Chris Wondolowski wrote his name into MLS lore in storybook fashion at rainy Avaya Stadium on Saturday, scoring four times to lead the San Jose Earthquakes to a resounding 4-1 victory over the Chicago Fire and break the league's career individual scoring record.
Making his first start in a month and a half, Wondo bagged his opener – it's also his first strike of 2019 – in trademark fashion, ghosting to the back post to knock home an inviting delivery from longtime teammate Shea Salinas. In doing so, the San Jose legend drew level with Landon Donovan, himself an ex-Quake, atop the all-time MLS scoring chart.
Wondo would need less than half an hour of game action to push ahead of Donovan for good. The Danville, California native was even more opportunistic on his second, tapping home from point-blank range after Fire goalkeeper David Ousted dropped a straightforward take right at his feet.
In the 74th minute the 36-year-old wowed the soaked home crowd with a blast into the top corner to notch a hat trick, then barely two minutes later he added a stunning fourth, again outwitting the Chicago back line to find space at the back post to sidefoot home a savvy feed from Jackson Yueill.
Aleksandar Katai's deflected tally provided some late consolation for the visitors, but this day belonged to Wondo and his mates.
- 21' – SJ – Chris Wondolowski | WATCH
- 48' – SJ – Chris Wondolowski | WATCH
- 74' – SJ – Chris Wondolowski | WATCH
- 76' – SJ – Chris Wondolowski | WATCH
- 83' – CHI – Aleksandar Katai | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: Did the record fall due to a vintage Wondo performance, or a woeful defensive showing from the Fire? Probably a bit of both, and the outcome puts Matias Almeyda's revitalized Earthquakes on cloud nine while bringing the Men in Red back to earth with a thump.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Though Wondolowski's third goal was the prettiest, the record-setting second was the one that sent shivers up the spines of viewers, with the humble goal king characteristically celebrating the moment of euphoria with his teammates:
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Do you really have to ask? It's Wondo's world.