HOUSTON, Texas - The San Jose Earthquakes fell to the Houston Dynamo 3-2 on Saturday night at BBVA Compass Stadium. Quakes forward Chris Wondolowski scored his 143rd career MLS goal and is now just two shy of tying Landon Donovan's all-time record.
San Jose got off to a fast start against the Dynamo, who had just won the historic Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday. Wondolowski scored his ninth goal of the season in the 37th minute, converting a penalty kick drawn by Tommy Thompson. It marked his 67th career goal on the road, extending his MLS record.
San Jose scored a second goal just before halftime when midfielder Jackson Yueill's cross was redirected into his own net by Dynamo defender Alejandro Fuenmayor.
Houston rallied back with three goals in the second half, including the eventual game-winner by Romell Quioto in the 87th minute.
The Quakes' starting lineup featured four players 23-years-old or younger: midfielders Jackson Yueill (21), Luis Felipe (22) and Tommy Thompson (23), and defender Nick Lima (23).
The Quakes return home to take on the New York Red Bulls at Avaya Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 6 at 7:15 p.m. PT. The match will air on NBC Sports California, KNBR 1050 and 1370 KZSF.
MLS Regular Season
Houston Dynamo 3-2 San Jose Earthquakes
Sept. 29, 2018 - BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, Texas
Scoring Summary: SJ - Chris Wondolowski (penalty) 37; SJ - Alejandro Fuenmayor (own goal) 45; HOU - Mauro Manotas (Tomas Martinez) 56; HOU - Tomas Martinez (unassisted) 68; HOU - Romell Quioto (unassisted) 87.
Misconduct Summary: SJ - Guram Kashia (caution) 11; HOU - Tomas Martinez (caution) 52.
HOUSTON DYNAMO: Joe Willis; Kevin Garcia, A.J. DeLaGarza, Adam Lundqvist, Alejandro Fuenmayor (Adolfo Fuenmayor HT); Mauro Manotas, Memo Rodriguez (Romell Quioto HT); Juan Cabezas, Darwin Ceren, Tomas Martinez; Ronaldo Peña (Alberth Elis 63).
SHOTS: 19; SHOTS ON TARGET: 7; SAVES: 2; FOULS: 13; CORNER KICKS:12; OFFSIDES: 0.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES: Andrew Tarbell; Shea Salinas, Harold Cummings, Guram Kashia, Nick Lima; Luis Felipe (Florian Jungwirth 76); Magnus Eriksson (Danny Hoesen 82), Jackson Yueill, Vako, Tommy Thompson (Jahmir Hyka 59); Chris Wondolowski.
SHOTS: 8; SHOTS ON TARGET: 3; SAVES: 4; FOULS: 11; CORNER KICKS:3; OFFSIDES: 1.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES INTERIM HEAD COACH STEVE RALSTON
On the team's frustration:
"Frustration is a good word. I don't think we played great in the first half, but to find ourselves up 2-0 was nice. I told the guys, 'Listen, this has happened too much this season. We need to finish this game out. We can't just stay the same level, we have to raise our level of play.' And we didn't. Once they scored the first goal, we were mentally weak and we felt like this happened oh-so-many times to us and I don't think we have the courage to get out of it right now."
On the play of the young players, specifically Tommy Thompson and Jackson Yueill:
"Good. I don't want to single anybody out, but I thought both of those guys you just mentioned had pretty solid games."
On his message to the team going forward:
"It's a tough one. I sat with them and told them, 'It's not good enough. We know that. We have to be brave and we have to pick each other up and we have to do the little things better.' We'll see. We have three games. What do they want to make of it?"
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES FORWARD CHRIS WONDOLOWSKI
On whether it's more tangible now that he's two away from the record:
"Not really. It's just a number. It's good to get one, wish I could have gotten a couple more, but it is what it is."
On his near second goal, credited as an own goal:
"It was a great ball in by Jackson [Yueill], squared it across. I was there. Thought I would get a touch, but the defender came sliding in and got a touch as well."
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES MIDFIELDER TOMMY THOMPSON
On his performance:
"I think I was put in good positions by my teammates and I had some good opportunities to put their backline on their back foot. I'm just happy to be back healthy and do my best to help this team."
On the play that led to the penalty:
"I think it was Vako or Jackson [Yueill] that played me a great ball. I got isolated one-v-one, which is one of my biggest strengths and the guy took me down. I tried to keep my footing and I couldn't and I was happy anyway because I knew Wondo [Chris Wondolowski] would put it away."
On staying focused for the last three games:
"Yeah, it's been a difficult year. It's hard to deal with because I know our fans deserve more. They've been right there with us the entire year and they still come out to our games and they still watch on TV. This weighs heavy on me and this weighs heavy on the rest of the guys because the fans deserve more."