu or b) some problems with his social skills, but nevertheless laid a big old can of whoopass on Toronto FC in their home opener.

TFC coach John Carver later apologized to the fans for his team's wretched performance, as wily old Arsenal veteran Freddy Ljundberg - who moved up to Montero's striker spot - scored his first MLS goal, Superdraft #1 overall pick Steve Zakuani, exactly three games out of the University of Akron, also scored his first and Seattle went to 3-0, becoming the first expansion team to ever start the season with three wins and, just for good measure, also the first one to not give up a goal in their first 270 minutes of existence.

And just as a "Welcome to BEEMO" gift for Ljundberg, when he twisted his knee and was helped acrss the touch line for medical assistance, one of TFC's "great, great fans" threw "a full cup of beer" at him (and, to be fair, managed to hit him which is more than you can say for the person who threw the bottle at Sigi; seriously, how bad is your aim when you can't hit someone the size of Jupiter from 40 feet away?) after which about half of those "great great fans" headed for the exits; by around 80 minutes, with their team down 2 goals, they apparently remembered they had someplace else to be.

Meanwhile, in Gillette Stadium, FC Dallas, winless in two consecutive home games, went on the road, made six lineup changes, (mostly due to injuries) and managed to make a game of it but left town still looking for their first 2009 win.

Despite a game-opening goal from Kenny Cooper, FCD couldn't respond to two second half Revolution scores, the first from Sainey Nayassi off of a Shalrie Joseph assist and the game winner, an 80th minute PK from Steve Ralston after George John grabbed a big old handful of Kheli Dube's jersey, apparently not wanting to wait until after the match to get himself one of those snazzy New England shirts.

There are six winless teams in MLS at the moment, but Dallas is the only outfit with three losses, staking a claim to being, currently, the worst team in the league although KC has a shot at matching them later today when they take on the Saint Joe.

At RFK, conversely, DC United left the ranks of the winless in the rear view mirror as Luciano Emilio hit the net a couple minutes after halftime and the DC defense, despite some scary moments, made it stand up for a 1-0 win over the Dynamo.

The Uniteds could have folded after a seemingly very harsh red card sent Jaime Moreno packing around the 70the minute but not even the legendary incompetence of Baldomero Toledo could deny them the win, with Louis Crayton doing some spectacular late work between the pipes.

(I'm sorry, but is there a better expression in all of sports than "between the pipes"?)

Houston limps out of town with only a home-opening draw keeping them from joining Dallas in 0-3 territory, having scored a grand total of one goal in three games. Their defense is certainly not playing badly - unlike, for example, the Galaxy's - but a very wise old soccer wizard once remarked to me that you have to score or you can't win.

Keep it between us.