Galaxy 1, Whitecaps FC 0

Landon Donovan scored in the third minute and the Los Angeles

Galaxy held on to beat the Vancouver Whitecaps 1-0 Saturday night

for their fifth straight win.

Donovan got his fourth goal in the last three matches to help

the Galaxy (12-9-4) secure sole possession of second place in the

Western Conference.

Donovan scored after A.J. DeLaGarza’s pass hit Whitecaps central

defender Johnny Leveron and came to him. The Galaxy captain planted

a high shot in the left corner of the net over Whitecaps goalkeeper

David Ousted.

”It helps a lot when you’re on the road,” Donovan said of the

early goal. ”It puts your team in a really good position, and even

if they score a goal, you’re back where you started, so it’s a nice

way to start a game.

”We can play a little more cautiously and just worry about

defending and trying to counter – and it really played to our

advantage tonight.”

Donovan needs four more goals to become the all-time leading

scorer in MLS history.

Los Angeles goalkeeper Jaime Penedo recorded his first MLS

shutout in only his second career league appearance and third

overall with the Galaxy.

”It was a grind-out road victory, one that we haven’t had all

year, so it was good to get one,” Los Angeles coach Bruce Arena

said.

The Whitecaps (10-9-6) lost their second straight overall and

just their second at home this season.

”It was obviously a bad start, the worst start you could have

got, with the goal so early,” Whitecaps coach Martin Rennie said.

”That was disappointing.

”But after that, I thought that we played well. We got forward

and created a number of good chances.”

Usually prolific offensively at home, Vancouver struggled

against Los Angeles. Whitecaps striker Camilo, who entered the game

tied for the MLS scoring lead with 14 goals, began the game on the

bench due to a slight groin strain sustained last weekend against

Colorado, and stayed there throughout.

”So that was disappointing,” Rennie said. ”And, obviously, in

a game like that today that was really tight, a player like Camilo

is someone who could make a difference and could perhaps get us a

goal.”

It ended Camilo’s string of 17 consecutive starts in league

games dating to April 27.

Darren Mattocks, who recently returned from a knee injury that

required minor surgery, started in his place. It was the Jamaican

international’s first start since the last meeting between the

teams at Vancouver on May 11, when he scored. But he did not do

much this time, rarely touching the ball before he subbed out in

the second half.

The Whitecaps almost tied it in the 10th minute, but Gershon

Koffie’s shot from about 30 yards sailed wide of the right post.

Vancouver had another chance in the 15th minute, but Mattocks’ pass

to Kenny Miller inside the box inadvertently hit him in the hand,

nullifying the opportunity.

Los Angeles had a chance to increase its lead in the 25th

minute, but Keane’s shot off a throw-in went just over the

crossbar. The Irish international had another chance from just

outside Vancouver’s box after a giveaway about seven minutes later,

but his left-footed shot went just wide of the right post.