HARRISONBURG, Va., March 20, 2011 -- Former JMU men's soccer All-America CJ Sapong kicked off his Major League Soccer career in style, as he broke the MLS record for fastest goal by a rookie making his first start in a professional debut, in Sporting Kansas City's 3-2 win at Chivas USA in the season opener on Saturday.
Sapong, drafted in the first round of the MLS SuperDraft, took only one minute, 43 seconds to find the back of the net when he took advantage of a miscue by Chivas USA.
The 2010 Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year pounced on a mistake by Chivas USA defender Ben Zemanski and buried his shot past goalkeeper Zach Thornton to give Sporting Kansas City a 1-0 lead.
"It was dreamlike," Sapong said after the match. "At that moment, I was just floating. I couldn't think of anything to do but just run around and scream."
"Before the game we were talking about what the celebration was going to be when we score, what we were going to do, but when it happens that fast, it just all went by the wayside," Sapong told reporters. "It was a dream; all I could do was run and scream. It shows for me all the hard work has paid off, but at the same time it's a motivating tool to keep it up."
"The good thing is that the two new guys on the team, our first round draft pick in CJ - his debut, he scores and I think he had a monster game," Manager Peter Vermes said. "He was dangerous, had the ball a lot, he was just very good for us."
Sapong's goal was the quickest goal scored in franchise history and he became the fourth MLS player to score in the second minute of his career.