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Preki Preserves the Wizards’ Playoff Hopes

October 16, 2005

FRISCO, Texas (AP) _ Preki scored in the 90th minute to lift Kansas City in a 2-2 tie with FC Dallas on Saturday night, preserving the Wizards’ playoff hopes.

The Wizards finished the regular season with an eight-game winless streak (0-4-4) and must now hope the MetroStars lose or tie Sunday against Chivas USA to claim the fourth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Dallas finshed with 48 points and will be second in the West unless the Los Angeles Galaxy won by seven or more goals in their final match against San Jose later Saturday.

Preki’s crucial goal, his second of the season and 79th of his MLS career, came just as regulation time was about to expire. Josh Wolff cut into the box and drilled a shot that Dallas goalkeeper Scott Garlick saved but could not control.

The ball bounced right to a charging Preki, who blasted home the easy rebound.

The Wizards, last year’s MLS Cup finalists, rebounded from a 2-0 deficit in the final 13 minutes on goals by Davy Arnaud and Preki.

Just 2 minutes after Ramon Nunez had given Dallas a 2-0 lead, Arnaud raced deep into the box and beat a diving Garlick with a perfect shot to the upper right part of the net in the 77th minute.

FC Dallas had numerous offensive chances before finally breaking through in the 69th minute when 37-year-old midfielder Oscar Pareja scored his first goal of the season and 13th of his career.

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