I'll work on this as long as I feel like it; if it suddenly ends, sorry. Ha!
Pregame- Espi and Findley up top, nice. Grabavoy on the right instead of AWill, who I kinda expected to see. Just seconds away!
1st min-And RSL 2010 is off and running! Kinda digging the blue stripes on the sleeves on the away jersey.
5th min-Both teams looking out of sync and tenative. Espindola goes flying over the boards as Leitch fouls him very near the sideline. Crazy!
7th min-Rimando slips trying to clear the ball, SJ nearly pounces on it... Yikes, not a good start.
9th min-Salt Lake's D looking very vulnerable early. This could be a high scoring affair if either team can get its passing together.
12th min-Dangerous SJ free kick in the corner but luckily right to Big Nick.
14th min-GOAL JAVI! Gorgeous shot from deep!
Wife wants the laptop so I'm out.
27th min-And I'm back. Javi a beautiful ball through the middle and 2 defenders to Espi who chips Cannon. 2-0 RSL!
30 minutes in, Espi, Javi, and Rimando looking good. Central defense still bending but haven't broken yet.
31st min-Both RSL and SJ players slipping in the same place Nick did earlier. Apparently there have been oil slicks installed at Buck Shaw.
33rd min-Announcers just said former RSL man Atiba Harris has scored a goal tonight. Nice to hear, always liked Atiba.
34th min-Grabavoy diving in recklessly again, luckily no foul. He's been doing that a lot tonight, he needs to be careful, many MLS refs will card him for efforts like that.
37th min-Findley really struggling with the touch tonight, even more so than usual. A bit overeager perhaps?
39th min-And there's Ned's yellow. He really needs to get his head on straight.
42nd min-Cornell Glen and Ryan Johnson causing RSL all sorts of problems. Becks comes flying into the box and saves the day just before Glen can turn.
Half time- RSL 2 - SJ 0. Nice first 45 minutes of the season for the Reds. Was it perfect? Not by any means, but up 2-0 on the road at half is not a place RSL sees themselves very often! B+. Javi, Nick, Espi, and the outside backs have impressed. The central defenders, Neddy G, and Robbie F. have looked a bit off.
46th min-30 seconds in, Espi already on the attack again, Cannon barely able to stop his run!
53rd min- Espi gets free, beats Leitch, who grabs him from behind just outside the box. Last man back, red card Leitch. Javi then rockets the free kick into the far post upper 90. 3-0 RSL! Javi looking like he should be going to South Africa with Argentina tonight! Up 3, up a man, barring a complete collapse, this is 3 points in the bank for RSL.
58th min-Brandon McDonald goes in very high and very late on WillJ. Yellow card. Quakes losing their composure here?
59th min-Nat Borchers looking like he's at the end of a Rocky movie, absolutely covered in blood. Cut on his forehead.
60th min-10 v 10 while Nat is attended to. Alvarez burns Robbie Russell, gets free in the box, but hits the post. San Jose's follow-up goes way over.
63rd min-And to answer the trivia question: Who are RSL's first subs of 2010? Rauwshan McKenzie for the bloody Borchers and Andy Williams for Ned Grabbingboys.
65th min-Olave beaten, ugly foul from behind on Johnson. Yellow card. Dangerous place for a free kick. Alvarez shanks it. Crisis averted.
71st min-Espi out, Alvaro Saborio in. Big new signing or Kenny Deuchar part 2?
73rd-Must say that the defense, for the most part, has looked improved here in the second half.
73rd-Johnson gets the ball right in front of the goal, great save Rimando! Also kicked Olave on the follow through, possibly in the knee. All subs have been made for RSL, we're going 10 v 10, at least for a while.
75th-Saborio with a long shot, rolls weakly to Cannon. First MLS shot for him.
76th-Olave back on but obviously hurt. This allows Glen to run right by him, but Rimando uts him off and he just puts it wide.
78th-Saborio beats and draws the defense, passes to Findley in the box, Cannon beaten, Corrales saves it off the line. Shades of things to come?
80th min-Olave still limping, announcers say it's the right knee. Could be a devastating blow for RSL if he is out for any extended length of time.
82nd-I know the shutout would be nice and all, but RSL should really think about just pulling Olave and not risk further injury. Since the Quakes are already down a man, you'd still be even strength. Not worth keeping him out there to protect a 3 goal lead for 10 min.
84th-Maybe a little early to say this but Saborio already looking much faster and with much better feet than Deuchar ever did.
85th-Ryan Johnson with a flick to Amerikwa who just can't quite get onto the ball for a free header.
86th-Ryan Johnson looks very dangerous still. Could be a big year for him.
88th-Wave after wave of SJ attack. Alvarez and Johnson leading the charge. You'd think they were up a man! Olave down again and now with a huge limp. GET HIM OFF THE FIELD!
90th-Olave on one leg with a beautiful challenge in the box on Amerikwa, denying his run. Perfectly timed! Dude is a beast!
90+1-Amerikwa throws a completely unnecessary shoulder/elbow into WillJ as he goes by, nearly starts a fight. Guess who just won Assclown of the Match?
Full time-RSL starts 2010 with a 3-0 victory ON THE ROAD!!! Nice start to the year. Second half got a little ugly late, especially with Olave hurt and San Jose desperate. Half grade-B
Game grade: B+, nice 3-0 win, but probably should be a bit better up a man. Seemed to get a bit complacent late.
Nick Rimando-8 Stellar all night long.
Robbie Russell-6 A couple mistakes too many.
Nat Borchers-6 OK game for Nat, probably needs a transfusion now.
(Rauwshan McKenzie)-6 Quiet, but helped keep SJ off the board.
Jamison Olave-6 Had some great moments and some iffy ones.
Chris Wingert-6 Great first half, too quiet in the second.
Kyle Beckerman-6 Nondescript game for Becks.
Ned Grabavoy-5 A little too wild and crazy on his challenges.
(Andy Williams)-6 Not a ton to do, but tracked back well on defense.
Will Johnson-6 Quiet game for the Mountie.
Javier Morales-9 Absolutely brilliant. 2 goals and an assist.
Fabian Espindola-8 Great game. Got a goal and was a thorn in SJ's side all night.
(Alvaro Saborio)-7 Not a lot of time on the field, but very active.
Robbie Findley-5 Poor game for Robbie, touch was really off.
RSL Man of the Match: Javi Morales
Abused the San Jose midfield and defense. Simply masterful, by far the best player on the field.
Assclown of the Match: Quincy Amarikwa
Gives Will Johnson an overly-aggressive version of the old "high school shoulder" for no reason. Totally douchy move. Amarikwa the Assclown. It just rolls off the tongue.
Pros and Cons:
+Javi and Espi looking like their old selves.
+RSL already has half as many road wins as last year after one game.
+Nice solid shutout to start the year.
+Rimando great, as usual, in goal.
-Injury to Olave looks like it could be pretty big and possibly recurring throughout the year.
-Although they didn't give up a goal, the defense looked very suspect at times.
-Have Findley's feet actually gotten worse?