SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) – Corey Hertzog took advantage of a temporary two-man advantage to score his first career MLS goal, rallying the Vancouver Whitecaps to a 1-1 draw against the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday night.
Hertzog picked up a deflected shot from teammate Daigo Kobayashi and slotted home a shot from 9 yards in the 62nd minute, as San Jose defender Victor Bernardez and forward Alan Gordon stood on the sideline. They had left the field roughly 90 seconds earlier to change their shoes on a slick night at Buck Shaw Stadium, and referee Fotis Bazakos did not permit them to re-enter until after Hertzog had scored.
After the game, Bazakos told a pool reporter in a written response that FIFA's Laws of the Game barred the players from coming back until there was a stoppage, quoting from Law 4, which deals with players' equipment. Under the subsection entitled ''Infringement and Sanctions,'' the last of six clauses states that ''the player is only allowed to re-enter the field of play when the ball is out of play.''
Chris Wondolowski tallied in the 18th minute for San Jose, which could not get a game-winning goal in the latter stages despite the season debut of forward Steven Lenhart, who returned from offseason knee surgery.
Sam Cronin hit the post in second-half stoppage time, and Wondolowski's attempt on the rebound was blocked by a Vancouver defender. Whitecaps goalkeeper Joe Cannon also came up with a critical save off a last-ditch corner kick to preserve the tie.
Vancouver (2-2-1) broke a two-game losing streak with its first road point of 2013. San Jose (2-2-2) lost a chance to move into the upper reaches of the Western Conference standings.
Hertzog made his first start of the season as coach Martin Rennie made multiple changes to shake up his attack, which was missing leading scorer Kenny Miller due to injury. Camilo, dropped from the lineup as part of the changes, came on as a substitute and almost drew a penalty kick in the 74th minute when he beat San Jose defender Dan Gargan and was ridden to the ground. Bazakos did not heed the visitors' cries, however.
Wondolowski has seven goals in six career matches against Vancouver, the most the Whitecaps have allowed to any opponent. Vancouver has kept Wondolowski off the score sheet only once since joining MLS as an expansion team in 2011.
Wondolowski, who has claimed at least a share of the league's scoring title for three consecutive seasons, has three on the season and moved two goals behind current leader Mike Magee of the LA Galaxy.