Late goals, several of them on penalty kicks, were decisive in six of eight Major League Soccer games this week as the L.A. Galaxy maintained a five-point lead in the Western Conference and New York went back on top in the Eastern Conference.
Edson Buddle's seventh goal of the season, a blistering 76th-minute shot, lifted the Galaxy past Real Salt Lake, 2-1, in a rematch of last year's MLS Cup final. The Galaxy (4-0-0, 12 points) has the only perfect mark in the league.
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Juan Pablo Angel scored two goals against FC Dallas in New York's victory Saturday.
Seattle and New York triumphed in the most dramatic finishes. The Sounders (2-1-1, 7 points) overcame Kansas City (2-1-0, 6) on rookie Michael Fucito's stoppage-time finish from former UC Irvine standout Brad Evans' throw-in. The Red Bulls (3-1-0, 9 points) got two goals from Juan Pablo Angel, the second on a 90th-minute penalty kick, to topple FC Dallas (0-1-2, 2 points).
Marco Pappa and Brian McBride struck in the final 10 minutes to lead Chicago (1-2-1, 4 points) past woeful D.C. United (0-4-0, 0 points), which was shut out for the third time. D.C.'s decimated roster led coach Curt Onalfo to start 17-year-old Andy Najar in the attacking midfield slot.
Dwayne De Rosario scored all three goals -- two of them on penalty kicks -- for Toronto FC (1-3-0, 3 points). The Reds beat expansion Philadelphia (1-2-0, 3 points) on the Canadian star's 81st-minute spot kick Thursday, then fell to Colorado (2-1-1, 7 points) on Sunday, a result secured on Conor Casey's penalty kick, his second goal of the game.
De Rosario has four goals, second-best in the league, and three of them have been from the spot.
Houston (2-1-1, 7 points) routed Chivas USA (1-3-0, 3 points) and San Jose (2-1-0, 6 points) beat New England (2-2-0, 6 points). Columbus (1-0-1, 4 points) was idle.
This week's scores (home teams listed first):
Toronto FC 2 (De Rosario 35, pen. 81), Philadelphia (Harvey 46+)
Seattle 1 (Fucito 92+), Kansas City 0
Houston 3 (Cameron 12, Palmer 20, Oduro 65), Chivas USA 0
D.C. United 0, Chicago 2 (Pappa 80, McBride 89)
New York 2 (Angel 56, pen. 90), FC Dallas 1 (McCarty 10)
San Jose 2 (Wondolowski 57, Opara 72), New England 0
Los Angeles 2 (Buddle 12, 76), Real Salt Lake 1 (Beckerman 41)
Colorado 3 (Casey 24, pen. 85, Larentowicz 71), Toronto FC 1 (De Rosario pen. 58)