SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Chris Wondolowski, goalless since May, scored twice Wednesday for the San Jose Earthquakes. Unfortunately for the Quakes, so did Vancouver’s Eric Hassli.
San Jose and Vancouver traded punches from their leading scorers in an entertaining 2-2 draw at Buck Shaw Stadium that ultimately will go down better for the Whitecaps (2-10-9), who came back twice to break a four-match losing streak and salvage a road point.
The Quakes (5-6-9), meanwhile, saw their winless streak extended to seven matches, although they did manage to avoid a sixth shutout in that stretch.
Wondolowski, who missed four June matches while playing for the US national team in the Gold Cup, scored in the third and 54th minutes for San Jose. Hassli responded in the 42nd and 61st minutes for Vancouver.
Both men now have eight goals, two behind league-leading Thierry Henry of the New York Red Bulls.
Fans were barely in their seats before Wondolowski snapped his scoreless streak at 511 minutes, converting from 10 yards against helpless former San Jose goalkeeper Joe Cannon.
Simon Dawkins sprung the 2010 Golden Boot winner with a nifty chip from 40 yards out over the Vancouver defense. Wondolowski, lurking at the top of the box, caught up to the ball in midflight, settled it with a reaching left foot, then fired with his left off the bounce to the far post.
The goal highlighted the makeshift nature of Vancouver’s back four. With left back Jordan Harvey suspended due to yellow-card accumulation and center back Alain Rochat missing just his third game of the year to attend the birth of daughter Solenn, the Whitecaps had to put Greg Janicki in the middle and convert midfielder Jeb Brovsky to left back.
Replays showed that Janicki kept Wondolowski onside as Dawkins launched his first career MLS assist.
San Jose had no such obstacles to fall back on by way of explaining Hassli’s equalizing goal. With fans at Buck Shaw still buzzing over the 42nd-minute substitution of Rafael Baca for Dawkins — who was stricken with a right hamstring strain — few paid much attention to a lead pass up the left wing from former Quakes midfielder Shea Salinas.
That all changed when Hassli used a well-timed run to sprint past San Jose’s defense, then circled behind the rolling ball and delivered a hammered shot from 11 yards. San Jose goalkeeper Jon Busch got a hand to the ball but couldn’t prevent it from going in.
Wondolowski put San Jose back on top when he knocked home a free header from the top of the Whitecaps’ six-yard box. Wondolowski shed Brovsky before rising to meet Jacob Peterson’s free kick from wide on the right wing.
Vancouver’s second goal was brought about entirely by Salinas, who beat Earthquakes defender Chris Leitch down the left wing and fired a low pass from the touch line to Hassli, lurking unmarked in the heart of San Jose’s defense. With Busch having come off his line to try and play Salinas, Hassli easily found the empty net.
Several chances at a late goal went by the boards. Steven Lenhart let a golden opportunity slip away in the 83rd minute when he shot wide right after finding himself alone at the edge of the penalty box with a ball that had been misplayed by Janicki. A minute later, Lenhart had another near miss when Cannon made a leaping deflection on his goal-bound header.
San Jose defender Bobby Burling made a sliding tackle to stop a breakaway by Camilo in the 86th.
Vancouver midfielder Gershon Koffie beat Busch with his 35-yard drive in the 89th minute, but it ricocheted off the crossbar.
San Jose almost got on the board in the second minute, when Peterson, making his home debut after last week’s acquisition from Toronto FC, fed a corner kick to 10 yards. Lenhart met the ball with malice, but the ball deflected off another player just in front of the net — it appeared to be Vancouver defender Jonathan Leathers, standing up San Jose’s Brad Ring — and crashed against the crossbar.
The Whitecaps inserted new Designated Player Mustapha Jarju right into the fire, starting him alongside Hassli in the front line. But Jarju had negligible impact before being replaced by Davide Chiumiento in the 57th minute.
San Jose next travel to Real Salt Lake on Saturday, while Vancouver next take the field on July 30, when they host the league-leading LA Galaxy.
SJ -- Chris Wondolowski 7 (Simon Dawkins 1, Steven Lenhart 3) 3
VAN -- Eric Hassli 7 (Shea Salinas 1) 42
SJ -- Chris Wondolowski 8 (Jacob Peterson 1) 54
VAN -- Eric Hassli 8 (Shea Salinas 2, Davide Chiumiento 8) 61
VAN -- Jeb Brovsky (caution; Tactical Foul) 40
SJ -- Brad Ring (caution; Reckless Foul) 45
SJ -- Chris Leitch (caution; Reckless Foul) 74
SJ -- Ramiro Corrales (caution; Dissent) 93+
Vancouver Whitecaps -- Joe Cannon, Jonathan Leathers, Michael Boxall, Greg Janicki, Jeb Brovsky, Shea Salinas, Gershon Koffie, Peter Vagenas, Camilo, Eric Hassli (Nizar Khalfan 81), Mustapha Jarju (Davide Chiumiento 57).
San Jose Earthquakes -- Jon Busch, Chris Leitch, Bobby Burling, Jason Hernandez, Ramiro Corrales, Jacob Peterson (Bobby Convey 66), Simon Dawkins (Rafael Baca 42), Brad Ring, Khari Stephenson (Scott Sealy 83), Chris Wondolowski, Steven Lenhart.
Referee: Paul Ward
Referee's Assistants: Darren Clark; Philippe Briere
4th Official: Tyler Ploeger
Time of Game: 1:53
Weather: Clear and 82 degrees