If you’re a San Jose Earthquake player, the opponent’s goal must feel like it has a brick wall in front of it right now.
For the third straight match, the Quakes have been shut out -- this time dropping a 2-0 result to the Portland Timbers in the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. The loss eliminates San Jose from the 103rd edition of the domestic tournament.
Portland scored twice in the first half and Timbers keeper Jake Gleeson did not face any shots on target from San Jose.
The Earthquakes haven’t scored a goal since the 87th minute against the Los Angeles Galaxy back on May 22. Tuesday’s loss in the U.S. Open Cup marks 273 regulation minutes without a goal for the Quakes.
Darion Asprilla got Portland on the board in the 34th minute when he cleaned up an initial attempt by Jack McInerney inside the San Jose 18. Bryan Meredith got his hands on both attempts, but the shot had just enough on it to get past him. The goal wasn’t without its bit of controversy as Asprilla attempted the shot with McInerney in an offside position. The goal stood and the Timbers led 1-0.
There was no dispute six minutes later when McInerney marvelously struck a ball from about 25 yards out past Meredith to put Portland up 2-0. The free kick came after a handball just outside the 18.
Copa America effect: A large part of San Jose’s offensive struggles revolve around some of its top players on international duty during Copa America Centenario. Currently, with Chris Wondolowski, Alberto Quintero, Anibal Godoy and Simon Dawkins representing their countries, the Quakes are missing 12 goals and seven assists.
Portland-San Jose U.S. Open Cup history: Tuesday marked the fourth time that Portland has played the Earthquakes in some form of U.S. Open Cup play.
In 2004 and 2005, the United Soccer League Timbers played the Major League Soccer Earthquakes in the fourth round of the competition. The Quakes won in both those occasions. In 2011, the clubs played each other in MLS qualification for the competition.
The furthest the Quakes have advanced in the Cup was in 2004 when the club reached the semifinals, eventually falling to the then Kansas City Wizards 1-0.
Up next: San Jose resumes MLS play with a trip to Florida and a Saturday match against Orlando City SC. Panama was eliminated from Copa America play on Tuesday and so, Godoy and Quintero should be back with the team. Godoy did not play in Panama’s closing match following a suspension.
Game time is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Catch all the action on CSN California.