The Quakes did what no other MLS team has been able to do all season: defeat FC Dallas. A strong defensive effort combined with timely offense were the keys to the 1-0 victory.
Dom Kinnear must have read my piece on Nick Lima as the rookie fullback was slotted at the left-back position to start the match with Cato as right-back. Without any glaring weakness on the back-line, such as Sarkodie and Francis, the Quakes stymied the FC Dallas offense while setting up for the counter-attack with their two speediest fullbacks playing as a wing-backs on the attack.
The Quakes used the bunker-and-counter strategy to their advantage as Dallas had over 62% of the possession and had 217 MORE passes than San Jose (545-328). Despite 16 shots, the Quakes defense only allowed three on target, all of which were handled by David Bingham, who posted his fifth shutout of the season.
Jahmir “Hykachu” Hyka continues to impress as he had the game winner for three goals and two assists on the season. Hykachu also had two shots, two dribbles, and one key pass. Prior to Hyka’s goal, Dallas had only given up six goals all season, the best in MLS.
However, the stars were on the defensive side. Flo Jungwirth continues his onslaught on MLS with six tackles, two interceptions, seven clearances, and three blocked shots. Not to be outdone, Victor Bernardez racked up two tackles, seven interceptions, eight clearances, two clearances, and three won aerials. Fatai Alashe also won three aerials, had six tackles, four interceptions, and three clearances. Nick Lima helped ensure the shutout with three tackles, six interceptions, and three clearances. Once the smoke cleared, the Quakes defense posted unprecedented defensive numbers: 24 tackles, 33 interceptions, 29 clearances, and five blocked shots.
The win puts the Quakes squarely in fourth place in the West, and five points clear of their So-Cal rival, the L.A. Galaxy, whom they will play this Saturday.