Dynamo-Earthquakes Preview

Chris Wondolowski’s stunning breakout season may culminate in

MLS MVP honors. It’s already put the San Jose Earthquakes back in

the playoffs.

Wondolowski has his sights set on the Earthquakes’ single-season

scoring record as they host the struggling Houston Dynamo on

Saturday night.

Wondolowski has scored a career-high 14 goals – twice as many as

his total from the previous six seasons with San Jose (12-8-7) and

Houston. The forward is second in the league in scoring, two goals

shy of Los Angeles’ Edson Buddle.

He’s also gained momentum as a viable MVP candidate after

scoring twice in a 10-minute span during a 2-0 win over D.C. United

last Saturday, helping to clinch the Earthquakes’ first playoff

spot since being reformed in 2008.

“I said it before and I’ll say it again, there are some good

players in the league, but to go from where Wondolowski has come to

be where he is now is outstanding,” coach Frank Yallop said.

“Hopefully he’ll be in there – I know that I’d vote for him.”

Wondolowski needs one more game-winning goal to match the league

record of nine, set by Carlos Ruiz with the Galaxy in 2002. Any

goal would tie the Earthquakes’ single-season scoring record, set

by Ronald Cerritos in 1999.

“That would be a huge honor because there have been some

brilliant strikers like Ronald Cerritos and Brian Ching, just to

name a few,” Wondolowski told the Earthquakes’ official website.

“I’m honored to be in that list, and I’m hoping to maybe break it

because I’ve been a San Jose fan my whole life growing up in the

Bay Area.”

With three regular-season games remaining and a playoff spot

assured, however, Wondolowski’s playing time may be limited in

order to focus on a bigger prize.

“I always want to be out there,” Wondolowski said. “If (Yallop)

says it’s best for the team to not go, I have no problem with that

and won’t say anything to him or argue with him. The individual

awards would be great, but ultimately, the one award I want to get

is that championship ring.”

Wondolowski was held without a goal during a 2-1 win at Houston

on Sept. 5.

The Dynamo (7-15-6) have already been eliminated from playoff

contention for the first time since relocating from San Jose in


Houston, 1-5-1 in its last seven, was booed off the field by

home fans after defensive miscues led to Sunday’s 2-1 loss to New

England. The game was also marred by red cards to forward Joseph

Ngwenya and midfielder Geoff Cameron in injury time, leaving the

duo suspended Saturday.

The Dynamo may also be without Ching, the team leader with seven

goals, for a second consecutive game due to a knee injury.

Dominic Oduro will try to continue his hot stretch. The forward

has three goals in four games after getting two in the previous