Playing their lone MLS Reserve League match in the month of September, Vancouver Whitecaps FC reserves (2W-4L-2D) claimed their second win of the season after defeating San Jose Earthquakes reserves (3W-4L-1D) 1-0 at Swangard Stadium on Tuesday.
Omar Salgado's early strike proved the difference between these two Reserve League West Division rivals, with the 'Caps second string creating enough chances to win the post-Labour Day weekend clash by a more comfortable margin. "It was a good performance," said Whitecaps FC assistant coach Denis Hamlett. "Our guys came out and played for each other from the start. We created a bunch of chances, but it only took one to win the game. The guys wanted to come out today and show they were worthy of a first-team spot for the weekend trip to New York."
Hamlett included trialist Massih Wassey in his starting XI, as the Canadian international played on the left-hand side of midfield. San Jose's reserves - who were led by former Whitecaps FC and Canada defender Mark Watson - featured three former Toronto FC players in centre back Nana Attakora, as well as midfielders Sam Cronin and Jacob Peterson.
On a gorgeous midweek day in Burnaby, BC, it was Whitecaps FC reserves that took an 11th-minute lead through youngster Salgado. A fine through ball from fellow 2011 MLS SuperDraft pick Michael Nanchoff allowed the United States youth international to get in behind the San Jose backline and beat Earthquakes reserves goalkeeper David Bingham for a 1-0 Vancouver lead. It was Salgado's fourth Reserve League goal of the season.
Salgado proved a tricky customer for the San Jose backline, with the forward also hitting the top of the Earthquakes crossbar in the first half, while strike partner Long Tan and right fullback Jeb Brovsky also had chances for the Blue and White before the break. In contrast, it was a tame first-half performance from the Earthquakes reserves, with two strikes from Cronin the extent of the visitors' attacking efforts before halftime.
The second half saw Hamlett give 'Caps trialists Johnny Dunleavy and Omar Elmasri appearances off the substitutes' bench, while former Whitecaps FC player Mason Webb made a late substitute appearance for San Jose's second string.
Vancouver's reserves picked up from where they left off, creating numerous chances to extend their lead after the restart. Salgado had three efforts alone, while Wassey had a couple of chances coming off the left flank. Nanchoff, meanwhile, played his part in creating second-half opportunities for Philippe Davies and Alexandre Morfaw.
At the other end, 'Caps goalkeeper Jay Nolly looked assured in everything that came his way, as he earned the clean sheet for the home side. Again, there were few opportunities of note from the Earthquakes reserves, with Cronin and Josh Suggs shooting well off target during the second half.
Whitecaps FC reserves will take Tuesday's victory into their final two Reserve League matches next month. They host Portland Timbers reserves at Swangard Stadium on Monday, October 3, before concluding their schedule on Tuesday, October 18, against Chivas USA reserves in Southern California.
11' - VAN - Omar Salgado (Michael Nanchoff)
Shots: Vancouver 14 - San Jose 5
Shots on goal: Vancouver 6 - San Jose 1
Saves: Vancouver 1 - San Jose 4
Fouls: Vancouver 18 - San Jose 5
Offsides: Vancouver 6 - San Jose 1
Corners: Vancouver 3 - San Jose 3
25' - VAN - Michael Boxall
44' - VAN - Alexandre Morfaw
Vancouver Whitecaps FC reserves
18.Jay Nolly; 12.Jeb Brovsky, 14.Greg Janicki, 2.Michael Boxall, 26.Jordan Harvey (3.Bilal Duckett 45'); 27.Alexandre Morfaw (38.Omar Elmasri 86'), 15.Philippe Davies, 13.Michael Nanchoff, 33.Massih Wassey (34.Johnny Dunleavy 62'); 17.Omar Salgado (32.Caleb Clarke 76'), 23.Long Tan
Subs not used: 1.Joe Cannon
San Jose Earthquakes reserves
1.David Bingham; 33.Steven Beitashour, 27.Nana Attakora, 20.Tim Ward, 34.Josh Suggs; 11.Bobby Convey (25.Ellis McLoughlin 45'), 5.Brad Ring (35.Mason Webb 77'), 4.Sam Cronin, 19.Jacob Peterson; 7.Khari Stephenson, 10.Simon Dawkins (32.Matt Luzunaris 45')
Subs not used: 13.Andrew Weber