SANTA CLARA, Calif. — San Jose Earthquakes rookie David Bingham is getting paid to stop goals. Tuesday night, in his professional debut, he scored one instead.
Bingham bounced home a third-minute goal from 90 yards out to spark San Jose’s 2-1 victory against English Premier League side West Bromwich Albion in a friendly at at Buck Shaw Stadium.
WATCH: Bingham's goal
Khari Stephenson scored from the suddenly pedestrian distance of 33 yards in the 45th minute to put San Jose up 2-0 at the half.
Jerome Thomas made a slaloming run through the heart of San Jose’s defense to get one back for West Brom in the 53rd minute, but the visitors were unable to conjure an equalizer in the first match of their 12-day United States tour.
Bingham, a former All-American from the University of California who was awarded to the Earthquakes in a weighted lottery after January’s MLS SuperDraft, scored after corralling an errant through pass from West Brom. The 21-year-old stepped up and unleashed a punt from the top of his own penalty box.
The ball took one large bounce over the head of new West Brom goalkeeper Boaz Myhill, who was staring directly into a setting sun without the benefit of a hat, and bounced once more before nestling in the open net.
It’s the third time an MLS goalkeeper has scored from his own half of the field in recent years. New York’s Danny Cepero scored from roughly 80 yards on a free kick against Columbus during a 2008 league match and Houston’s Tally Hall drove a kick off the ground from 80 yards straight into the net against Metapán in CONCACAF Champions League play in 2009.
Bingham, who was removed at the half as San Jose made wholesale changes, also had three saves, including an impressive one to turn aside an 18-yard blast from Thomas in the 20th minute.
Andrew Weber, the third-year ‘keeper who has been San Jose’s No. 2 this season in front of Bingham, came on at the half and made a couple of impressive stops to preserve the lead. Weber sprawled to his left to blot out a 15-yard drive from James Morrison in the 52nd minute, then made a sliding body block to deny Ishmael Miller in the 84th.
West Brom defender Steven Reid came up with a goal-saving challenge in the 55th minute, preventing Scott Sealy from getting a clean shot off Omar Jasseh’s low cross into the six-yard box.
With a win under their belts to boost their confidence, the Quakes will resume league play on Saturday, when they travel to Columbus to take on the Crew.
SJ -- David Bingham (unassisted) 3
SJ -- Khari Stephenson (Joey Gjertsen) 45
WBA -- Jerome Thomas (unassisted) 53
SJ -- Sam Cronin (caution; Reckless Tackle) 13
WBA -- Chris Brunt (caution; Reckless Tackle) 60
West Bromwich Albion FC -- Boaz Myhill, Steven Reid (Sam Mantom 82), Pablo Ibanez, Craig Dawson (Gareth McAuley 46), Marek Cech, Chris Brunt (Nicky Shorey 66), James Morrison (Chris Wood 82), Paul Scharner (George Thorne 46), Jerome Thomas (Billy Jones 65), Roman Bednar (Marc-Antoine Fortune 46), Peter Odemwingie (Ishmael Miller 70).
San Jose Earthquakes -- David Bingham (Andrew Weber 46), Tim Ward, Bobby Burling (Chris Leitch 46), Jason Hernandez (Brad Ring 46), Justin Morrow, Rafael Baca (Ramiro Corrales 61), Sam Cronin (Anthony Ampaipitakwong 46), Khari Stephenson (Simon Dawkins 46), Ellis McLoughlin (Omar Jasseh 46), Joey Gjertsen (Matt Luzunaris 46), Scott Sealy (Chris Wondolowski 60).
Substitutes Not Used: Ryan Johnson, Steven Lenhart.
Referee: Alejandro Mariscal
Referee's Assistants: Eduardo Mariscal; Apolinar Mariscal
4th Official: Maurizio Laudani
Weather: Clear and 70 degrees