SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Apparently, San Jose Earthquakes rookie Adam Jahn is made for late-game heroics.
Jahn, San Jose’s first-round pick in this year’s Supplemental Draft, provided his second game-tying goal past the 90th minute, firing home from 13 yards to salvage a 1-1 draw for the Quakes against the Portland Timbers on Sunday.
Jahn’s goal helped sooth some of the headaches brought on for San Jose by the return of Timbers playmaker Diego Valeri from a one-game, concussion-induced absence. The Argentinean DP had put the Timbers up in the 58th minute, and it looked as though that would stand for a second consecutive 1-0 victory against San Jose, only for 84th-minute substitute Jahn to get the last word in
Jahn’s goalscoring sequence began with Steven Lenhart flicking on a long restart from goalkeeper Jon Busch. Jahn got a second head to the ball, and Nana Attakora did well to redirect the ball to the center of Portland’s box.
Chris Wondolowski gave a subtle touch to tee things up for Jahn, who went to his left to beat Donovan Ricketts cleanly.
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That neutralized the work of Valeri, who pounced on a deflected shot by teammate Ryan Johnson, pounding home a bouncing ball from 12 yards out.
That almost ruined the season debuts of Steven Beitashour (who started at right back) and Marvin Chavez (who took over on the right flank in the 60th minute) for San Jose (2-3-3). Even with Jahn’s work, the 2012 Supporters’ Shield winners are winless in their last four – and they’ve never beaten the Timbers in MLS play, dropping to 0-2-5 since Portland entered the league in 2011.
The Timbers (2-1-4) extended their unbeaten streak to five matches but undoubtedly will be disappointed not to have vaulted into second place in the Western Conference standings. Portland had been 2-0-0 when scoring first, including last weekend’s match against San Jose.
San Jose, who recorded only three shots on goal in Portland, had one inside of two minutes Sunday, with Wondolowski heading a pass to Lenhart. Lenhart turned smartly at 17 yards, and his left-footed strike required Ricketts to lunge against his own momentum to make the save.
Portland showed their 64.7-35.3 possession advantage last week wasn’t a fluke, holding the ball for significant stretches. The Timbers nearly made that pay off in the 14th minute. Darlington Nagbe threaded a pass to Valeri in the midst of San Jose’s defense. With both center backs collapsing on him, Valeri slid the ball to Ryan Johnson in the left channel, but Beitashour recovered in time to break up the play.
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Ricketts, who came in riding a shutout streak of 222 minutes, provided a superb stop in the 22nd minute to extend that run. Quakes midfielder Shea Salinas glommed onto a loose second ball off the head of Portland’s Mamadou Danso, and his square pass from a criminally unmarked Wondolowski on the right side of Portland’s box. Ricketts charged off his line and, with his right hand at full extension, barely deflected Wondolowski’s shot.
And though the Quakes started the second half brightly, Portland's goal forced San Jose’s hand with regards to Chavez, whose speed has been sorely missing this year on the Quakes’ flanks. Sam Garza followed shortly thereafter in the 69th minute.
Throwing men forward generated more chances for San Jose, but Lenhart's header flashed just wide of Ricketts' far post and Garza squandered a gift of a giveaway from Michael Harrington just outside the 18 with some sloppy dribbling.
Things all changed in stoppage time, however, as they so often do with San Jose.
Both teams are back in action next weekend, as the Timbers travel to Sporting Kansas City on Saturday while San Jose head south to face Chivas USA later that evening.
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Mamadou 'Futty' Danso||Big defender turned in another sterling performance against the Quakes, going toe-to-toe with the pesky Steven Lenhart and coming out on top|
|2||Donovan Ricketts||Did his part with four saves and a near-shutout, including two good stops in the first half with the score at 0-0|
|3||Nana Attakora||Continues to impress after his return from Finland and made some crucial defensive plays to keep the Quakes competitive|