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CARSON, CA — The final whistle has all but blown on the San Jose Earthquakes (13-11-9) 2013 season. Unless they can manage to score 12 goals next week, the LA Galaxy (15-11-7) have shut the door on the Quakes playoff hopes with a 0-0 tie of the California Clasico on Sunday evening. With this tie, the Galaxy have also secured their own playoff berth with 52 points in the Western Conference.
The do or die attitude was evident in the first half. The Quakes played with an extra intensity and push that fans were starved for during the first part of the regular season. San Jose dominated the first half, with only a few chances surrendered to the Galaxy. If it weren’t for Galaxy goalkeeper Jaime Penedo, the score could have easily been two or three nil by half. Penedo came up with two absolutely stunning saves, laying out completely to deny the Quakes. Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the first half, but the intensity was building and both teams were getting good looks at goal.
The second half was more evenly matched. Both teams had chances but none could solve the opposing defense. In the 74th minute, Alan Gordon, who coming into this match had six goals in six games against LA, came on in relief of Cordell Cato. With Gordon, the “Bash Brothers” were reunited up top, providing the Quakes with some hope and new energy up top. Quakes keeper Jon Busch came up with an amazing save in the 82 minute that held the Galaxy off the scoreboard. You could feel the momentum switching towards the Galaxy side in the late minutes of the second half. The Quakes were still pushing, but the Galaxy were pushing just as hard.
San Jose’s late effort was not enough to earn the three points, and they saw their playoff dreams stripped away by their bitter in-state rivals. With the tie, the Galaxy lose out on the Supporters Shield this year, while remaining third place in the West. Their last game will be against the struggling Seattle Sounders next weekend.
The Earthquakes head back home this Wednesday to play CD Heredia in the CONCACAF Champions League at Buck Shaw. After that, they conclude their 2013 season on Saturday October 26th at home against FC Dallas. Unless the Quakes can work some serious magic and score 12 goals, it’s just about time for the Goonies to rest.