A long-awaited win on the road boosted Sporting KC in the playoff hunt Saturday night in San Jose.
A late corner kick goal from Kevin Ellis proved to be the winner in the 2-1 win for Sporting KC. A dragged-out, physical match eventually paid off for a Sporting KC team that created few clear-cut chances. The win represents the first away win for Sporting KC since April. It is only the third road win for Sporting this year.
Sporting took an early lead through a Dom Dwyer header, but it was canceled out a few minutes before halftime when a failed clearance allowed Simon Dawkins an easy tap-in. First-half injuries to Quincy Amarikwa and Jordan Stewart forced Earthquakes coach Dom Kinnear to use two subs in the first half.
Goalkeeper Tim Melia kept Sporting KC in the match with a number of big saves. The Earthquakes were on the front foot for most of the second half before Kevin Ellis’s winning goal in the 81st minute. Benny Feilhaber recorded the assist on the goal off a corner kick scramble.
Sporting KC jumped into fifth with the win, thanks to a Portland Timbers loss to the Houston Dynamo. The result creates distance from the Seattle Sounders, who holds two games in hand but are eight points behind Sporting and six behind the Timbers.
Sporting KC continues the road trip next weekend to face the hot New England Revolution. The Earthquakes also hit the road and face the Montreal Impact next.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Making several game-saving stops, Tim Melia turned in an outstanding performance in the historic away win. It was Sporting’s first win in San Jose since 2001.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Sporting KC found an incredibly valuable away win with this result. Kevin Ellis‘s late goal off a corner kick bought Sporting the win.
MATCH TO FORGET
It was a really quiet night from Chris Wondolowski. The Earthquakes had plenty of chances but failed to turn them into goals.