The Columbus Crew did everything right for 90 minutes, except for scoring a third goal.
Robbie Rogers changed that in the 91st minute.
Rogers scored the game-winning goal in stoppage time to give the unbeaten Crew a dramatic 3-2 win over the New England Revolution at Crew Stadium Saturday night.
“We got the three points which is the most important,” Rogers said. “A draw tonight would have felt like a loss for sure.”
The game featured four goals in the first half and a second half with many scoring opportunities for the Crew.
Zak Boggs, a rookie making his first start for the Revolution, opened up the scoring in the 29th minute.
His shot from 25 yards should have been a routine block, but instead hit off the hands of Crew goalkeeper Will Hesmer and crossed the goal line.
Columbus responded two minutes later when Eddie Gaven tied the game.
A bad clearance by New England defender Cory Gibbs set up Gaven’s shot past the keeper.
Gibbs committed another error in the 35th minute when he tried to clear out a cross from Rogers by sliding. He instead deflected the ball past his own keeper to put the Crew up 2-1.
Five minutes later, Boggs scored his second goal of the game after impressive passing set him up to one-touch it past Hesmer.
“It was one of those games where the goals are coming fast and furious,” Gaven said. “Sometimes that’s the way the game goes.”
Crew coach Robert Warzycha said his team began to look like the team of ‘08 and ‘09 in the second half, when it created many scoring chances.
Revolution goalkeeper Preston Burpo was kept busy by the Crew attack in the second half.
Burpo denied two of Gaven’s shots in the box in the 62th minute and soon after blocked forward Steven Lenhart’s shot on a breakaway.
“We probably created enough chances to get four or five goals,” Gaven said. “That’s definitely a good sign for us. We just have to do a better job of putting them in the net.”
Gaven also had a back-heel shot that touched off the top bar and right into the hands of the keeper in the 89th minute.
The end came when Jason Garey’s header was barely saved by New England defender Darrius Barnes at the goal line, with Rogers picking up the rebound and finishing.
The stadium erupted as Rogers celebrated his first goal of the season. He was given a yellow card for taking off his jersey while celebrating.
When asked if that was worth it, Rogers answered, “For sure. Maybe even a red card.”
It was a game in which the Crew dominated, out-shooting the Revolution 16-7, including 8-4 in shots on goal.
“I think the better team won tonight,” defender Frankie Hejduk said.
The Crew welcomes Chivas USA to Columbus on May 15.