Sep 23, 2013, 7:10 PM EDT
Usually when we write about Steven Lenhart, words like “overly aggressive” or “fouling instigator” or “dirty play” or even “nearly started a full-fledged donnybrook!” are never far away.
Not today. Lenhart provided two highly essential goals for San Jose on Saturday night, both of his team’s early strikes in a 2-1 win over Real Salt Lake – a potential playoff shape-shifting result.
Lenhart headed in a 18th-minute cross, then was alert minutes later as San Jose took a quick free kick, exploiting the advantage of surprise for his early game winner.
And what an important game-winner it was. San Jose has but four matches remaining, and stands four points out of the playoffs. But three of the matches are potential “Ws,” at lowly Chivas USA, at home against eight-place Dallas and again at home against Colorado. A road match at rival Los Angeles is a slippery bit, to be sure. Then again, without the massive weekend win in Utah, thanks in large part to Lenhart, we wouldn’t even be talking today about any Earthquakes playoff chances at all.
With his pair of goals Saturday at Rio Tinto Stadium, Lenhart doubled his season total to four.
- Rare bad night from Robbie Keane costs LA Galaxy against Real Salt Lake 0
- Atlantic crushed: D.C. United, New York open the season with three-goal losses 2
- Stoppage time goal gives Seattle 1-0 opening day win over Sporting Kansas City (video) 10
- Premier League Roundup: Chelsea clear at the top, Manchester United click, Cardiff bag huge win 0
- Chelsea 4-0 Tottenham Hotspur: Blues blitz Spurs to extend their lead at the top (video) 0
- Cardiff City 3-1 Fulham: Bluebirds win the relegation dogfight 0
- Dallas Manage 3-2 Win in Season Opener Against Impact
- Dynamo Shut Out the Revs as Bruin Scores a Pair
- Argentine Melodies Illuminate Rainy Night in Portland
- LA Galaxy Gift Real Salt Lake Three Points in Season Opener
- Berhalter Gets First Win as Columbus Downs D.C. United 3-0
- Colorado Rapids - 3 Hopes and One Fear
- NYRB Don't Know What Hits Them in Emphatic 4-1 Whitecaps Win
- John Terry Rules out International Return
- Aberdeen March on in Scottish FA Cup
- 2014 MLS Season: Rebuilding The San Jose Earthquakes