New England Soccer Today

Three Points

Rookie Stephen McCarthy scored his second career goal late in the second half and goalkeeper Matt Reis assured it was all the New England Revolution would need to get their first victory since May 14th, defeating D.C. United 1-0 in 90 degree heat on Wednesday night.

Rookie Stephen McCarthy scored his second career goal on Wednesday. (Photo by CHRIS ADUAMA/

The Revs (4-9-7, 19 points) moved out of the cellar of the Eastern Conference, leap frogging the  Chicago Fire and Toronto F.C., while ending their club record winless streak at nine games and picking up their first road victory of the season. It was the second time this season the Revs beat D.C. (5-6-8, 23 points).

McCarthy’s game winner came in the 73rd minute after some confusion in the D.C. backline lead to a corner kick for the Revolution. Chris Tierney took the set piece, curling a cross into the box where McCarthy used his six-foot-four frame to rise above the defense and head the ball past ‘keeper Bill Hamid and inside the far post.

The rest of the match was highlighted by six impressive saves from Reis and a missed penalty kick by New England-native and D.C. striker Charlie Davies, assuring one goal would be all the Revs needed for a crucial victory.

The Revs, missing Benny Feilhaber due to suspension, but benefiting from the returns of captain Shalrie Joseph and Ryan Cochrane, used a 4-3-3 formation to start the match. Reis kept his regular place in goal behind a backline of Kevin Alston, A.J. Soares, Cochrane and Tierney. Joseph was paired with McCarthy and Pat Phelan in the midfield while Zak Boggs, Rajko Lekic and Zack Schilawski made up the front line.

D.C. United nearly struck first just two minutes in when a cross from the right flank fell tantalizingly between Dwayne De Rosario and the Revolution goal. De Rosario got a touch on it, but couldn’t direct it on frame from close range.

Charlie Davies used his pace to cause the Revs backline problems in the 17th minute, slicing across the top of the box before dragging a shot back to the near post that Reis just tipped wide with a diving save. A minute later Reis was called on again, this time stopping De Rosario on a shot from the top of the box.

“Whenever you’re playing away from home that is usually the key – you have to try to keep it at zero for as long as you can and that’s what we did tonight as a team,” said Reis. “As the game goes on more and more that it’s zero-zero, it’s only going to frustrate the home team and help out the visitors and that’s kind of what happened today.”

Boggs threatened D.C.’s net in the 32nd minute as the Revs pushed forward. The Revolution midfielder volleyed a powerful shot from the top of the box on frame, but it was right at D.C. goalie Bill Hamid.

D.C. blew a golden opportunity to take the lead in the 44th minute after the home team earned a penalty when a D.C. cross was blocked by the arm of Phelan. Referee Michael Kennedy immediately called for a penalty kick and Davies stepped to take it, but hit his shot well high of the net.

“The way things have been going [with] horrible luck and bad bounces – we got that [missed penalty kick] and I think the whole team was like, alright this has to be the one,” said McCarthy. “So I think definitely [the missed penalty kick] was probably a game-changer.”

The Revs looked to take advantage of tired legs in the D.C. heat by bringing pace into the game in the second half. Sainey Nyassi entered for Boggs in the 58th minute and Kenny Mansally came in for Schilawski ten minutes later.

Though the pair weren’t involved in the Revs 73rd minute goal, Nyassi used his pace to get behind the D.C. defense on a Joseph pass and take a touch around Hamid, but was unable to keep his balance well enough to finish.

Reis would save the Revs twice in the final minutes, first stopping De Rosario with a kick save after the Canadian got behind the Revs defense in the 82nd minute. Then in stoppage time Reis denied a shot from substitute Joseph Ngwenya at the top of the box.

The Revs remain on the road and take on the Colorado Rapids on Saturday.

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