FRISCO, TX - MAY 1: Brek Shea #20 of FC Dallas is congratulated by teammates after scoring what would be the game winning goal against the Los Angeles Galaxy during the second half of a soccer game at Pizza Hut Park on May 1, 2011 in Frisco, Texas. FC Dallas won 2-1. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
On April 23, the season changed in a terrible way as David Ferreira broke his ankle ending his season just 6 games into it. FC Dallas would amazingly recover from a goal down to win that game without their leader, but they'd have to quickly figure out how to play without their talisman as an early season showdown with league leaders Los Angeles Galaxy loomed. Confidence can play such a huge part in the ebbs and flows of a season so a win in this game against the 1st place team would go a long way in proving to this team that they could still compete without the reigning league MVP.
Now if you're like me and you've been attending games for years, they can all seem to run together after awhile, but this one on May 1, 2011 will always have a spot in my memory. However, it wasn't just for game, but the bizarre events surrounding the game as a freak spring storm rolled through the area during the game bringing monsoon rains, temperatures dropping into the 50s with a stiff north wind and lightning that forced the game to be stopped with about ten minutes left, the only MLS game I've ever been to where that happened.
As for the game, it was a fairly tame first half, but things sprang to life in the second. Fabian Castillo netted a brilliant volley for his first ever MLS goal then sprinting over to the bench in a very cool tribute to David Ferreira. Landon Donovan equalized just five minutes later before a monsoon rolled in that would stop play for over an hour. I don't think I've ever seen rain that hard at Pizza Hut Park save for the Dallas Cup championship game this year and an Open Cup game against Charleston back in 2008.
After sticking it out in the cold, windy, rainy conditions for about an hour myself and the wife-to-be high tailed it for drier land. As I got home, I turned on TV just as the game was kicking off. We all know what happened next as Brek Shea hit a cross/shot that looped in over Donovan Ricketts in goal giving Dallas a vital 2-1 win and starting the rise of Shea into the MLS stratosphere.
The 2-1 win began a torrid hot streak for Dallas without David Ferreira that would last well into August. I think if you go back and ask the players what the biggest win of the season was, almost all of them would say the Galaxy game and for Brek Shea that could end up being the goal we all look back at as the true moment of him announcing his presence as a force in the league.
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