Gallery: Houston at LA 1
Robert Mora

LA-HOU: Postgame Notes & Quotes

LA Galaxy 4, Houston Dynamo 1
Saturday, June 5, 2010
The Home Depot Center — Carson, Calif.

Scoring Summary:
LA – Jovan Kirovski 2 (Sean Franklin 3, Michael Stephens 4) 1’
HOU – Cam Weaver 1 (Unassisted) 7’
LA – Jovan Kirovski 3 (Sean Franklin 4, Michael Stephens 5) 21’
LA – Tristan Bowen 2 (Unassisted) 48’
LA – Alex Cazumba 1 (Michael Stephens 6) 56’

Misconduct Summary:
LA – Gregg Berhalter (Yellow Card) 60’

LA Galaxy: Donovan Ricketts, Todd Dunivant, Gregg Berhalter© (A.J. DeLaGarza 78’), Omar Gonzalez, Sean Franklin; Chris Birchall, Alex Cazumba, Juninho (Chris Klein 61’), Michael Stephens, Tristan Bowen, Jovan Kirovski (Clint Mathis 70’).

Subs Not Used: Josh Saunders, Eddie Lewis, Alan Gordon, Bryan Jordan.

Houston Dynamo: Pat Onstad, Craig Waibel (Brian Mullan 60’), Eddie Robinson, Bobby Boswell, Andrew Hainault, Danny Cruz (Dominic Oduro 60’), Brad Davis (Richard Mulrooney 67’), Lovel Palmer, Corey Ashe, Brian Ching©, Cam Weaver.

Subs Not Used: Tally Hall, Ryan Cochrane, Francisco Navas Cobo, Joseph Ngwenya,

• With the win, the Galaxy are now 10-0-2 on the season, giving them 32 points. They remain alone in first place in the Western Conference and are now 12 points ahead of second place Real Salt Lake who have 20 points. The Galaxy face Real Salt Lake on Wednesday night at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah.
• Bruce Arena made two changes to the team that defeated Columbus 2-0 in Ohio last weekend. Alex Cazumba and Juninho each returned to the starting lineup, replacing Mike Magee, who missed the game with right hip soreness and A.J. DeLaGarza, who started the game on the bench.
• In addition to Magee, the Galaxy were also without Dema Kovalenko and Leonardo who missed the game through injury, while Edson Buddle and Landon Donovan were in South Africa with the U.S. National Team ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
• Alex Cazumba was making his first start for the club since the 2-0 win over Chivas USA on April 1.
• Jovan Kirovski gave the Galaxy a 1-0 lead 47 seconds into the game with his second goal of the season. The goal was the third fastest in club history behind Clint Mathis who scored 33 seconds into LA’s 2-1 win over Kansas City on July 25, 1999 and Brian Mullan, who scored 39 seconds into a 4-4 draw at Tampa Bay on May 9, 2001. The goal is Galaxy fastest goal in 2010, surpassing A.J. DeLaGarza’s 53-second goal against Philadelphia on May 1.
• Cam Weaver tied the game at 1-all with his first goal of the season in the seventh minute. The goal snapped the club’s streak of minutes without allowing a goal at 463 minutes. The streak, which was the longest in MLS this year, started on the 84th minute of a 3-1 win over Philadelphia on May 1.
• Kirovski gave the lead back to the Galaxy in the 21st minute with his second goal of the game, his first multi-goal performance with the club since October 9, 2004 and fourth overall. Kirovski moves into a three-way tie with forwards Carlos Hermosillo and Welton for sixth place on the club’s all-time list for most-goal games.
• Tristan Bowen scored his second goal in as many games early in the second half, giving LA a 3-1 lead. He has now recorded a goal or an assist in all three MLS games that he has started this season.
• Alex Cazumba gave the Galaxy a 4-1 lead with his first career goal in MLS in the 56th minute. Cazumba, who will turn 22 later this month, played the full 90 minutes.
• Rookie Michael Stephens recorded a career-high three assists on the evening, doubling his season total to six. He is now just three assists shy of MLS and team leader, Landon Donovan.
• Sean Franklin recorded two assists on the day to bring up his season total to four.
• Donovan Ricketts improves his season record to 10-0-1. He recorded one save in the game and now has an MLS best 0.28 goals against average.
• When Gregg Berhalter left the field, he handed the captain’s armband to Chris Klein, who came in for Juninho in the 61sth minute of the game.
• LA is now 12 points ahead of the Eastern Conference leading Columbus Crew, who will play at Colorado later this evening, for the best record in MLS. The Crew are 6-1-3 for 21 points this season.
• The attendance for today’s game was 20,826.
• The Galaxy are back in action this Wednesday, June 9 when they travel to Sandy, Utah to take on Western Conference Second-Place Real Salt Lake. That game kicks off at 6:00 p.m. (PT) and can be seen delayed on Fox Sports West at 11 p.m. (PT). 


LA Galaxy Head Coach Bruce Arena
On the result:

“We’re certainly pleased to get the three points. Houston played real hard and physical in the first half. In all fairness to them, their schedule over the past week with three games and a travel, they hit the wall in the second half, but that’s not to take away from our team and the way they came in the second half. We really ended the game with those two quick goals in the second half. We came out and did what we needed to do in the second half.”

On Tristan Bowen’s performance:
“Tristan took his chance real well, and had couple of other great goal scoring opportunities. He’s got these fabulous physical tools. He needs these games for the experience, but with all things being equal, the way we’ve thrown him in there the last couple of weeks, he’s responded in a tremendous manner.”

On Michael Stephens’ form:
“Michael Stephens continues to play well. He’s a very good player and versatile. He can play hard for 90 minutes, and he’s really helped make a difference in our midfield with his quickness and endurance.”

On Jovan Kirovski:
“He was excellent. Obviously, the two goals were big. He held the ball well. He’s a good partner with Tristan. He could be a little more permanent in the center part of the field, which allows Tristan run into space, which is obviously one of his strengthens.”

On Alex Cazumba:
“It was a great goal. We’ve been looking for him to do that since he arrived here. He’s been a little bit hesitant. It was great to see him to come out of his shell a little bit tonight. He was a little bit more explosive than we’ve seen during the season. That was a real positive. It was a great goal, a great finish.”

LA Galaxy Goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts
On the disappointment of having his shutout streak snapped:

“I’m not disappointed at all. Once we get three points I’m happy. My focus is on winning games, not just keeping clean sheets and that’s what we did tonight.”

On the play of the back four:
“As usual, they were solid. That’s been a hallmark of the team last season and into this one.”

On Wednesday’s game against Real Salt Lake:
“It’s just another game. It’s another game toward our goal of getting points and qualifying for the playoffs. Nothing new if it is the Red Bulls or Salt Lake or anyone else, we just want another three points.”

LA Galaxy Forward Jovan Kirovski
On his two goals:

“The first one, we wanted to get off to a quick start. Sean [Franklin] breaking down the right. He played a great ball in. I made a little move, found a little space. It was a great ball in, and all I had to do was put it in. The second one we had a good build up to it. Sean, again, looked up and picked me out, and fortunately the ball went in.”

On the depth of the Galaxy:
“We have a good team. We have a good group of first years. Landon and Edson are gone. We’ve had guys come in and step up, and we’ve done well. We have a deep squad. Look at our bench; we had Eddie Lewis, Chris Klein, guys that have played in international games and in Europe. We have good quality players.”

LA Galaxy Defender Gregg Berhalter
On the Galaxy defense:

“I think it was a good effort. Obviously, giving up the goal, we aren’t happy about that, so we’ll look at that. We strive to get shutouts, and we didn’t get that. So it was a good game, but not a great game.”

LA Galaxy Forward Tristan Bowen
On why the Galaxy’s depth has been so successful:
“The competition in practice. Bruce did a great job in getting a bunch of competitors on the team that every game when we go into practice we have to fight for our spot— and obviously when you hear your number called everybody wants to go out there and compete and show why they should be on the field. That’s the secret.”

On scoring early:
“I think we’re playing well the first 20 minutes of the game. We go out there with a lot of intensity and the guys are coming out sharp. (The goals) are just the end product of us being at our best in the first 20 minutes of the game.”

LA Galaxy Midfielder Michael Stephens
On the team’s performance of the game:

“Giving up that goal early in the game wasn’t a good thing, but overall we put the pressure on them and had a great game offensively.”

On his three assists:
“I’m pleased. I found myself in good spots, high up the field in good attacking positions and I was able to contribute offensively, which is something that I want to continue to do the rest of the season.”

Houston Dynamo Head Coach Dominic Kinnear
On his team’s performance:

“I think we were doing okay in the first half and in the second half we ran out of gas. It’s disappointing we are all disappointed because this is a proud group and this is the first time we have lost three in a row ever and a lot of question marks about the way we are playing. How our guys are playing individually and collectively so it’s a very disappointing time.”

Houston Dynamo Midfielder Lovel Palmer
On the game:

“It was a tough game. Every time you play obviously it is going to be hard especially every time a team plays against the Houston Dynamo because they expect us to come out and play well. They know that we are a good team so they’re going to come out with their A game. The New York game was a tough one and then a long flight out here so I think the guys are a little bit tired but we can’t find excuses, we need to find ways to win games. It’s tough but we are going to have to bounce back for the Colorado game.”

On the team’s three-game losing streak:
“It’s the first time in Dynamo history that we’ve lost three games on the trot so we just have to look ourselves in the mirror, evaluate our performance and work on it as individuals and as a team. We have to refocus over the next couple of weeks.”

Houston Dynamo Forward Brian Ching
On the game:

“There’s not much to say about that one. Disappointing. I can’t remember the last time this team lost three games in a row, so things aren’t going good. Tough week.”