FOXBOROUGH — Kelyn Rowe walked, stared, and cleansed.
He shrugged off leaping teammates, yelling toward the crowd behind the opponent’s goal and forcefully running both hands down his jersey.
Gone, finally, were eight losses and two-plus months of frustration, seemingly wiped away with Rowe’s celebration of his late goal that cemented the Revolution’s cathartic 3-0 win over the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday night at Gillette Stadium.
“I actually planned not to celebrate, just because we’ve lost so many games,” Rowe said after New England’s first win since May 24. “And the emotion was thrown at me.”
The win was the first in nine games for the Revolution (8-11-2), who have been plagued by missed chances, injuries, and defensive lapses during a losing streak that bounced them from the top of the Eastern Conference to sixth.
“We definitely felt the pressure building. Not only in games, but every day, every time we came in to training, we could feel the emotions,” said striker Charlie Davies. “And I think it was weighing on everybody.”
The burden was partially lifted when New England scored first because in every one of the previous eight losses, the Revolution had conceded the opening goal.
In the 10th minute, left back Kevin Alston threw the ball in along the left flank. Davies, a defender on his back, flicked a first-touch pass to midfielder Lee Nguyen, who was streaking into Colorado’s 18-yard box.
Nguyen, the Revolution’s leading scorer, took a touch, let the ball bounce across his body and the face of the goal, and turned a shot toward the left post. Rapids defender Drew Moor, running back toward the goal, attempted to block the shot but directed it into his own net.
Davies sprinted to the right touchline pumping his arms, urging his teammates to join. Nguyen soon found himself scooped up by Davies and began pointing at the smiling forward’s number, informing the crowd who deserved most praise for the goal.
“He really led the line well, held the ball, battled. He showed a ton of heart,” coach Jay Heaps said of Davies. “The guys, they like Charlie. You can see it. The guys like playing with Charlie. Charlie brings a great energy.”
The Revolution are now undefeated and untied when striking first (7-0-0).
In the 75th minute, referee Juan Guzman showed Rapids defender Thomas Piermayr his second yellow card of the match, sending him off, and Nguyen drove the ensuing free kick from outside the 18 into the top left corner. Nguyen then found the open man, Rowe, in the 78th minute, slipping him a through ball.
For his first goal of the season, Rowe ran at Colorado defender Chris Klute, then let it rip, the shot screaming into the top left corner. And the celebration began.Rob Harms can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.