Adin Brown is "phenomenal'' in 2-0 victory over San Jose.
By RODNEY PAGE
© St. Petersburg Times,
published August 5, 2001
TAMPA -- Mutiny coach Perry Van Der Beck was not shy in his assessment of goalkeeper Adin Brown after Tampa Bay's 2-0 win over San Jose on Saturday night in front of 11,064 at Raymond James Stadium.
"Best goalkeeping performance I've seen in MLS, ever," Van Der Beck said. "He was phenomenal."
Mutiny defender Steve Trittschuh just shook his head when asked about Brown.
"Best I've seen," Trittschuh said.
Brown helped the Mutiny (4-16-1) snap a six-game losing streak and earn its first win since June 23. He had 10 saves, including a penalty kick by Dwayne DeRosario in the 62nd minute. Brown also had 10 saves at San Jose on July 14, but the Mutiny lost that game 2-1.
Most were spectacular, like the one in the 11th minute on a Ronnie Ecklund blast from 15 yards after a defensive lapse. Then there was the diving save in the 33rd minute that snuffed a Ronald Cerritos shot. And in the 71st minute Brown smothered a DeRosario breakaway 15 yards from goal.
There were diving saves in the 82nd and 89th minute that preserved the Mutiny's first shutout in 31 games.
It didn't hurt to be a little lucky either. In the 55th minute, San Jose midfielder Manny Lagos' shot from 18 yards hit the left post. Lagos headed the rebound, but it hit the crossbar and Brown scooped up the ball.
"I should've kissed the crossbar," Brown said. "It was just one of those nights when everyone gave a solid, hard effort. I was there when things broke down."
Tampa Bay is 7-0 all-time against San Jose at home. The Earthquakes (10-5-5) have lost two straight. The win is Van Der Beck's first since taking over in July.
San Jose rookie forward Landon Donovan, last week's most valuable player in the MLS All-Star Game, did not play until the 59th minute because of a violation of a team rule. By then it was 2-0.
In the 23rd minute, the Mutiny found a seam in the defense to score the game's first goal. Eric Denton crossed from the left sideline to Steve Ralston in the middle of the field.
Ralston dribbled a few steps and passed to forward Josh Keller, who beat two defenders at the 18-yard box. Keller had an open look from 12 yards and drilled the shot past goalkeeper Joe Cannon.
The Mutiny built a 2-0 lead, its largest since a 3-0 halftime margin against D.C. United on June 23, thanks to a perfectly placed free kick by Mamadou Diallo. Diallo curled the kick from 25 yards across the goal box to an open Danny Pena.
Pena, traded by Los Angeles on July 20, headed the ball from inside 5 yards for his first goal of the season.
"Manny Lagos was with me, why he let me go I don't know," Pena said. "I don't think he anticipated me coming forward. And it was a great ball by Diallo. All I had to do was finish."
The Mutiny was outshot 10-4, but Brown, traded from Colorado on June 28, took care of the rest.
Pena, who has played two games with the Mutiny, sees a difference in the team already.
"I told the guys to remember how this feels," Pena said. "It's an attitude. We have to have a winning attitude."
UP NEXT: Mutiny at Chicago, 8 p.m. Saturday, TV: Sunshine.