Earthquakes Musings: Dangerous and defensive

Earthquakes Musings: Dangerous and defensive

Sept. 23, 2010

EARTHQUAKES PAGE

Joe Washington
CSNCalifornia.com

Well, were closing in on the end of September and the Earthquakes are proving to be a dangerous team to play against, and the main reason is their defense.

With 10 shutouts this season it is obvious the team has bought into the notion that if you dont give up a goal, you cant lose the game.

Whats amazing is the way they have withstood a ton of injuries without complaint or excuse making and found the people to step in and just get the job done. What is also great is how they have managed to bolster and improve their front line in the process.

Geovanni continues to impress and as he plays more and more with the team, his impact will likely improve. Add to the mix his ability and more importantly, his accuracy on free kicks and it looks like money well spent.

Chris Wondolowski continues to score important goal after important goal. He personifies how grit, determination and mental toughness can create success. When he scores, its not the highlight reel type of goal that gets nominated for Goal of the Week honors. It is generally the capper or completion of a beautiful run or service from a teammate that, oh, by the way, just won the game for the team. His game is about being relentless and being in the right place at the right time. From what I can tell, there is no prima donna in his game like you see with some forwards. My guess is there are plenty of players in the league who can match his speed, size and ball handling skills, but its his heart, determination and desire to win that separates him from the rest.

This week the boys head up to Toronto where there have been a ton of changes. TFC recently replaced their Coach (Prekki) and GM. They also ended a losing streak that had reached 6 matches in their first game under the new head coach. TFC is a difficult place to play for a number of reasons. They have amazing fans and sell out every game; they play on an artificial surface and they have former Earthquake Dewayne DeRosario. Their followers used to get especially riled up against San Jose because a couple of former Earthquakes became such when they refused to play for the club due to the artifical surface at their stadium.

Ronnie OBrien and Darrin Huckerby were both originally claimed by TFC but refused to report, forcing the team to move them. Now that both of those players are out of the picture, it is yet to be seen if that animosity will carry over.

Im not big on historical records of team versus team in the MLS because so much can change from one match to the next, let alone one year to another, but the clubs have tied in both of their matches in Toronto. Im not sure I have a reason why this match will end up any different but Im anxious to find out.

Go Quakes!

Joe Washington is the Live Events Producer for Comcast SportsNet Bay Area and a wannabe "Earthquakes Ultra."

Torres scores MLS-leading seventh goal, Dynamo shut out Earthquakes

Torres scores MLS-leading seventh goal, Dynamo shut out Earthquakes

BOX SCORE

HOUSTON — Erick Torres scored his MLS-leading seventh goal of the season and the Houston Dynamo beat the San Jose Earthquakes 2-0 on Saturday.

Torres opened the scoring in the ninth minute, converting from the penalty spot after Fatai Alashe conceded a penalty against Alex Lima. Alberth Elis tapped in a corner kick — Houston's first of the match — by Eric Alexander in the 72nd. Elis, a 21-year old designated player, has three goals in seven career MLS games.

It was the third game in eight days for San Jose (2-3-3), which is winless in its last six after opening the season with back-to-back victories.

Joe Willis had two saves for his first shutout this season. It was his second consecutive start after Tyler Deric started the first five matches for the Dynamo (4-2-1).

Houston is unbeaten, and all of its four wins have come, at home.

Earthquakes begin three-game road trip with draw vs Revolution

Earthquakes begin three-game road trip with draw vs Revolution

BOX SCORE

FOXBOROUGH, Mass.  — Cody Cropper had his second shutout of the season and the New England Revolution tied the San Jose Earthquakes 0-0 on a rainy Wednesday night.

New England (2-3-2) had its six-game home winning streak snapped. San Jose (2-2-3) ended a five-game road losing streak.

Cropper had a great reaction save of Fatai Alashe's redirection in the 66th minute. Cropper was moving to his right but extended his left leg to deny a near-post shot. Cropper also punched away Darwin Ceren's blast in the 88th minute.

San Jose goalkeeper David Bingham also had his second clean sheet of the season. He came out of his area to deny Diego Fagundez in the 26th minute. Fagundez had a nice give-and-go with Juan Agudelo in the 74th minute, but Fagundez's rolling shot was knocked wide by Bingham.

 

GAME SUMMARY

San Jose 0 0—0
New England 0 0—0

First half_None.

Second half_None.

Goalies_San Jose, David Bingham, Andrew Tarbell; New England, Cody Cropper, Brad Knighton.

Yellow Cards_Godoy, San Jose, 27th; Bingham, San Jose, 85th.

Referee_Hilario Grajeda.

___

Lineups

San Jose_David Bingham; Victor Bernardez, Shaun Francis, Nick Lima; Fatai Alashe, Anibal Godoy, Jahmir Hyka, Florian Jungwirth; Cordell Cato (Tommy Thompson, 69th), Danny Hoesen (Marcos Urena, 69th), Chris Wondolowski (Darwin Ceren, 83rd).

New England_Cody Cropper; Benjamin Angoua, Antonio Delamea Mlinar, Andrew Farrell, Chris Tierney; Scott Caldwell, Diego Fagundez, Daigo Kobayashi (Kei Kamara, 52nd), Lee Nguyen, Kelyn Rowe; Juan Agudelo (Xavier Kouassi, 78th).