Wondolowski leads Quakes past Revolution


Wondolowski leads Quakes past Revolution

The Earthquakes may be out of playoff contention, but Chris Wondolowski is making sure his team doesnt go unnoticed. The Danville native scored his 13th and 14th goals of the season in the Earthquakes 2-1 road win against the New England Revolution to move into a tie for first place in his quest to capture a second straight the MLS Golden Boot, awarded to the leagues top scorer. Hopefully I can pull it out, Wondolowski said of his chase for the Goldent Boot. I know Dwayne (De Rosario) still has a bunch of games left, Thierry (Henry) also has, I think Im going to have to do some work in the next two games, but its just nice to get a win. Wondolowski is tied with New Yorks French star Thierry Henry and former Earthquake Dwayne De Rosario at the top of the MLS scoring charts. However, De Rosario is the clear favorite to claim the title by virtue of the fact that his D.C. United team plays twice as many games as San Jose and New York (though De Rosario is unlikely to play at least one). Furthermore, any tie would be broken by the number of assists accrued, and De Rosario comfortably leads that category with 12, compared to Henrys four and Wondolowskis three.

Backing Wondolowskis effort against New England were assists from Sam Cronin, and surprisingly enough, rookie goalkeeper David Bingham, making his MLS debut. Bingham set up the first goal with a booming ball up field, not unlike the goal he scored in an exhibition match earlier this season. They didnt know I could put it over the top, Bingham said. Wondo was in and he took a phenomenal touch and just did the rest. Indeed, Wondolowski took the ball down over his shoulder with the softest of touches and finished from a tight angle to open the scoring in the eighth minute. However, the Earthquakes didnt have the easiest of times following the goal, often finding themselves starved of chances. Wondolowski had a long-range effort sail just wide less than 10 minutes after his opener, but other than that, the team was unable to test Bobby Shuttleworth in the first half. It wasnt as dominant tonight as it has been in other games, but I thought the football we played was quite nice at times in a tough place to come, Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop said. (New England) is a tough place to come: theyre good. It looked like the same old story would unfold, as the Earthquakes were unable to corral a free kick played into the box by Revolution midfielder Chris Tierney. After taking a couple deflections, Revolution forward Milton Caraglio looped a header onto the cross bar, which Benny Feilhaber was able to volley home in midair. The goal looked to be another setback for a team that has had a notoriously difficult time holding onto a lead in 2011. It was the 13th time the Earthquakes had given away a lead and it looked set to extend the teams record when scoring first to an unenviable 5-3-6. Wondolowski and his teammates had other ideas, though, and in the 82nd minute, the Earthquakes had their winner. We go up. We get scored on - which has happened a lot to us - and then we come back and get the winner, Yallop said. I was very happy with that type of spirit tonight from our guys. Simon Dawkins moved into a slightly more central position played a weighted ball right into the path of Sam Cronin, who served up a chipped cross to the far post. Wondolowski came crashing in ahead of the New England defenders to tally his 14th goal of the season. Great movement, good ball, great finish, Yallop said of the goal. All of the things we ask them to do. Its easier on paper, but actually doing them in a physical game is the part that the players are doing. While Wondolowskis pursuit of another scoring title will take most of the headlines, the forward was more than happy to praise his teammates for their work in setting up the goal. Simon (Dawkins) connected a great pass to Sam (Cronin) and Sam just put it on a platter for me, so thats a great goal, Wondolowski explained. Didnt have a lot of room, but I wasnt that far out so just the main part was getting on top of it and making sure I put it over. For his part, Yallop was especially pleased that after plenty of hard work and tough breaks, the team had come away with a win, just its second since June and its third away win in 16 attempts to date. I think performance-wise weve played pretty well for the last three or four months, to be honest, just without getting those points, he said. Its nice to finally have something to show for a decent away performance.Finally, Yallop maintained that his star forward could very well be the one to claim the scoring title, and with four goals from his last three games it would be difficult to argue Wondolowski doesnt have a shot. Hes top goal scorer again, right now as we speak, Yallop said. It looks like hes probably got a couple more before the end of the season, hopefully. For more Earthquakes, MLS and world soccer chatter, you can follow Nick Rosano on Twitter: @nicholasrosano

Quakes complete MLS Superdraft with local talent; announce two signings


Quakes complete MLS Superdraft with local talent; announce two signings

The San Jose Earthquakes completed their participation in the 2017 MLS Superdraft with a nod to local soccer talent.

A couple of days after selecting a pair of midfielders in rounds one and two, the Quakes chose winger Christian Thierjung from the University of California with their third-round selection.

Thierjung joins Nick Lima, San Jose’s second-ever homegrown signing, as offseason moves that involve Golden Bears.

Thierjung, 22, goes to the Quakes after four seasons at Cal, where he appeared in 73 games, tallying 27 goals and seven assists.

As a senior, Thierjung was named First-Team All-Pac-12, Third Team All-Far West Region and Second-Team Academic All-Pac-12. He was selected First-Team All-Pac-12 and Second-Team All-Far West Region in 2015.

Thierjung also played for the Quakes' PDL affiliate Burlingame Dragons FC during the 2016 season, tallying two goals in five total appearances.

With their fourth-round selection, the Quakes took Auden Schilder, the 22-year-old goalkeeper from the University of Washington.

Schilder was selected Second Team All-Pac-12 Conference and Second Team All-Far West Region in 2016 after surrendering just 18 goals in 20 appearances and posting five shutouts.

During rounds one and two, the Quakes selected Generation Adidas midfielder Jackson Yueill with the No. 6 overall selection and University of South Florida midfielder Lindo Mfeka.

Also making local soccer news, Thierjung’s teammate on Burlingame Dragons FC, three-year captain Joshua Smith, was selected in the fourth round by the New England Revolution. Smith also captained the University of San Francisco.

On Tuesday, San Jose announced the signings of Marvell Wynne and Tommy Thompson. Per league rules, terms of the deals were not disclosed.

Thompson, 21, became the Earthquakes' first-ever homegrown player signing in 2014, following one season at Indiana University where he was named the Big Ten Conference Freshman of the Year. He’s yet to score a point in an MLS match.

Wynne has appeared in 301 games during his 11-year MLS career, recording two goals and 21 assists. He was an invaluable member of a Quakes team that was hit hard by injuries in 2016.

Wynne helped the Colorado Rapids win MLS Cup in 2010. He has also represented the United States National Team and was a starter during the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

Day 1 of MLS 2017 Superdraft: Quakes take pair of midfielders

Day 1 of MLS 2017 Superdraft: Quakes take pair of midfielders

The San Jose Earthquakes began their 2017 draft by taking a UCLA Bruin. And if he pans out to play anything like the player he emulates his game around, the Quakes might have themselves a true superstar. 

Jackson Yueill, a midfielder, was selected by the Quakes with the sixth pick in the 2017 Superdraft. Yueill, who models his game around FC Barcelona and Spanish National Team legend Andres Iniesta, is a Generation Adidas Signing for the Earthquakes.

"I'm super excited," Yueill said. "I love the west coast. I'm excited to move to San Jose. It's a really good environment with the team and the fans. I've heard great things. I'm excited to try and bring another cup to San Jose." 

The UCLA product played in 40 games during his college career, scoring nine goals and notching 17 assists during those contests. His 11 assists in 2016 led the Pac-12. 

Considered a high-upside player, Yueill joins the Quakes in what already is a pretyt stacked midfield. "I see myself as an 8," Yueill said of his fit in the MLS game. "A box-to-box midfielder who can get into the attacking zone and create goal scoring opportunities." 

Yueill was named to back-to-back NSCAA First Team All-Far West Region and First Team All-Pacific 12 Conference teams. He has represented the United States on the U-20 team.

As a member of Generation Adidas, Yueill's salary will not count against salary cap. 

"I'm a player that loves to learn," Yueill said. "It's always great to come to a team where the coach believes in you."

With the 28th pick of the draft, the Earthquakes selected another midfielder -- Lindo Mfeka of the University of South Florida. 

A four-year player with the Bulls, Mfeka scored 16 goals and notched 18 assists in his college career. 

Mfeka is a two-time First Team member of the All-American Athletic Conference. He was born in Durban, South Africa.

Day 2 of the MLS Superdraft will happen via conference call next Tuesday. The Quakes have two picks remaining -- the 50th and 72nd overall selections. 

Rounding out local Superdraft News: Two members of the Quakes' Premier Development League affiliate, Burlingame Dragons FC, were selected in Day 1. Brian Nana-Sinkam (Stanford) was selected by the MLS-champion Seattle Sounders and Brian Wright (Vermont) went to the New England Revolution.