Until the final ten minutes of ESPN’s Sunday-night game of the week, it appeared that the San Jose Earthquakes were on their way to a second straight home defeat to open their 2013 campaign. The New York Red Bulls, hoping to right their footing after allowing the Portland Timbers to come back from two goals down to force a draw last Sunday, were up for most of the match but ultimately flew home from California without a single point to show for their efforts.
Eric Alexander had put the visitors up a quarter-hour into the contest. Playing on the right side of midfield after the Red Bulls shifted from the 4-2-3-1 alignment into a flat 4-4-2 this week, Alexander found himself unmarked inside the penalty area as Thierry Henry sliced a cross in from the left wing. San Jose defender Jason Hernandez headed it away from Tim Cahill, but the ricochet fell to Alexander. All alone at the back post, the winger uncorked a volley that left Earthquakes goalkeeper Jon Busch helpless.
New York would maintain that slim lead through halftime and deep into the second half. But as San Jose continued to pressure Red Bulls keeper Luis Robles, the momentum shifted toward the home side and it seemed merely a matter of time before they would equalize.
That opportunity came in the 83rd minute, as MLS rookie Adam Jahn stole the show in the final ten minutes of play. Sam Cronin whipped in a cross, and Jahn — a 2013 Supplemental Draft pick out of Stanford — was able to stretch out his boot to redirect the ball past Robles for the late leveler.
The rookie continued to press forward, and a stoppage-time corner kick provided the opportunity for San Jose to steal the full three points in the table. Jahn rose into the air, meeting the corner and nodding it down. In the path of the ball was the upraised arm of New York defender Roy Miller. The referee signaled to the spot, and two-time defending MLS scoring king Chris Wondolowski converted the penalty kick. With moments to spare, the Earthquakes rumbled back from their early deficit thanks to a rookie from just up the road.
NEW YORK RED BULLS @ SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES
Buck Shaw Stadium
March 10, 2013
- 16′ — NY/Eric Alexander (unassisted)
- 83′ — SJ/Adam Jahn (Sam Cronin, Ramiro Corrales)
- 92′ — SJ/Chris Wondolowski (penalty kick)
- SJ (4-4-2): Jon Busch; Justin Morrow, Jason Hernandez, Victor Bernardez, Ty Harden; Ramiro Corrales, Sam Cronin, Rafael Baca (Adam Jahn/66′), Shea Salinas (Sam Garza/70′); Mike Fucito (Cordell Cato/77′), Chris Wondolowski
- NY (4-4-2): Luis Robles; Roy Miller (Armando Moreno/89′), Heath Pearce, Jamison Olave, Brandon Barklage; Jonathan Steele (Ruben Bover Izquierdo/69′), Dax McCarty, Tim Cahill, Eric Alexander (Kosuke Kimura/87′); Thierry Henry, Fabian Espindola