Sockers top Blast, 5-3, spoil Farias' return to San Diego

Ex-Blast player Dougherty contributes goal, assist

Soccer

February 15, 2004|By Glae Thien | Glae Thien,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

SAN DIEGO -Chile Farias arrived to greetings from well-wishers and former teammates last night upon returning for the first time with the Blast to the city where he formerly played.

However, when the game with the San Diego Sockers started, Farias found the reception wasn't so kind, even though he recorded a goal and an assist.

The Blast lost, 5-3, before 4,670 at the San Diego Sports Arena, as former Blast player Paul Dougherty recorded a goal and assist in the second half to help the Sockers pull away.

It proved to be a tough night for Blast defender Neil Gilbert, who scored an own goal credited to San Diego and committed a penalty that led to a Sockers power-play goal, both in the third quarter.

After rallying for a 2-2 halftime tie, the Blast (18-8) again fell behind at 2:14 of the third quarter, when Gilbert inadvertently headed the ball into the goal. The score was credited to former Blast player Paul Wright.

The Blast's Denison Cabral tied the score at 9:24, but Mariano Bollella put the Sockers (11-13) ahead at 14:26, with three seconds left on a power play, off an assist from Dougherty.

Dougherty increased the lead to 5-3 with a goal at 6:01 of the fourth quarter.

Blast goalkeeper Scott Hileman had 17 saves before being pulled for a sixth attacker with 3:24 left. The Blast had a 43-33 edge in shots.

Victor Nogueira set a season-high with 24 saves for San Diego.

"We played well. We did what we were supposed to do," Blast coach Tim Wittman said. "But we couldn't finish, and that's the name of the game. Victor was the difference."

Dougherty, making a midseason comeback with the Sockers, marked the 1,000th game of his MISL career.

"I'm happy for Paul, but not that he did so well against us," said Wittman, who was a teammate of Dougherty's during an earlier stint in San Diego.

It was the second loss in a row for the Blast, which failed to rebound from a 9-3 setback in Philadelphia, its most lopsided loss of the season a week earlier.

Blast 0 2 1 0 - 3

San Diego 1 1 2 1 - 5

First quarter - San Diego, Aristodemo (DaSilva), 1:14. Penalties-None. Second quarter-San Diego, Velasquez (Nogueira), 0:25; Blast, Celenza (Farias), 6:22; Blast, Farias (Wakefield), 13:16. Penalties-None. Third quarter-San Diego, Wright (unassisted), 2:14; Blast, Cabral (Tschantret), 9:24; San Diego, Bollella (Dougherty), 14:26. Penalties-Blast, Gilbert, tripping, 12:29; San Diego, Johnson, tripping, 14:47. Fourth quarter-San Diego, Dougherty (Sakuda), 6:01. Penalties-None. Shots on goal-Blast 7-10-13-13 43; San Diego 11-7-10-6 33. Power plays-Blast 0-for-1, San Diego 1-for-1. Goalkeepers-Blast, Hileman, 17 saves. San Diego, Nogueira, 24 saves. A-4,670.

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