CARSON, Calif. – Chivas USA forward Erick “Cubo” Torres became the league’s all-time leading scorer among Mexican-born players on Saturday night, and he did so with style, displaying a rarely seen facet of his skill set that even had some of his teammates searching for appropriate adjectives following a 1-0 victory against Real Salt Lake.
The historic moment began when veteran defender Tony Lochhead made a run on the left flank and sent a hooking pass toward Torres, who was gliding to the far post.
What followed was magical.
“It was something out of nothing,” goalkeeper Dan Kennedy told reporters. “Tony whips in a good ball and it gets over the defender’s head, but everyone is still thinking [Torres] has got to take a touch.”
Taking a touch didn’t even cross the 21-year-old star’s mind, though. Torres might have been the only person inside StubHub Center thinking volley the whole way.
“I gave it a try,” Torres told reporters. “I saw the ball from Tony and took a chance.”
Those instances when Torres takes chances, works for scoring possibilities and explores scenarios have made Torres a big hit with Chivas USA ever since his arrival last summer from Mexican side C.D. Guadalajara. The club earlier this month announced a loan extension through the end of the season, and for good reason: the striker has tallied 17 goals in 30 games since joining MLS.
“Cubo is a player that wants to score and works hard every day to try to score,” head coach Wilmer Cabrera told reporters. “He loves to be around the goal. He tries all these possibilities and he’s been scoring a lot this year. It’s good for him and good motivation for the rest of the team to have him.”
With his latest masterpiece – his 10th of this season – Torres surpassed Mexican legend Cuauhtémoc Blanco, who netted 16 goals in 62 games over three years, on the MLS list.
Torres revealed that the accomplishment was a special moment in his career.
“It’s something that has me very happy and joyous inside,” Torres said. “I’m thrilled to be able to make history in the United States and in this league. Cuauhtémoc Blanco is an idol for me. He’s a player I grew up watching, so to surpass him in goals scored here is something I can’t even describe.”
Torres wasn’t the only one at a loss for words.
“For his age, it’s hard to believe what he can really come up with and pull off," Kennedy said.