Except for a five-minute stretch in the second half, the duel between the Columbus Crew and the San Jose Earthquakes was destined to be yet another scoreless draw on Rivalry Weekend. The most distant of “rivals”, San Jose made its first road trip of the season and survived to return to California with a point for their efforts. For Columbus, who was playing in its home opener, the result was a disappointment after early results offered a prime opportunity to consolidate position in the Eastern Conference standings.
San Jose had the run of play in the first 30 minutes, with Chris Wondolowski and Adam Jahn each denied goals off quality chances. Crew goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum swallowed up every shot the Earthquakes booted his way, and Columbus slowly started to press forward themselves as halftime neared. Former Crew keeper Jon Busch would be forced to make several solid saves of his own, and the two sides went to the locker room knotted at nil.
Once again the Earthquakes came out of the locker room and turned on the offense to start the second half. Again Gruenebaum was pressed into service, and again the keeper was game to every challenge. Against the run of play, the Crew nabbed the first score midway through the final period. Earning a corner kick, the Crew set up in the box as Federico Higuain whipped in the kick. At the far post, Glauber found a lane and dove to get a head on the ball. Busch could do little but stare as the shot found its way over the line.
Justin Morrow would ruin opening night for the home crowd, though. In an overlapping run with Ramiro Corrales, Morrow found space on the left side and drove on goal. Firing a blast from 18 yards, Morrow’s shot dipped under the crossbar into the upper right corner past Gruenebaum for the equalizer. Neither side could find another goal, though, and they would leave a point on the table as they split the difference in the standings.
For San Jose, which has seen a depleted front line struggle to find the goals that flowed so freely in 2011 and 2012, it was a lucky escape from Ohio. For Columbus, who had weathered every Earthquakes challenge to that point, the equalizer deflated their bid at a second win this season.
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES @ COLUMBUS CREW
March 16, 2013
- 68′ — CLB/Glauber (Federico Higuain)
- 73′ — SJ/Justin Morrow (Ramiro Corrales)
- CLB (4-4-1-1): Andy Gruenebaum; Tyson Wahl, Glauber, Chad Marshall, Josh Williams; Ben Speas (Justin Meram/76′), Agustin Viana (Tony Tchani/61′), Danny O’Rourke, Dominic Oduro (Ethan Finlay/63′); Federico Higuain; Jairo Arrieta
- SJ (4-4-2): Jon Busch; Justin Morrow, Jason Hernandez, Victor Bernardez, Ty Harden; Ramiro Corrales, Rafael Baca, Sam Cronin, Shea Salinas (Sam Garza/76′); Adam Jahn, Chris Wondolowski