RECAP: Earthquakes defeat Galaxy, now one point below playoff line

SAN JOSE, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes defeated the rival LA Galaxy 2-1 on Saturday night at Earthquakes Stadium, giving San Jose it’s second win over an LA team in the span of one week.

The Galaxy would break the deadlock in the fourth minute through Sebastian Lletget, but San Jose would find the equalizer moments before halftime. Marcos Lopez received a cross from Nick Lima and blasted his left-footed shot into the upper-right corner, marking the first MLS goal for the 20-year-old.

The Quakes took the lead in the 82nd minute when Andy Rios converted a penalty kick that was won by Shea Salinas.

The Earthquakes will now prepare to host Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Wednesday, Oct. 7, presented by Clover. Kickoff from Earthquakes Stadium is set for 7:30 p.m. PT and the match will be broadcast on NBC Sports California, KNBR 1050 and 1370 KZSF.

GAME NOTES

San Jose now holds a 4-6-5 record in the 2020 regular season. The win propels the team from 12th place in the Western Conference to ninth, just one point out of the eighth and final playoff spot.

The Quakes now hold a 5-2-2 record in their last nine meetings with the Galaxy.

San Jose used the same lineup in consecutive matches for just the third time this season.

The Earthquakes are one of four teams in MLS, and one of just two teams in the Western Conference, to win each of their last two matches.

The Quakes held LA to just one shot on target.

Defender Marcos Lopez scored the first goal of his MLS career.

Forward Andy Rios scored his third goal of the season and fourth of his MLS career. It also marked the first game-winning goal of his MLS career.

Midfielder Cristian Espinoza was credited with an assist on Lopez’s goal. It marked his seventh assist of the season and 20th of his MLS career. Espinoza’s seventh assist rank tied for third in MLS this season.

Defender Nick Lima was credited with an assist on Lopez’s goal. It marked his first assist of the season and sixth of his MLS career.

 

MLS Regular Season

San Jose Earthquakes 2 – 1 LA Galaxy

Oct. 3, 2020 – Earthquakes Stadium in San Jose, Calif.

Scoring Summary: LA – Sebastian Lletget (unassisted) 4; SJ – Marcos Lopez (Nick Lima, Cristian Espinoza) 42; SJ – Andy Rios (penalty) 82.

Misconduct Summary: LA – Nick DePuy (caution) 18; LA – Perry Kitchen (caution) 31; SJ – Carlos Fierro (caution) 45; LA – Jonathan Dos Santos (caution) 45+1; LA – Joe Corona (caution) 60; SJ – Jackson Yueill (caution) 63; SJ – JT Marcinkowski (caution) 90+4.

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES: JT Marcinkowski; Marcos Lopez, Tanner Beason, Florian Jungwirth, Nick Lima; Carlos Fierro (Shea Salinas 73), Judson (Luis Felipe 73), Jackson Yueill, Cristian Espinoza; Andy Rios, Chris Wondolowski (Cade Cowell 73).

Substitutes not used: Oswaldo Alanis, Gilbert Fuentes, Siad Haji, Paul Marie, Tommy Thompson, Daniel Vega.

SHOTS: 14, SHOTS ON GOAL: 6; SAVES: 0; FOULS: 13; CORNER KICKS: 3, OFFSIDES: 4.

LA GALAXY: David Bingham; Emiliano Insua (Diedie Traore 90), Daniel Steres, Nick DePuy, Rolf Feltscher; Perry Kitchen, Jonathan Dos Santos (Ethan Zubak 89), Joe Corona (Efrain Alvarez 66), Sebastian Lletget (Yony Gonzalez 72); Cristian Pavon, Javier Hernandez (Sacha Kljestan 89).

Substitutes not used: Giancarlo Gonzalez, Carlos Harvey, Jonathan Klinsmann.

SHOTS: 9; SHOTS ON GOAL: 1; SAVES: 4; FOULS: 14; CORNER KICKS: 4, OFFSIDES: 1.

 

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES HEAD COACH MATIAS ALMEYDA

On tonight’s win against LA Galaxy:

“Tonight, we felt joy. The players in these last two games have given a whole lot. They are believing more in themselves, and luckily after a long time we were able to train for one week straight. I think today we faced a very difficult opponent, the previous game as well, and we were able to be competitive and get the victory.”

On Marcos Lopez going to the Peru National Team:

“Marcos is a young player who in these moments has adapted himself to the league. Just like every youngster, he needed time. I think his participation, along with everyone else’s is equally good. Whenever a player plays for their national team, it’s always great for the club. Given that we will have one less player, we will try to get his teammates ready so they can perform the same way.”

On what these last two victories mean for San Jose:

“I think it’s important to train, to train every day. It’s important for the players to believe in themselves, like they have recently. And to know that when the players are united, when they are clear-minded, they are competitive. It’s always tough to play consistent games without many changes or rest; it becomes difficult. Being able to train for a full week, we were able to realize that it benefited us. Nonetheless, we always believed in what we were previously doing, and what we are currently doing—hence the result.”

 

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES DEFENDER NICK LIMA

On if he feels comfortable in the left back role when Marcos Lopez goes on int’l duty:

“I’ll play where I’m put and where the team needs me. It’s kind of been my role for the past couple years, so if it’s the left, it’s the left. I prefer the right, but it’s a time where 18 guys are going to have to step up and that includes myself.”

On what has fueled the recent positive results:

“I wouldn’t count it to one moment exactly. I count to a couple days leading up to the game and not playing the role of the victim. We went down to LAFC knowing that it was going to be a tough game, but we went and played freely. We emphasized that, and we emphasized work rates, just kind of the simple things that you can control. We made that front and center, and that we have a goal. At the time we had to solidify something that we’re all achieving. I think getting into a playoff spot is what that is right now, and we go out there each game with that goal in the back of our minds. We’re trying to get that.”

On his partnership with goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski:

“I actually played growing up with his older brother, and the first time I saw him, he was working on the sidelines. He does the same thing in the locker room every day since the time he came in when he was signed. He puts in the extra work. He has a good head on his shoulders, and he’s a great teammate. He’s a great locker room guy, great roommate, and he always gives his best. He’s shown that he’ll be ready. A couple years back, I think wasn’t the best of times. He got thrown into the fire, but he did well. He kept his composure. I think he learned a lot, and he stayed ready for now, an opportunity that has come again for him. He’s done phenomenal, and he’s a player that I think is going to go far, and he has a huge career in front of him.”

 

SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES DEFENDER MARCOS LOPEZ

On his first goal in MLS:

“For me, it means a lot because I’ve wanted it for a long time. I find it in a good time professionally, I’m still growing as a player, but I’m glad for my goal and happy for the team. I thank God for the opportunity and also the team for giving it their all.”

On being called up to the Peru National Team:

“As a footballer, we always want to be called up for the national team. It’s always something good, to represent your country. My performance in San Jose is good right now; it gives me tranquility and happiness and makes me look forward to the future. As a player, one feels happiness after performing well and having a positive run. However, I’m also happy for the entire team for our performance. Now that I’m taking off to play for Peru, I am happy that we were able to win these last two games. I’m looking forward to being ready to come back to San Jose.”

On what tonight’s victory means:

“Overall, we know that all derbies must be won. [Their] goal caught us by surprise, but we knew that by us controlling the game, we had many opportunities. That was reflected in a saved penalty on their end, but how we eventually kept fighting to create another chance, which led to the winning goal. We never give up and want to always move forward. Even if we’re down 2-0. I am happy about our recent run. We are overcoming our bad streak. We are fighting hard and this team has a lot to give to this league and to compete.”

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