One could be forgiven for thinking that coming into Wednesday, that D.C. United would fight, yet ultimately drop their playoff game to the New England Revolution. But fight they did, en route to a 2-1 win on a rainy night at RFK that those who attended will remember with smiles on their faces.
And with that, some subjective ratings!
Bill Hamid - 9.5
I'm going to leave Matt Doyle's thoughts on Bill right here:
It took what will probably be a Goal of the Postseason Winner in Juan Agudelo to beat Bill. Tell me again why Jurgen Klinsmann still thinks that Will Yarbrough should still get looks at the 3rd/4th goalkeeper spot for the United States team?
Taylor Kemp - 6.5
For as much scorn as Kemp got, and it was deserved, he had his hands full Wednesday, first with Diego Fagundez, then later with Teal Bunbury. He had a moment or two where things got lost (and if Kelyn Rowe doesn't run into Bill Hamid, an early second goal would have been both a death knell and one that was on Kemp's watch). Second on the night in interceptions and clearances, but he is going to be a scab worth picking Sunday from whomever D.C. plays.
Steve Birnbaum - 6.5
His first start in just over a month and only led the team in interceptions and clearances. A shaky moment here and there, but had the most passes on the night, and at a 82% accuracy clip, availed himself well and might have earned his spot back.
Bobby Boswell - 6.5
Not completely sure what he did on Agudelo's goal, but decided to pay Agudelo back for it later with a foul that left Juan (and possibly other Revs players) fuming a bit afterwards. Had a little bit of everything defensively on the night, but wasn't his best game of the year by any means.
Sean Franklin - 6.5
Two shots, also tied with Kemp for second with two tackles, may (or may not) have gotten away with a handball late that would have given a penalty kick to the Revs. Thought he may have been hurting after taking an early first half tumble at the hands of Rowe, but was decent for the most part on the night otherwise.
Nick DeLeon - 8
Two key passes, a shot, and a secondary assist on the game-winner, and for the most part, ran all over the place on the night. Dude shouldn't have to buy a meal in town for the next couple of weeks on that pass alone, which he stepped up to claim.
Perry Kitchen - 7
Two key passes, accuracy was not shabby, spent lots of time marking Lee Nguyen between the goal lines and in (roughly) a 45 yard area. Hydrate, relax, do it again Sunday Perry.
Markus Halsti - 7
Passing was definitely an off-night for him (at 59%, he was the worst of any DC field player), but had three key passes (tied for the team lead), led the team in tackles with 5, and had 5 more clearances. He played in front of the backline as support, his long balls got caught in wind, but still managed a decent night.
Chris Pontius - 7
Scored the first goal, won a couple of aerials, and in his 18 touches, his passing wasn't bad, even had a key pass to boot. Hope the sub was more precautionary than anything, and I hope he does too for that matter.
Chris Rolfe - 7.5
Scored the game-winner, tied with Espindola for shots (5), led in shots on goal (3), though clanged that PK off the post that would have made things so much easier earlier in the second half. Nice night overall.
Fabian Espindola - 8
Assisted on both goals, almost put the game away with a chip over Bobby Shuttlesworth just before the non-handball call, tied with Rolfe in shots, also had three key passes. PLEASE don't do what Jermaine Jones did Fabi, not again.
Alvaro Saborio - 6.5
Came on for Pontius in the 54th, won an aerial, had a key pass, even back tracked a little late in the second half and had a tackle. I don't know Sabo's role come 2016, but he's certainly accepting of his role within this squad now, at the moment, which is a good thing.
Man of the Match:
Bill, though if we're picking field players, NDL gets that nod.