COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (AP) – Daniel Luduena scored in the 14th minute to send Santos Laguna to a 4-1 victory over the Colorado Rapids in a Group B match in the CONCACAF Champions League on Tuesday night.
Oribe Peralta, Carlos Darwin Quintero and Christian Suarez also scored for Santos Laguna (2-1-0). The club team from Mexico had a decided quickness advantage that set up numerous scoring chances.
Goalkeeper Oswaldo Sanchez was rarely tested by the defending MLS champions.
''We wanted to play our game which is a possession game,'' Santos Laguna interim coach Eduardo Reogis said. ''That created space on the field to generate chances and the result favored us.''
Brian Mullen scored for Colorado (1-1-1). The Rapids started Steward Ceus in goal, resting starting goalkeeper Matt Pickens.
''You have to give a lot of credit to Santos Laguana for playing very well,'' Colorado coach Gary Smith said. ''I don't think there was a lack of determination or energy on our part.''
''I think the biggest difference was their ability in front of the goal and their clinical finishing,'' Smith said.
Santos Laguna led 2-0 at the break, and it could have been worse.
Ceus turned aside several scoring chances, including one by Luduena in the fourth minute. Oribe Peralta brushed the top of the crossbar in the seventh minute and Juan Pablo Rodriguez's shot brushed the outside of the left post.
Luduena scored on an uncontested shot from 30 yards out. Ceus got both hands on the ball, but it escaped his grasp and dribbled across the goal line.
''It was favorable for us to get that first goal,'' Reogis said. ''We also had to make sure we didn't get too confident against a dangerous opponent.''
Peralta made it 2-0 in the 27th minute. Ivan Estrada broke free along the right wing, froze Ceus and sent the ball to Peralta, who lightly tapped it into the back netting.
uintero was stopped at short range by Ceus in the 30th and 34th minutes.
The Rapids were limited to one scoring chance in the first half. Sanchez made a diving save of Jeff Larentowicz's shot form the slot in the 42nd minute.
uintero made it 3-0 in the 64th minute. Quintero ran right past defender Drew Moor, juked Ceus to the ground and scored from just outside the crease.
The teams will play again on Oct. 19 in Mexico.
''We had trouble putting the ball on target,'' Colorado forward Omar Cummings said.