Photo by USA Today Sports Images
You couldn’t have blamed FC Dallas one bit if, after traveling from Texas to California following a grueling U.S. Open Cup semifinal loss to the Philadelphia Union, Oscar Pareja’s would have shown up at Buck Shaw Stadium tired and lethargic.
Instead of a tired FC Dallas, the San Jose Earthquakes ran into an inspired FC Dallas, which delivered their best performance of the season in a 5-0 blowout win on Saturday night.
Rookie forward Tesho Akindele continued his outstanding season, netting a hat-trick to lead the romp, while speedy Colombian Fabian Castillo continued his excellent form by contributing two goals and an assist.
The victory extended FC Dallas’ unbeaten streak to nine matches, and pulled them within two points of Seattle for second place in the West.
Castillo opened the scoring in the 30th minute after racing onto a loose ball and out-muscling San Jose’s Jason Hernandez before chipping Jon Busch to make the score 1-0.
Akindele made it 2-0 in the 43rd minute when he collected a ball 25 yards from goal, shook off a challenge from Victor Bernardez, and slipped a left-footed shot just inside the far post.
The Earthquakes looked poised to pull one back after Matias Perez Garcia drew a penalty just before halftime, but Chris Wondolowski blasted the penalty kick just over the crossbar.
Castillo helped make it 3-0 when he ran at the Earthquakes defense and sent a shot at Busch that the San Jose goalkeeper couldn’t keep his hands on. Akindele followed up the play and converted the loose ball.
Castillo made it 4-0 after racing onto a pass from Blas Perez and beating the San Jose defense yet again, slipping a low right-footed shot past Busch.
Akindele completed his hat-trick in the 86th minute be converting a saved Blas Perez header with a close-range blast.
The victory helped FC Dallas push their lead on the Los Angeles Galaxy for third place in the Western Conference to five points.