QOBC Vol. 2 No. 6 September, 2022
Photo: @sjearthquakes on Instagram
Josh: So my 6-point commit didn’t come true, and even if they got six, they wouldn’t be back on the bubble - but there’s a lot to celebrate in these two weeks.
Matt: Both joy and pain on the pitch. SKC, after following up a heartbreaker in Austin with an inspiring win against the Timbers, protected their home pitch against the visiting Quakes. Even though the scoreline was SKC 1-0 San Jose and many of the stats were fairly even, Sporting took it to the Boys in Blue where it counted - Shots, Shots on Goal/Target, Corners. And the intangibles were largely against the Quakes.
Josh: I was hopeful for the Quakes chances against Sporting KC, but got nervous when I realized Nathan was on yellow card suspension; and my nerves were validated. It was a much more balanced game, with solid scoring attempts from Ebobisse and Espinoza. The one SKC goal was an unfortunate, but totally reasonable: clearance from Marie back to the other team in the 18-yard box. I’ll add a little bit of commentary to the radio team - thank you so much for providing the radio service, but when both teams are playing a “Tommy” and an “Espinoza” in their attacking halves, it can get really confusing when following along.
Matt: So interesting - we watched the same game, but our takeaways are fairly different. All right…I’ll allow it. In hindsight, SKC is still picking things up and putting things down, holding Galaxy to a draw on Saturday.
Josh: And somewhere in and around this game, we got to hear of more strength being hired and transferred into the San Jose defense. In addition to Rodrigues and Akapo, Peruvian Miguel Trauco joins the fresh & talented defensive line just as the last business window closes. So GM Leitch meant it when he said he was investing in the defensive side, I guess!
Matt: There was no question that the Quakes defense has sorely missed Calvo’s ability to intercept and quickly transition the momentum to offense. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what Akapo and Trauco bring to the pitch.
Josh: It does get me excited for 2023, but I wonder what 2022 would’ve looked like with the Coach change, the GM promotion, and some of this recruiting taking place earlier in the season.
Matt: I hear you. It took a while for the Quakes of November 2021 to get where they were, and it will take a little longer to get to where they’re going.
Josh: My quick summary of the Black & Blue welcoming Vancouver to PayPal Park - JT may be better than he’s ever been, Rodrigues already making a difference, and I’m glad to see Coach Covelo still tweaking the lineup to get the strongest players in the right spot at the right time. You have more details, though, I think.
Matt: Here's a list game events that got my attention:
0’ - Game begins, coaches look chill in their t-shirts and jeans. A heat advisory wardrobe agreement?
4’ - Cowell breaks ankles and sends a beautiful cross and assist to Ebobisse. A sign of Cowells’ increasing decision-making speed?
22’ - Marcinkowski makes a great save on cross-in attempted header
26 - Many times, one–on–one Quakes defense is more than a match for Vancouver offense. #11 on Vancouver can’t seem to play tonight without cross checking from behind. Tommy Thompson showing some early fire with the ref while not trying to fool the lip readers.
30’ - Marcinkowski knocks out the cross from the corner. Nice!
31’- Yellow due to flat out housecleaning tackle on Monteiro - does he lead the team in fouls received?
32’ - Monteiro receives a yellow, though no foot to leg or spike contact. Hmmm….
40’ - Vancouver showing general midfield problems.
43’ - Gauld yellow, Vancouver’s frustration creeping in.
46’ - Quakes kick off the second half just playing faster than Vancouver. They’ve needed to do it for a while, glad to see it tonight. Whitecaps are getting some chances, but nothing JT isn’t handling.
59’ - Even though 2-0, a little too soon to park the bus, Quakes. Careful!
59’ - And then the Whitecaps almost get one past JT, it goes wide right.
61’ - Great cross in by Espinoza, almost perfect header by Jeremy E!
68’ - JT totally handled that play, preventing a potential chaos in the box goal. The more he takes charge in the box the better.
70’ - I love the sub-in of Benji and Gregus, not a subbing downgrade. Strategy!
87’ - Great save by JT, then excellent distribution to create offensive momentum for the Quakes. Thought: Rodrigues doesn’t look like the new guy, playing well with the unit.
90’ - Put your cleat on, Whitecap!
91’ - Great play by Rodrigues. Defensive header that creates momentum for Quakes, who then…stall before reaching the final third.
94’ - WIN! THE QUAKES WIN! 3 POINTS FOR SAN JOSE!
Josh: I was unable to find out if he’s the most fouled-against, but it sure feels like opponents have decided that shutting down the Quakes means greco-roman wrestling Monteiro to the ground. While I appreciate that he’s a threat, I don’t think that’s how that’s supposed to work.
Before we look to the future, Kit Talk? What did your panel of experts think of the Kicks Against Cancer warmups? I liked them, even if I don’t think I could rock a goldenrod chessboard.
Matt: I think you coined it perfectly. While children with cancer have all of our hearts, my favorite jerseys remain the 2019 and 2021 jerseys. Twitter was used for good in the week leading up to this week’s Revs matches - people tweeted that they wanted to get the new jerseys for loved ones, and strangers on Twitter helped each other out. It was proof that most people are inherently good. The 2022 Kick Childhood Cancer jerseys are still available online in limited quantities - get them while you can!
Josh: I’m nervous about the Quakes on the road against Cincinnati, but maybe they’re on their heels, having played on Wednesday in a more important, in-conference match? Then again on the road against Colorado, and back home for hopefully some redemption against Dallas. Woof. Gonna be a hard 8 days.
Matt: Yes, they’re facing three VERY hungry teams in the next short stretch, only one of them in the friendly confines of PPP. They should come away with at least 3 points. 5 or more will be an athletic and moral victory. I’m still hopeful that the two new additions will settle in quickly and well. JT, with third most saves in MLS, is keeping this team in it and continuing to develop as a leader on the defense. Keep it up!
Josh: What else to say, but: Vamos SJ!
Quake-o-meter for Game 28 & 29 (Richter goes to 9, OURS goes to 10)
Final Score on the Quake-o-meter Richter Scale: 6.6/10
Current % chance of a San Jose/New England MLS Cup Final: 1% - NE’s on the line and anything is possible...