SAN JOSE, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes came back to defeat Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2-1 in their Reserve League opener on Tuesday at the Nutrilite Training Facility thanks to a game winner from Matt Luzunaris.
The first half was a back and forth affair, with Vancouver drawing first blood in the 8th minute. New signing Camillo played the ball forward to Long Tan, who dropped a pass back to Gashi on the left side of the field. Gashi touched the ball forward and unleashed a thunderous strike from 30 yards that went into the corner of the goal, striking the crossbar before dropping into the net.
The first real chance for the Quakes came in the 15th minute through the feet of Anthony Ampaipitakwong. Steven Beitashour sprinted downfield on an overlapping run and sent a deep cross to the far post. Ampaipitakwong controlled the ball at the top of the area and attempted to curl a shot to the far post, which forced Joe Cannon to parry the ball away. Minutes later, Ampaipitakwong combined with Simon Dawkins in an effort that Dawkins sent wide of the goal.
An hour into the match, the Quakes combined for some great one-and two-touch soccer to create a chance. After stringing together a multitude of passes, Dawkins and Matt Luzunaris played a give-and-go with Dawkins’ final effort going over the crossbar.
San Jose equalized seven minutes into the second half. Anthony Ampaipitakwong played a corner kick into the box, which was nodded in by a Vancouver player. Ike Opara and Bobby Burling were in the neighborhood providing pressure to a group of Whitecaps near the 6-yard line.
The match winner came midway through the second half. Simon Dawkins played the ball wide to Ellis McLoughlin to start the sequence. McLoughlin then took the ball to the touchline and sent a cross in front of the goal face to an open Luzunaris, who then finished from close range to the far post.
San Jose’s reserve team will continue their season in two weeks with a home match against Seattle Sounders FC at home on April 3. Vancouver will have to wait until April 17 for its next Reserve League match, at home with Chivas USA.
San Jose Earthquakes (1-0-0) vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC (0-1-0)
March 22, 2011 – Nutrilite Training Facility
Scoring Summary: VAN--Gashi 1 (Tan 1, Camilo 1) 8; SJ—Own goal 52, Luzunaris 1 (McLoughlin 1, Dawkins 1) 64
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC – Joe Cannon, Wes Knight (Nizar Khalfan 55), Kevin Harmes, Bilal Duckett, Blake Wagner (La’Vere Corbin-Ong 72), Philippe Davies, Alexandre Morfaw, Jeb Brovsky, Bedri Gashi, Camilo Sanvezzo (Doudou Toure 67), Long Tan.
TOTAL SHOTS: 7; SHOTS ON GOAL: 4; FOULS: 9; OFFSIDE: 6; CORNER KICKS: 1; SAVES: Cannon 3; CAUTIONS: Brovsky 50; EJECTIONS: None.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES – Andrew Weber, Steven Beitashour, Ike Opara, Bobby Burling, Justin Morrow, Rafael Baca, Anthony Ampaipitakwong, Brad Ring, Ellis McLoughlin, Matt Luzunaris, Simon Dawkins (James Callinan 75).
TOTAL SHOTS: 12; SHOTS ON GOAL: 3; FOULS: 13; OFFSIDE: 3; CORNER KICKS: 9; SAVES: Weber 3; CAUTIONS: Luzunaris 20, Beitashour 53; EJECTIONS: None.