» 11.18.03 - EARTHQUAKES BELIEVE IN RUN TO MLS CUP:
SAN JOSE, CA (November 18, 2003) - For the past two San Jose Earthquakes playoff games at Spartan Stadium, there has been a small banner hanging from the north bleachers behind the goal, reading simply: “We Believe.”
It has become the theme to the Quakes dynamic and dramatic rush through the post-season, as the San Jose players and coaches have taken that mantra to heart in coming back from what seemed like overwhelming odds in two straight playoff games.
“I saw that sign down at the end that said ‘We Believe In You’,” Earthquakes defender Troy Dayak said. “That kept me going.”
Throughout the Earthquakes dominating regular season, in which they led the Western Conference for all but one week of the regular season, it did not appear that they would need such inspiration to make another appearance in the MLS Cup Championship game. But, after a 0-2-2 end to the regular season that saw them score just one goal in those games, the Quakes were suddenly looking vulnerable.
San Jose opened the playoffs with a 2-0 loss to the Los Angeles Galaxy in the first game of the home-and-home total goal Western Conference Semifinals, and then found themselves trailing 4-0 with just over 70 minutes remaining in the game on Nov. 9. Despite the deficit, the Quakes responded by reeling off five straight goals to win the series 5-4 in overtime.
In the Western Conference Championship match against Kansas City on Nov. 15, the Earthquakes were once again forced to rally twice from behind. The Quakes finally forced overtime on Brian Mullan’s goal in the 83rd minute and then won the game on Landon Donovan’s overtime-golden goal; just three minutes before the game would have gone to penalty kicks.
In the wild on-field victory celebration commemorating the Quakes second straight golden goal victory, San Jose captain Jeff Agoos addressed the over 16,000 wild fans at rocking Spartan Stadium.
“For the past two games, we have seen that sign there that says ‘We Believe’,” Agoos said. “When we have gotten down we have never given up, because we do believe and we know that you all believe in us.”
After Saturday night’s rousing champagne soaked revelry in the locker room following the game, the Earthquakes got right back to work on Monday morning with a brief training session at West Valley College.
“Saturday was the best feeling that I can ever imagine,” Earthquakes defender Craig Waibel said. “Hopefully this Sunday will be even better.”
The Quakes know that the Eastern Conference Champion Chicago Fire promote a large obstacle if San Jose is to win their second MLS Cup Championship in three seasons, but after exploding for eight goals in two pressure packed playoff contests, anything is possible.
“Chicago is a dangerous team,” Agoos said. “They have a lot of very good players and they are probably the best team in the league. We know that we are going to have to work hard to get that win.”
The Earthquakes capped their improbable win Saturday night with a triumphant victory lap around the stadium with the Western Conference Championship trophy. But, after two straight overtime matches, some of the Quakes were too exhausted to even celebrate.
“After I saw Landon put the ball in, he just took off,” said Earthquakes midfielder Ronnie Ekelund, who recorded the game-winning assist on the goal. “I couldn’t go after him to chase him. I said to myself, ‘Forget that.’ I could only stand there.”
“This has been an emotional two weeks,” Dayak said. “I’ve been shaking all over. I couldn’t even move after this game. I felt emotionally and physically drained. But we are relentless, I’m just real proud of these guys.”
The Quakes enjoyed a day off on Tuesday before convening for their final Bay Area practice of 2003 on Wednesday at West Valley College. The Earthquakes will travel to Los Angeles to begin preparations for the championship at The Home Depot Center on Thursday. Agoos, who suffered a bruised right foot against Kansas City was held out of Monday’s light training session, but for one of the few times this year, the Quakes injury list is surprising short. Arturo Alvarez has been upgraded to questionable with a groin strain.
“I think we will be okay for Sunday,” Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop said. “It has been an emotional, crazy couple of weeks, but we will be prepared. We have enough time to rest and heal, and I know that we will be ready. It is going to be an excellent game.”
» 11.18.03 - EARTHQUAKES MAN OF THE MATCH Q & A November 15: Can you comment on how it feels to be preparing for your second MLS Cup Championship game in three seasons?
Landon Donovan: “It is a great feeling, it is exciting and it is going to be a great week. This team has been through a lot, and I know that we are going to be ready on Sunday. Getting back to the Cup just really says so much about this team and the job that Frank [Yallop] and [Dominic Kinnear] have done. We have had a great season, and this team just keeps playing hard and working for each other all the time.”
Can you walk us through what happened on your game-winning goal?
LD: “Ronnie did well with the ball and headed it to me, and then I gave it back to him. That is one of those times when you have to take a chance. If I don’t get it, then I don’t get it, but I have to take the chance. The ball was unbelievable, the space was so tight, and my first touch was good. I had a lot of room and you can’t miss from there.”
What was it like to play in the Western Conference Championship at Spartan Stadium?
LD: “Like I said the other night, games like that are what you play for. You don’t play for the 30 regular season games, you play for games like that, when everyone is watching and the pressure is on.”
When the Earthquakes were trailing 2-1 in the later stages of the game, what was going through your mind?
LD: “I was concerned. Things didn’t seem to be going our way. We had some good opportunities and shots that we normally put away and we didn’t, so it didn’t look good. I thought that things might not work out and I was worried that our season was going to end – but then we came back…again.”
What are your thoughts about playing the Chicago Fire in the MLS Cup Championship on Sunday?
LD: “Chicago is a very good team. We know that it is going to be a tough game. Chicago has a lot of dangerous attacking players, and they are a strong defensive team. I think it is going to be an exciting game.”
» 11.18.03 - EARTHQUAKES WIN WESTERN CONFERENCE TITLE, ADVANCE TO MLS CUP ON DONOVAN'S OVERTIME GOAL:
SAN JOSE, CA (November 15, 2003) – The San Jose Earthquakes advanced to their second MLS Cup Final in three seasons on Landon Donovan’s goal in overtime to cap a thrilling 3-2 comeback victory over the Kansas City Wizards at Spartan Stadium. The Earthquakes will face the Eastern Conference Champion Chicago Fire in the MLS Cup Final on Sunday, Nov. 23 at 12:30 p.m. PT at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. The match will be broadcast live on ABC.
The Earthquakes earned another dramatic come from behind win to clinch the Western Conference trophy after trailing 2-1 with just seven minutes remaining in the game. Brian Mullan scored in the 83rd minute to force overtime, and then Donovan received a pass from Ronnie Ekelund in the Wizards penalty box in the 117th minute and beat Kansas City goalkeeper Tony Meola to give San Jose the 3-2 overtime victory.
San Jose began to attack after a slow start to the match and had several prime scoring chances as they pushed forward against the Wizards. San Jose defender Troy Dayak had the first good shot when his header in the 24th minute off a cross by Richard Mulrooney went just wide of the near post.
The Quakes had their best scoring opportunity of the first half in the 38th minute when Jamil Walker was able to run onto a deflected Mulrooney shot on the left side of the Kansas City penalty area. Walker crossed the ball into the middle of the box to an open Donovan, but his hard one-time blast went wide and to the left of the goal.
The Earthquakes started the second half applying offensive pressure on the Wizards, but Onstad was forced to make a difficult save in the 48th minute to end a Wizards threat. The Quakes goalkeeper charged out of his goal and slid into a wicked shot by Wolde Harris to block it away from danger.
Onstad was not able to get to Igor Simutenkov’s shot in the 57th minute, however, as he gave Kansas City a 1-0 lead after receiving a pass from Chris Klein behind the San Jose defense on the right side of the penalty box. An open Simutenkov gathered the ball and delivered a shot past Onstad for the 1-0 advantage.
Three minutes later the Quakes nearly evened the score when Walker received a pass from Donovan at the top of the penalty box. Walker beat his defender into the box and found himself alone with Meola, but his low shot skidded inches wide of the right post.
San Jose tied the game at 1-1 in the 61st minute on a goal from Manny Lagos. Troy Dayak made a run up the right side and passed the ball to Donovan. Donovan then touched the ball back to a streaking Dayak. Dayak sent a low cross into the middle of the penalty box that a sliding Lagos was able to get to and place to the left of a diving Meola to tie the game.
With the game tied, the Wizards then began to attack, forcing Onstad to make a terrific diving save in the 67th minute. Onstad laid out to his left and stopped a header by Jimmy Conrad on the goal line following a Preki corner kick. Preki’s corner found Conrad on the left post and he headed the ball down, but Onstad was able to dive and make the save.
The Wizards took back the lead in the 72nd minute when Klein ran onto a long ball played over the Quakes last line of defense by Preki. Klein controlled the ball on the left side of the box and cut back into the middle before launching a shot up and into the left corner over Onstad to give the Wizards a 2-1 lead.
The Earthquakes tied the game once again in the 83rd minute on Mullan’s goal. Second-half substitute Ian Russell beat his man on the left side of the field and fired a solid ball into the middle of the penalty area. Mullan was able to beat his defender to the ball and send a shot to the right of a sprawling Meola to send the game into overtime.
The overtime period was tight and action packed, with both teams applying pressure to tired defenses, and the game entered the second overtime still tied at 2-2. Second-half substitute Dwayne De Rosario almost ended the game in the 110th minute after he received a pass from Donovan as he ran into the penalty box. De Rosario maneuvered around his defender, but could not get a shot off before a diving Meola made the save.
Seven minutes later, Donovan sent the Quakes to the MLS Cup with a Golden Goal in the 117th minute. Donovan sent a pass to Ronnie Ekelund near the top of the Wizards penalty area, and Ekelund immediately fired a pass back to the streaking forward who had a step on his defender. Donovan received the pass and powered a shot past Meola at the near post to win the game and put the Earthquakes into their second MLS Cup Final in three seasons.
The Earthquakes improved their playoff record to 5-1 at Spartan Stadium. The Quakes have outscored teams 17-6 in those games.
The Earthquakes will make their second trip to the MLS Cup in three years.
After Landon Donovan’s goal and assist tonight, he now has 21 points in 11 career playoff games.
Earthquakes defender Jeff Agoos will make his league-record sixth appearance in an MLS Cup.
Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop, on game: “If you ever want a guy in that position to have that chance to win it, it is Landon [Donovan]. I thought Kansas City did well, they were dangerous, but overall, we were the ones trying to push and get the goal all night.”
Yallop, on game: “It was a great team performance again. Whoever comes on, it doesn’t really matter. We really seem to have come together at the time that we need to. For us to get together as a group and to show what we are made of, it is great. We have pulled through in both games when we have needed to. I can’t say enough about those guys in there. They have an incredible spirit, an incredible will to win.”
Ronnie Ekelund, on crowd: “The crowd was the twelfth guy, for me it was like playing back in England the way the crowd picked us up.”
Landon Donovan, on game-winning goal: “A lot of stuff happened. Ronnie does well and gives it to me, I needed to take that chance; the ball was unbelievable. It was a tight gap to get it to me. My first touch was good and I had a lot of room, and you can’t miss from there. I’m on cloud nine right now.”
Jeff Agoos, on game: “We put everything into this game. We wouldn’t allow ourselves to give up, to put our head down and just be happy with the season we have had. We just made sure to give it everything we had and put everything on goal. We never give up."
» 11.10.03 - QUAKES ADVANCE TO WESTERN CONFERENCE FINAL WITH THRILLING 5-2 VICTORY OVER LOS ANGELES:
SAN JOSE, CA (November 9, 2003) – The Jose Earthquakes exploded into the Major League Soccer Western Conference Final with a thrilling 5-2 overtime victory over the Los Angeles Galaxy on Saturday night at Spartan Stadium on a Rodrigo Faria goal six minutes into overtime. Already entering the game trailing the home-and-home total goal series 2-0 following a two-goal loss in Los Angeles last Saturday, the Quakes found themselves facing a 4-0 aggregate goal deficit after the Galaxy scored twice in the first 13 minutes on Sunday.
The Earthquakes stormed back, scoring five straight goals, including the series-tying header in the final minute of regulation by Chris Roner before Faria provided the series-winer.
The Galaxy took a 1-0 lead and what seemed to be a commanding 3-0 aggregate goal lead in the series when CarlosnRuiz placed a header past San Jose goalkeeper Pat Onstad in the seventh minute. Ruiz got on the end of a Galaxy free kick from the left side, heading it down and to the left of a diving Onstad.
The Quakes fell into a deeper hole in the 13th minute when Alejandro Moreno broke free down the right sideline and sent a pass into the middle of the field to an on-rushing Peter Vagenas. Vagenas dribbled past the Quakes defense and into the box, where his shot beat Onstad to the right for a 2-0 lead and a 4-0 total goal lead in the series.
The Quakes got on the board in the 21st minute when Jeff Agoos buried a free kick from 20 yards in front of the Los Angeles goal. Following a Tyrone Marshall foul on Landon Donovan, Ronnie Ekelund tapped the ball forward to Agoos, who curled the ball around the Galaxy wall and into the upper left corner of the goal to cut the L.A. lead to 2-1.
Just two minutes later the Earthquakes nearly evened the match when Manny Lagos ran onto a ball that was popped over the Los Angeles defense by Donovan. Lagos got to the ball at the six-yard box and slid to make contact with it, but Kevin Hartman was able to make an incredible save, knocking the ball free with his foot.
The Quakes tied the game and drew to 4-2 on aggregate goals in the series in the 35th minute on a goal by Donovan. Donovan deflected a Galaxy free kick at midfield and Mulrooney picked up the loose ball and sent it over the defense. Jamil Walker was able to get to the ball first and slipped a pass forward to a sprinting Donovan before being taken down by Hartman, the last Galaxy defender. Donovan was able to reach the ball and send a shot into the open net to tie the game, 2-2.
The Quakes seized a 3-2 lead in the game and drew within 4-3 in the series on a powerful header by Walker in the 50th minute. Vagenas fouled Mulrooney at the right corner of the Galaxy penalty box, setting up a free kick. Mulrooney took a quick free kick, launching the ball into the middle of the L.A. six-yard box, where Walker elevated over the defense and headed the ball down and to the left of Hartman.
Onstad made two amazing saves in the 58th minute following a cross into the Quakes penalty box off a free kick by Hong Myung-Bo. Ruiz headed the ball toward the net, but Onstad dove to his left to block the ball. The rebound went to the Galaxy’s Danny Califf right in front of the net, but while Onstad was still on the ground he was able to knock the shot away.
Needing just one goal to even the total goal series, the Earthquakes continued to press forward and attack Los Angeles. San Jose was rewarded in the final minute of regulation when substitute Chris Roner, who had just entered the game a minute before, rose above the Galaxy defense in the six yard box and headed a perfect Richard Mulrooney cross from the right side down and into the goal. The goal put the Quakes ahead 4-2 in the game and evened the series on total goals, forcing overtime and sending the raucous crowd at Spartan Stadium into a frenzy.
The Quakes began the 30-minute golden goal overtime period effectively playing down a man, as captain Jeff Agoos could barely run as he suffered from back spasms.
Faria provided the series-winning goal just six minutes into the overtime period when substitute Ian Russell passed off to Donovan at midfield. Donovan carried the ball into the Galaxy end of the field before sending a perfect pass to an onrushing Faria on the right side of the L.A. penalty area. Faria controlled the ball, and buried a shot on the ground to the far post past a diving Hartman.
The Earthquakes now host the Kansas City Wizards in the Western Conference Final on Saturday, Nov. 15 at 7:00 p.m. PT at Spartan Stadium.
The Earthquakes came back from a 4-0 aggregate goal deficit to win the home-and-home series 5-4 after losing 2-0 to the Galaxy at The Home Depot Center on Nov. 1.
The Earthquakes improved to 4-1 in the MLS Cup Playoffs at Spartan Stadium. The Quakes have outscored opponents 13-4 in those games.
Jamil Walker earned his first career MLS start, scoring a goal and registering an assist in the process.
Earthquakes forward Rodrigo Faria scored his first goal in an Earthquakes uniform tonight, scoring in series-winning goal in the 96th minute.
Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop, on game: "That was probably the most amazing game that I have ever been involved with and the best MLS game I have ever seen. To come back from 4-0 down is just mind boggling."
Earthquakes forward Rodrigo Faria, on game: "Since I got here I have been wanting to score and I have had opportunities, but I have been struggling. I have kept working hard, because I felt that something special was coming, and tonight it did."
Faria, on goal: "It was something special. I just can’t describe the feeling. I came on just wanting to get the game-tying goal, and thank God that Chris [Roner] got that one. In overtime it looked like we were in trouble when Jeff [Agoos] went down, but as soon as I saw Ian [Russell] give the ball to Landon I made a run into the middle. I knew they were tired, and when I got the ball I just saw the far post open and knew I could get it past Kevin [Hartman]."
Landon Donovan, on crowd: "The crowd was phenomenal tonight. It was louder than I have ever heard, even louder than the World Cup games. I have never been a part of a game that exciting. I almost wish that I had bought a ticket for it and could watch it from the stands."
Jamil Walker, on goal: "The cross was right there for me. I just was able to get there and put my head on it. It was a perfect cross, and once we got the goals, we felt that we had the momentum."
» 10.28.03 - LATE JAMIL WALKER GOAL GIVES EARTHQUAKES 1-1 TIE IN REGULAR SEASON FINALE AGAINST GALAXY:
SAN JOSE, CA (October 25, 2003) - The San Jose Earthquakes ended the 2003 regular season with a 1-1 tie against the Los Angeles Galaxy Saturday night at Spartan Stadium. The Quakes (14-7-9) finished as the regular season Western Conference champions and with the highest point total (51) in club history. The Earthquakes will now play the Galaxy in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs, starting the home-and-home aggregate goal series on Saturday, Nov. 1 at The Home Depot Center in Los Angeles at 7:00 p.m. PT. That game will be broadcast on Talk 910 AM KNEW. The Quakes host their playoff game on Sunday, Nov. 9 at Spartan Stadium at 6:00 p.m. PT.
Facing the Galaxy for the second of what will be four straight matches, the Earthquakes rallied to tie the match on a goal by Jamil Walker in the 80th minute after Alejandro Moreno gave Los Angles the lead early in the second half.
With both teams starting the game looking to attack, San Jose’s Brian Mullan, playing as a defender for just the second time of his MLS career, was forced to save a goal in the 32nd minute when he raced to the opposite side of the Quakes penalty box and jumped in front of a hard shot by Arturo Torres.
The Quakes had an excellent chance to get on the board in the 37th minute when Ronnie Ekelund took a free kick at the left corner of the Galaxy penalty area. Ekelund blasted a shot through the Los Angeles wall, allowing Quakes midfielder Manny Lagos to reach the ball in the middle of the box. Lagos slipped as he struck the ball, however, and L.A. goalkeeper Kevin Hartman saved his shot.
Earthquakes goalkeeper Pat Onstad was forced to make a nice diving save of his own in the 45th minute when Carlos Ruiz received a long pass at the top of the Quakes 18-yard box and dished off to Torres on the left side. As Torres closed in on the ball, Onstad dove out and gathered up the ball to preserve the 0-0 tie.
The Galaxy broke the deadlock in the 56th minute on a goal by Moreno. Cobi Jones looped a cross from the right side over the Earthquakes defense, where Moreno was able to leap over his defender and head the ball past a diving Onstad for a 1-0 lead.
De Rosario nearly scored for the Quakes in the 59th minute when he gathered a pass from Manny Lagos about eight-yards in front of the Los Angeles net. De Rosario fought off two defenders and was able to get off a shot, but the ball rolled wide of the far post.
The Earthquakes tied the score at 1-1 in the 80th minute on second-half substitute Walker’s fourth goal of the season. The Quakes sent a long ball up-field to De Rosario at the top of the Galaxy 18-yard box. De Rosario flicked a header to Rodrigo Faria in the middle of the penalty area, who then touched a header down to an on-rushing Walker on the left side of the box. Walker fired a low, powerful shot that slipped under a diving Hartman to end the longest scoreless streak in club history at 402 minutes. With the goal, Walker tied Todd Dunivant for the all-time Earthquakes rookie scoring record with eight points.
The Quakes had two good opportunities to win the game early in overtime. Faria took a pass at the top of the Galaxy 18-yard box from Richard Mulrooney and blasted a shot that Hartman controlled. One minute later, Mulrooney placed a free kick from the right corner directly in front of the Galaxy net. An open Walker attempted to control the ball, but it ricocheted off his knee and Hartman was able to make the save to keep the game tied.
The Earthquakes and the Galaxy face off in the MLS Cup Playoffs on Saturday, Nov. 1 at 7:00 p.m. PT in Los Angeles at The Home Depot Center.
» 10.19.03 - WESTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPION EARTHQUAKES FALL TO GALAXY 3-0 AT HOME DEPOT CENTER:
CARSON, CA (October 18, 2003) – The San Jose Earthquakes dropped a 3-0 decision to the Los Angeles Galaxy Saturday night at The Home Depot Center in a preview of the first round of the MLS Cup Playoffs. The regular season Western Conference Champion Earthquakes and the Galaxy played the first of what will be four straight games against each other, with the Galaxy using two goals by Alejandro Moreno to come out on top in the first match.
The Earthquakes, who were forced to play the final 48 minutes tonight shorthanded due to Craig Waibel’s red card ejection, host Los Angeles in the regular season finale next Saturday at Spartan Stadium. The teams face off in the first round of the MLS Cup Playoffs starting Nov. 1 in Los Angeles. The Earthquakes host the home leg of the home-and-home aggregate goal series on Sunday, Nov. 9 at 6:00 p.m. PT.
Despite the loss, the night was notable for Earthquakes midfielder Richard Mulrooney, who became the club’s all-time leader in minutes played with 11,404, overtaking former defender John Doyle. Mulrooney also tied Doyle for first place on the Quakes all-time list with 132 games played.
The Earthquakes began the game pressuring Los Angeles throughout the opening five minutes, but the Galaxy scored first in the seventh minute on a goal by Moreno. Galaxy defender Hong Myung-Bo sent midfielder Mauricio Cienfuegos the ball on a short corner kick deep on the left side of the Quakes penalty area. Cienfuegos then fired a looping cross into the middle of the area where Moreno jumped over his defender and was able to head the ball past San Jose goalkeeper Pat Onstad for a 1-0 lead.
San Jose forward Rodrigo Faria had an early scoring opportunity in the 11th minute when Brian Mullan fired a good cross from the right side into the Galaxy penalty area. However, Faria’s header went just over the crossbar.
Onstad made a terrific save in the 18th minute, diving to his left to thwart a close range shot from Carlos Ruiz. Moreno moved the ball down the left side of the field on a quick Los Angeles counter attack and found Ruiz in the middle of the penalty area, but his low shot was blocked and then gobbled up by Onstad.
The Galaxy took a 2-0 lead in the 36th minute on Moreno’s second goal. Ruiz received a long pass on the right side of the field from defender Danny Califf and dribbled into the Earthquakes penalty box before firing a pass to Moreno, who was sandwiched between two Quakes defenders as he powered the ball past Onstad into the near post. Already down 2-0, the Earthquakes were dealt another blow in the 43rd minute when defender Craig Waibel was ejected following a tackle on Moreno deep in the Galaxy’s corner of the field.
Despite playing short-handed, the Quakes forced Los Angeles goalkeeper Kevin Hartman to make two tough saves early in the second half. Defender Todd Dunivant ripped a shot on goal from the left side of the penalty area in the 53rd minute and Dwayne De Rosario sent a sharp shot to the far post in the 56th minute that Hartman blocked out.
The Galaxy added to their lead in the 61st minute when they caught the Quakes defense in transition. With the short-handed Earthquakes rushing back to defend, Ruiz sent a cross to an open Simon Elliot just behind the defense. With Onstad charging toward him, Elliot fired a shot that the Quakes goalkeeper managed to deflect - but not stop from bouncing into the goal for a 3-0 Galaxy advantage.
The Earthquakes host the Los Angeles Galaxy next week on Saturday, Oct. 26 in the regular season final at Spartan Stadium at 7:00 p.m. PT. The first 5,000 fans receive a Milo magnet picture frame.
Richard Mulrooney became the Earthquakes all-time leader in minutes played in the 72nd minute, overtaking the previous leader, John Doyle. Mulrooney tied Doyle tonight for the most appearances ever in an Earthquakes uniform with 132
Earthquakes defender Craig Waibel was ejected in the 42nd minute, forcing San Jose to play the rest of the game with only ten men.
The Earthquakes allowed three goals in a game for the first time since July 2. San Jose has now allowed 16 goals on the road in 2003.
Earthquakes Head Coach Frank Yallop, on game: "If you can forget about the scoreline, I thought that we played pretty well. We had some chances, we had some opportunities that we just didn't quite get to tonight. They were charging hard and coming at us and gained some confidence with that early goal."
Frank Yallop, on playing Los Angeles three more times: "We would have loved to get this win, but now we have to think that it doesn't matter, we just need to go out and get a good result the next time we play them."
Frank Yallop, on game: "We are eager to play them again. I am proud of the effort out of all of the guys. We didn't give up, especially when we went a man down - but I didn't expect us to, that is who we are."
Ian Russell, on game: "It is disappointing that we lost tonight, we want to win every game, but we know that the one that really matters is the next time we come back here."
Todd Dunivant, on game: "I felt that we didn't play all that poorly. They played a very good game and were aggressive. It is a tough loss, but at the same time, we know that we are going to live to see another day, we know we are going to see them again real soon."
» 10.14.03 - EARTHQUAKES EARN 0-0 TIE ON THE ROAD AGAINST RAPIDS:
DENVER, CO (October 10, 2003) – The San Jose Earthquakes earned a 0-0 tie on the road against the Colorado Rapids at Invesco Field at Mile High. Jon Conway, making his third start of the season, recorded six saves to pick up his first shutout of the season as the Quakes reached the 50-point plateau for the first time in team history. With two games remaining in the season, San Jose is tied with the Chicago Fire for the top spot overall in Major League Soccer.
Conway made a sparkling save in the 13th minute to keep the match scoreless. Jeff Agoos turned the ball over in the backfield and Chris Carrieri broke in alone on Conway. Carrieri shot low to the far post but Conway pushed the ball past the post and out of bounds.
Conway again came up with a big saves in the 19th and 30th minutes. On the first opportunity, he punched out a hard shot by Kyle Beckerman from 18-yards out. 11 minutes later, John Spencer got behind the defense and shot low to the near post, but Conway slid to his right and made the save.
Ramiro Corrales had the first chance for the Quakes with 10 minutes remaining in the first half. Corrales played a ball to Landon Donovan, who quickly slipped a return pass through for Corrales. Corrales had only goalkeeper Scott Garlick to beat, but he shot wide to the near post.
Eight minutes into the second half Rodrigo Faria nearly scored his first goal in a San Jose uniform. After receiving a pass on the right wing, he maneuvered around Ritchie Kotschau and fired a low shot that went just wide of the far post.
Conway was again called on to make a strong save one minute after Faria's chance. Darryl Powell received a pass on the left side of the penalty box and had only Conway to beat. Powell moved in on goal and shot low, but Conway came out of his net and smothered the shot. Spencer went for the rebound and Conway knocked it away for a corner.
Donovan had a chance in the 64th minute off a long ball by Todd Dunivant. Dunivant sent a ball over the defense as Donovan made a run behind Robin Fraser. The 21-year old forward then one-timed a volley just over the goal.
In the 83rd minute, Conway preserved his shutout with a diving save on Carrieri, who had gotten in one-on-one with the Quakes goalkeeper. Carrieri received the ball to Conway's right and moved in on goal, before firing a shot. Conway burst off his line to cut off the angle and then blocked the shot and knocked it out of danger.
Two minutes into overtime, Corrales had a great chance that would have won the game for the Quakes. After picking up a turnover in midfield, Corrales moved past two defenders and fired a shot to the upper corner at the near post. Garlick, however, moved to his right and tipped the shot over the bar.
The Earthquakes finish the 2003 season with two straight matches against the Los Angeles Galaxy. They first travel to Los Angeles to take on the Galaxy at The Home Depot Center on Saturday, October 18 at 7:00 p.m. PT. The match will be broadcast live on Action 36 Cable 6 (KICU) and Talk 910 AM KNEW. The two teams then finish the season on Saturday, October 25 at 7:00 p.m. PT at Spartan Stadium.
» 10.07.03 - Donovan Named Honda Player of the Year:
San Jose (Tuesday, October 7, 2003) - San Jose Earthquakes and United States National Team forward Landon Donovan was named the 2003 Honda Player of the Year today in Los Angeles at the Beverly Hilton Hotel for his play with the U.S. National Team in 2003. Donovan becomes the first back-to-back winner, beating out national team teammates and fellow Major League Soccer stars Carlos Bocanegra and Brian McBride for the honor.
Donovan became the youngest player to ever win the award when he secured it in 2002 and is only the second two-time winner ever as he led the United States in scoring while appearing in the CONCACAF Gold Cup, the FIFA Confederations Cup and international exhibitions this year. Donovan ended 2003 with seven goals and five assists, including an incredible four-goal performance against Cuba on July 19 in the CONCACAF Gold Cup.
Donovan helped the U.S. to a third place finish in the Gold Cup and continued his strong international play this year that helped the United States to the quarterfinals of the FIFA World Cup in 2002. The 21-year old currently leads the Earthquakes with 30 points on 12 goals and six assists. Donovan has been a force throughout the season for the MLS leading Quakes and was named to the all-star team for the third straight season.
A total of 206 United States sports journalists voted, as Donovan earned 396 points to outdistance McBride (194 points) and Bocanegra (130 points). Previous winners are Earnie Stewart (2001), Claudio Reyna (2000), Kasey Keller (1999), Cobi Jones (1998), Eddie Pope (1997), Eric Wynalda (1996, 1992), Alexi Lalas (1995), Marcelo Balboa (1994), Thomas Dooley (1993) and Hugo Perez (1991).
Created in 1991 by Fútbol de Primera and sponsored by American Honda Motor Company Inc., the Honda Player of the Year is awarded annually to the best player on the U.S. national soccer team as chosen by the U.S. sports media. In order to be eligible, a player must have played in a minimum of three international matches with the U.S. national team during the year. The winner receives a new Honda Accord EX V-6 Sedan.
For more than a decade, Honda has supported soccer programs and played a part in the growth of this exciting sport in America. Honda's current support includes 13 years as a sponsor of the Honda Player of the Year and six years as a sponsor of the Honda Symposium, as well as eight years as the official Automotive Sponsor and Official Vehicle of MLS.
» 10.06.03 - EARTHQUAKES CLINCH WESTERN CONFERENCE TITLE DESPITE DROPPING 2-0 DECISION TO METROSTARS
SAN JOSE, CA (October 5, 2003) – The San Jose Earthquakes were defeated 2-0 by the MetroStars Sunday afternoon at Spartan Stadium. Despite the loss, the Quakes secured the first Western Conference championship in team history when the Colorado Rapids lost to the Kansas City Wizards on Saturday night. The MetroStars received a first-half goal from Amado Guevara and a late goal by Steve Jolley to down the Quakes and shut them out for the first time since July 12.
The MetroStars took the lead in the 30th minute on a goal from Guevara. Earthquakes defender Craig Waibel attempted to clear the ball following a Metros attack, but the ball was deflected to MetroStars midfielder Eddie Gaven in the center of the field about 24-yards away from the San Jose goal. Gaven sent a pass through the Earthquakes defense to an on-rushing Guevara on the left side of San Jose penalty box. Guevara fired a shot to the far corner past a diving Pat Onstad for the 1-0 lead.
Following the MetroStars goal, San Jose picked up the pace of the game and began to threaten offensively. In the 40th minute, the Quakes had a potential equalizing goal taken away following a foul called on Dwayne De Rosario. Earthquakes forward Landon Donovan dished a pass off to his left to De Rosario in the MetroStars penalty box. The ball got past Metros defender Chris Leitch, who fell down allowing De Rosario to gain possession, turn and send a shot past Metros goalkeeper Jonny Walker. De Rosario was whistled for taking down Leitch, however, and the goal was disallowed. The Quakes entered the halftime break trailing 1-0.
In the 52nd minute, San Jose attempted to tie the game on a soaring cross into the middle of the MetroStars penalty area by Brian Mullan. De Rosario elevated and connected on a solid header, but the ball missed wide to the right of the goal.
Onstad kept the Earthquakes deficit at one with a spectacular diving save in the 58th minute. Guevara found MetroStars forward Mike Magee on the right side of the Earthquakes penalty box with a short pass behind the Quakes defense. With only Onstad to beat, Magee attempted to send a shot to the far post, but the Quakes goalkeeper knocked the ball away on a full-extension dive.
As the Quakes pushed all of their players forward in an attempt to tie the game, the MetroStars cleared the ball and found Gaven open and streaking down the left side of the field on a breakaway. Gaven dribbled near the penalty area before passing it to an open John Wolyniec. Wolyneic’s shot from 10 yards away could not beat Onstad, however, as the goalkeeper dove and knocked the ball away. Waibel then cleared the ball out of play.
The MetroStars would score a minute later on the ensuing corner kick when Guevara sent a corner kick from the right side into the middle of the Quakes area. MetroStars defender Eddie Pope flicked the ball toward the far post with his head, where it bounced off Waibel’s back before the Metros Steve Jolley powered it into the net for a 2-0 lead.
The Quakes appeared to get a goal back following a Mullan cross late in the match, but the goal was again disallowed as Jamil Walker was determined to have touched the ball with his hand and past Jonny Walker.
The Earthquakes return to action on Friday, Oct. 10 when they travel to Colorado to take on the Rapids at 6:30 p.m. PT. The game will be broadcast live on Fox Sports Net and on KABL 910 AM.
The Earthquakes clinched the first Western Conference Championship in team history when the Colorado Rapids lost 4-2 to the Kansas City Wizards Saturday night.
Earthquakes forward Rodrigo Faria made his first appearance in an Earthquakes uniform when he entered as a substitute in the 76th minute.
Richard Mulrooney saw his three-game assist streak come to an end Sunday.
The Earthquakes lost to the MetroStars for the first time since April 25, 1998. The Quakes entered the game with a ten-game unbeaten streak against the Metros, the longest such streak in MLS history.
Quakes head coach Frank Yallop left the stadium immediately following the match. His wife Karen went into labor after the match and Yallop joined her at the hospital. The child will be the second for Yallop and his wife. Their first son Jack is four years old.
Assistant coach Dominic Kinnear, on game: "I felt that the team came out a little flat today. The team won the Western Conference with Colorado’s loss yesterday and that may have caused them to come out a little flat. However, the MetroStars had a good game plan and they cut off the passing lanes and did not allow us to get many good chances."
Kinnear, on MetroStars scoring first: "I think that by scoring first, they were able to bunker in and counterattack. We like to come out and score the first goal and force teams to open up their game, but the MetroStars got the first one, so they could play their game."
Dwayne De Rosario, on game: "Things just didn’t bounce our way today. It seems like everything went against us. It was a tough game to lose. We weren’t really able to play our game and the field was a bit bumpy, but they played well. Their defense is good."
Rodrigo Faria, on Earthquakes debut: "I feel like I am part of the team now. I have been working hard to get back into shape and it was great to get back into a game. I’m starting to feel good now, and I knew that I was going to have a chance to play today, because we had clinched the West and it was hot. I was expecting to play, and it meant a lot to play against the MetroStars. I just hope that next time we can get a better result."
Richard Mulrooney, on game: "Every game is a different situation, and they were desperate, they needed to win. You have to give them credit, they came in here and just beat us. Maybe we were not as motivated as we should have been or maybe some calls didn’t go our way, but in the end they did what they had to do and we didn’t."
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