HOUSTON — Alberth Elis and Vicente Sanchez each had a goal and an assist, and the Houston Dynamo blanked the San Jose Earthquakes 3-0 on Saturday night.
Houston (10-7-7) joined Seattle and Sporting Kansas City at the top of the Western Conference standings by improving to 9-0-3 at home.
Elis got his head on a corner kick by Boniek García to open the scoring with his seventh goal in the 21st minute. It was the Dynamos' league-leading 17th goal off a set piece.
Elis helped ice the game in the 86th minute with a nifty touch to get around a defender before Sanchez beat his defender and the goalkeeper to the centering pass for his first goal.
Sanchez gathered a loose ball just before it crossed the end line and centered it to Mauro Manotas for his eighth goal in stoppage time.
Tyler Deric had three saves for his fourth shutout.
San Jose (9-10-5) has lost five straight on the road and remains one point up on Vancouver for the final playoff spot.
With the Earthquakes mired in a 4-8-16 season, management made a change Monday, parting ways with head coach Mikael Stahre and assistant coach Alex de Crook.
The move comes less than a year after Stahre was hired by the Quakes.
Earthquakes general manager Jesse Fioranelli issued a statement regarding the news:
“I would like to thank Mikael and Alex for their hard work and professionalism this season. Mikael has qualities, both as a person and a coach, that will be missed by players, staff and the front office alike.
“We felt we needed a change and decided that the six remaining games represent an opportunity for all of us to begin heading in a new direction and to evaluate our options actively with a single goal in mind: to strengthen our First Team for the upcoming season and beyond.”
Assistant coach Steve Ralston will serve as the interim head coach for the remainder of the 2018 season. The have six games left season, including Wednesday night's game against Atlanta United at Avaya Stadium in San Jose.
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Alphonso Davies and Nicolas Mezquida scored to help the Vancouver Whitecaps beat the San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 on Saturday night.
Davies opened the scoring in the 22nd minute, scooping a pass from Yordy Reyna in the Quakes’ box and tapping it into the bottom left corner of the net. It was the 17-year-old’s sixth goal of the year for Vancouver (11-9-7).
In the 78th minute, Reyna sailed a pass to Mezquida, who took a moment to settle the ball, then punted a rocket into the upper left-hand corner of the net. Vako Qazaishvili scored for San Jose (4-15-8) in stoppage time.