In their final home match of the MLS Reserve League season, Vancouver Whitecaps FC reserves (3W-4L-2D) fell 2-1 to San Jose Earthquakes reserves (5W-2L-2D) on Monday.
Though Atiba Harris cancelled out San Jose trialist Matt Fondy’s opening goal in the first half at Thunderbird Stadium on the campus of the University of British Columbia, the Earthquakes reserves claimed the away win through a fortuitous winning goal from Jesus Morales in the second half.
“The result was disappointing,” Whitecaps FC assistant coach Carl Robinson told whitecapsfc.com. “I think we created a number of opportunities and got ourselves into very good scoring positions, but sadly, we didn’t manage to take them.”
Robinson gave recent acquisition Tiago Ulisses his first run-out in a Whitecaps FC uniform on Monday, with the Brazilian looking composed as a holding midfielder in the Vancouver second string’s 4-1-4-1 formation.
Led by former Whitecaps FC and Canadian international defender Mark Watson, San Jose reserves’ line-up included six members of the Earthquakes Academy. They took the lead on 10 minutes. Brian Burke’s cross from the right found an unmarked Fondy. His header flew past ‘Caps reserves goalkeeper Brian Sylvestre for a 1-0 San Jose lead.
The home side responded well, with Russell Teibert just missing the target before setting up Whitecaps FC’s equalizer on 21 minutes. The Canadian international slipped a ball through to Harris in the San Jose box before the big striker neatly chipped his finish past Earthquakes goalkeeper Evan Newton for 1-1.
While the Earthquakes reserves tested Sylvestre on a couple of occasions before the break, Harris and Michael Nanchoff had good chances for Vancouver before the halftime whistle.
The second half saw more action at both ends, plus more youngsters get a chance off the substitutes’ bench. Sylvestre made saves from San Jose’s Kris Clark and Josh Suggs, while Harris looked more of an attacking threat for the Blue and White.
The deciding goal came on 75 minutes, and in unfortunate circumstances. Sylvestre was unable to secure a loose ball in the Vancouver box and Morales took advantage to convert into an empty net for a 2-1 Earthquakes lead.
Whitecaps FC responded well again and were unlucky not to level matters for a second time in the match. The best of those chances nearly fell to Residency youngster Brody Huitema, who came on as a second-half substitute. Harris’ low cross to the Chilliwack, BC, native was just cut out in time by the visitors on 88 minutes.
Whitecaps FC reserves will conclude their Reserve League schedule on the road next month, as they visit LA Galaxy reserves in Southern California on Friday, October 12.
10’ - SJ - Matt Fondy (Brian Burke)
21’ - VAN - Atiba Harris (Russell Teibert)
75’ - SJ - Jesus Morales
Shots: Vancouver 12 - San Jose 13
Shots on goal: Vancouver 3 - San Jose 8
Saves: Vancouver 6 - San Jose 2
Fouls: Vancouver 12 - San Jose 8
Offsides: Vancouver 6 - San Jose 1
Corners: Vancouver 3 - San Jose 6
61’ - SJ - Elisama Padilla
65’ - VAN - Carlyle Mitchell
84’ - SJ - Irving Ventura
Vancouver Whitecaps FC reserves
24.Brian Sylvestre; 32.Greg Klazura, 19.Carlyle Mitchell, 4.Alain Rochat (2.Jackson Farmer* 45’), 30.Sam Adekugbe* (42.Sebastian Cabrera* 64’); 23.Tiago Ulisses; 13.Michael Nanchoff, 43.Jacob Lensky** (26.Brody Huitema* 72’), 16.Matt Watson, 31.Russell Teibert; 9.Atiba Harris
Substitutes not used: 1.Joe Cannon, 18.Brad Knighton
*Whitecaps FC Residency
San Jose Earthquakes reserves
13.Evan Newton; 2.Jacob Hustedt, 22.Irving Ventura*, 32.Josh Suggs, 43.Jordan Stewart**; 29.Jesus Morales* (23.Roberto Mendoza* 86’), 37.Kris Clark*, 34.Cristian Cruz*, 25.Brian Burke* (38.Johnny Knutsen* 82’); 35.Elisama Padilla*, 36.Matt Fondy**
Substitutes not used: 1.David Bingham
*San Jose Earthquakes Academy