After putting together one of the best seasons in MLS history, Chris Wondolowski could be forgiven if the final goal he scored during this dream 2012 campaign was a penalty kick.
Though Steven Lenhart certainly appeared to embellish on his way to earning a valuable penalty, it isn’t likely to be remembered for long that a questionable call helped draw the penalty Wondolowski buried to give him a league record-tying 27th goal on the season. After a year that saw him lead San Jose to a dream season and Supporters Shield, it was tough to begrudge him a spot kick for a piece of immortality.
Bright Dike converted a penalty of his own to help the Timbers earn a 1-1 draw at Jeld-Wen Field, but the story of the night was Wondolowski, who ties the record held by Roy Lassiter since the inaugural MLS season of 1996.
Lassiter was on hand in Portland to witness Wondolowski tie his MLS goals record.
With the match scoreless in the 24th minute, Steven Lenhart drew the penalty after going to ground following a challenge from Timbers goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts. Lenhart appeared to sell the contact, and referee Mark Geiger bought it, pointing to the spot and setting up Wondolowski to make history.
Wondolowski obliged stroking his penalty into the low left corner of the net.
Dike worked hard to earn the equalizer for the Timbers, pouncing on a rebounded save of his own shot to beat Jon Busch in the 67th minute. The goal was Dike’s fifth of the season.
San Jose will now turn attention to the playoffs, where the Earthquakes will take on the winner of the Los Angeles Galaxy-Vancouver Whitecaps wild card game in the West semifinals.
Here are the match highlights: