New England Soccer Today

Rowe Powers Revs to First Win

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution earned their first victory of the 2015 MLS season with a 2-1 win over the San Jose Earthquakes in a chilly, snowy Saturday afternoon in front of 10,668 at Gillette Stadium.  With the victory, the Revolution improve to 1-2-1 (4 points) on the young season.

Kelyn Rowe scored two first-half goals, ending a 346 minute goalless stretch for the Revolution going back to last season.  Chris Wondolowski scored the lone goal for the visiting Earthquakes from a 61st minute penalty kick.

“We were excited with our first half and the way we went out in that first half and even the start of the second,” said Revolution head coach Jay Heaps. “Unfortunately it became a real game and it was a good job to hold on, but it probably shouldn’t have been as close, but it was.”

The ball was on the Earthquakes’ side of the field for the beginning of the game, with the Revolution applying pressure and forcing turnovers from San Jose’s sloppy backline.  The Revolution’s first chance came in the 12th minute when a Chris Tierney cross led to a loose ball in the six-yard box that was just out of Rowe’s reach.  Minutes later, Lee Nguyen drew a foul and a yellow card on centerback Clarence Goodson, leading to a Tierney free kick that was pushed away by San Jose keeper David Bingham.

The Revolution continued pressing and were rewarded in the 21st minute when Daigo Kobayashi forced a turnover in the midfield, found Nguyen who exploited the right wing, and Nguyen passed back to an unmarked Rowe. Rowe carried the ball into the 18-yard box and scored, benefitting from a change in direction caused by a deflection from Earthquakes defender Shaun Francis.

San Jose began to push back, but the Revolution closed the first half continuing their strong pressure and keeping the ball in the Earthquakes half.  In the 35th minute, Rowe deflected a Tierney cross from the left wing with his body on net, but Bingham had his finest moment of the night adjusting his momentum and diving to push the ball away from going in.  However, two minutes later, from a similar spot on the left wing, a Tierney set piece found Darrius Barnes, who headed the ball to the right of Bingham, and Kelyn Rowe found himself in the right place at the right time with a tap-in goal, increasing the lead to 2-0.

Charlie Davies, making his first start of the 2015 season, created the first chance of the second half in the 48th minute, outracing his defender to a long through ball and carried it into the six-yard box, but at a weird angle from the right of goal, couldn’t slide it past a charging Bingham.  Davies had another chance in the 57th minute as a Rowe through pass got through the backline, but Bingham beat Davies to the ball.

The Earthquakes were given new life in the 61st minute when Scott Caldwell clipped Clarence Goodson just inside the box, which gave San Jose a penalty kick.  Wondolowski got Bobby Shuttleworth to dive the wrong way and scored his third goal of the season and sixth in his career against New England.

With only a one goal advantage, the Revolution worked to preserve the lead and San Jose went on the attack.  In the 83rd minute, a San Jose corner led to a Victor Bernardez header, which Shuttleworth tipped over the bar.  In the 89th minute, a Shea Salinas cross sailed just high of two Earthquake players in front of goal.  The final chance of the night came late in stoppage time when a San Jose corner was deflected toward goal where Earthquake midfielder Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi was left unmarked within the six yard box, but wasted a golden opportunity to tie the game and fired over the bar, effectively ending the game.

Kelyn Rowe was named the man of the match, scoring both Revolution goals and firing five shots on net, all of which came in the first half.  Darrius Barnes got his second start of the season and first start of the season at right back, while registering his fourth career assist on Rowe’s second goal of the match.  Juan Agedulo made his fourth start in four games since returning for the Revolution’s 2015 season, but for the first time this year started at right wing while Charlie Davies got the start as the lone striker.  Agudelo fired four shots, none of which were on goal, before being substituted for Steve Neumann in the 69th minute.

For the Earthquakes, the match ends their two-game winning streak and evened their record for 2015 to 2-2-0 (6 points).  They will travel back home to face Real Salt Lake.  On the winning side, the match breaks the Revolution’s winless streak to start the season at three games, while increasing their winning streak against the Earthquakes to three games.  The Revolution hit the road next weekend traveling to face the Colorado Rapids next Saturday.  Their next home game will be in two weeks on April 11th against Eastern Conference foe, the Columbus Crew.

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