Earthquakes 3, Crew 1
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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) _ Landon Donovan scored two first-half goals and Manny Lagos added another score as the San Jose Earthquakes beat the Columbus Crew 3-1 Saturday night in the opening round of the MLS playoffs.
Ronnie Ekelund lofted a pass inside the penalty area to Donovan, who scored past charging goalkeeper Tom Presthus in the 5th minute.
Dovovan gave San Jose a 3-0 lead just before halftime when he collected an errant clearing attempt by Tenywa Bonseu that bounced off John Harkes’ back and scored from 19 yards.
The Earthquakes’ stingy defense, which allowed a league low 30 goals this season, pushed Crew players off the ball and repeatedly fouled them just outside the penalty area in the first half. San Jose was whistled for 14 fouls in the first half, while Columbus was whistled for six in the first half.
Columbus, which managed just one shot in the first half, outshot the Earthquakes 13-2 in the second half.
Robert Warzycha scored off a penalty kick in the 54th minute for Columbus. The free kick was awarded after defender Jimmy Conrad took Brian Maisonneuve down in the penalty box.
The Crew challenged goalkeeper Joe Cannon several times late, including on a low shot by Warzycha that Cannon pushed wide near the post. Cannon finished with four saves.
Lagos scored in the 31st minute for San Jose. Junior Agogo passed from inside the penalty area to Lagos, who scored on a low shot inside the far post
Lagos was permitted to play in the game after his red-card suspension was delayed until next season by the league. Lagos would have served his suspension during the regular season had the remaining games not been canceled after the terrorist attacks.
The loss, in front of a crowd of 20,883, snapped Columbus’ 11-match home unbeaten streak. The second game of the best-of-three series is Wednesday night in San Jose.