Led by Erick “Cubo” Torres’ game-winning goal in his Chivas USA debut, the Rojiblancos shutout Toronto FC, 1-0, playing a man down beginning in the 25th minute Wednesday night at the StubHub Center. With the result, the Red-and-White ended their 14-winless streak. Chivas USA goalkeeper and captain Dan Kennedy recorded his second clean sheet of the season and was aided by defender Carlos Bocanegra, who also made his Chivas USA debut as part of the starting eleven.
Chivas USA’s attackers started to get into range from the 21st minute on, as Tristan Bowen took a free kick from about 25 yards out behind the arc, but his attempt sailed high of the crossbar. Seven minutes later, Bowen got off a strike from outside the box from the right wing that TFC goalkeeper Joe Bendik was able control. A minute later, midfielder Marco Delgado got off a shot of his own, this time from the left wing. The right-footed attempt was bobbled by Bendik and was momentarily loose inside the box, but TFC was able to clear away the threat.
Locked in a scoreless tie in the second half, the Rojiblancos continued to push their attackers forward in search of a score. In the 48th minute, Bowen worked the ball into the right side of the box and played a cross to midfielder Carlos Alvarez, whose attempted bicycle kick traveled over the crossbar.
Kennedy came up big in the 54th minute to keep the match a zero, as he denied Darel Rusel’s tap in attempt inside the short area. TFC got off a follow-up shot that was kept out by Delgado who was positioned near the goal line for the save.
The Red-and-White had another dangerous look at taking the lead in the 60th minute, when Bowen sent a low cross near the right sideline through the box that found Torres. The forward gathered the pass, took two steps toward goal and got off a left-footed attempt from the six-yard line that was batted away at the last second by Bendik.
Torres, however, would not be denied on his next look at goal, as the forward put the Rojiblancos ahead when he blasted his first goal in the 79th minute after Bowen found the Guadalajara native on the right seam. Torres worked the ball back toward the center of the pitch and unleashed his left-footed strike near the arc, which grazed off a Reds defender and found the back of the net for the eventual game-winner.