FRISCO (CBSDFW.COM) – FC Dallas (11-12-11, 44 points) lost its final match of the season, 2-1, to the San Jose Earthquakes today at Buck Shaw Stadium.
Dallas nearly came back from a two-goal deficit to tie the match in the dying minutes after defender Stephen Keel picked up his first goal of the season in the 90th minute. Ultimately, the seven saves made by Earthquakes goalkeeper David Bingham tilted the match in favor of San Jose.
But it was FC Dallas goalkeeper Chris Seitz that kept the match scoreless early. The California native came off his line to punch away a cross served into the area for forward Steven Lenhart. The save squashed what was the best chance of the first 12 minutes for San Jose after the Earthquakes came out with a lot of energy following the pregame ceremony honoring what was the final match for Earthquakes captain Ramiro Corrales. The home side’s wave of pressure subsided near the 13th minute and FC Dallas applied the majority of the offensive pressure for the next several minutes of the match.
FC Dallas’ first opportunity to go ahead in the first half came off a set piece, 35-yards from goal, in the 17th minute. Andrew Jacobson took the free kick, firing a hard shot into the wall of defenders. The rebound came to the feet of FC Dallas captain, Peter Luccin and the Frenchman chipped a perfect ball over the top of the Earthquakes back line to Kenny Cooper. Cooper slammed a hard, first-time shot that rattled off both posts before settling into the back of the net but the goal was disallowed after the assistant referee ruled that Cooper was in an offsides position.
The Earthquakes took a 1-0 lead in the 27th minute when midfielder Walter Martinez played a sharp pass in to the feet of Lenhart, who was making a diagonal run through the area. Seitz stepped up to protect the near post but instead of collecting the pass, the ball ran through Lenhart’s legs onto goal. Tracking Lenhart, rookie center back Walker Zimmerman did not have a chance to make a play on the ball and it rolled through the six-yard box and into the back of the net.
Michel tested Earthquakes goalkeeper David Bingham with a well-struck free kick to start the second half. Three minutes later in the 50th minute, Bingham was called upon again and made a goal-saving stop on FC Dallas’ leading scorer, Blas Perez. Once again, Luccin set up the chance with a 60-yard pass to Perez, who turned on his defender and volleyed a shot towards the far post but Bingham got enough of the shot to keep it out of the back of the net.
Against the run of play in the second half, the Earthquakes took a 2-0 lead in the 57th minute on a goal set up by the run of Shea Salinas. Salinas received a pass from Chris Wondolowski on the right flank, split a pair of FC Dallas defenders and found the feet of Lenhart. Lenahrt knocked a simple first-touch pass back to a trailing Wondolowski, who took a touch and fired a hard shot into the roof of the net.
Bingham was once again the story in the 78th minute when he made a kick save on Je-Vaughn Watson and a diving save on Perez’s shot from the top of the box.
But Keel finally put one by the San Jose goalkeeper just before the final whistle to ruin Bingham’s clean sheet. Perez created the chance after winning a loose ball on the right flank and lofting a pass into the six-yard box, where Keel rose above his marker to nod the ball into the far corner of the net.
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