Did you know that San Jose has a MLS team in their own backyard? The South Bay Elite Squad found this out firstahand on Sunday, August 18 while the our local team played (and won!) against Kansas City at Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara. Yep, we kicked it with the Earthquakes!
The San Jose organization was established in 1994, when San Jose became a charter member of Major League Soccer on June 15. San Jose joined Boston, Columbus, Los Angeles, New York/New Jersey and Washington, D.C. as the first teams in MLS. Between November, 1994 and June 1995, Tampa Bay, Denver, Kansas City and Dallas were added as clubs and the San Jose team was assigned to the Western Conference.
When the San Jose Major League Soccer club decided to change its name and look in 1999, it went into the past to do so. Reaching back to a previously successful soccer team in the area, the Clash became the Earthquakes. The previous incarnation of the Earthquakes played in the North American Soccer League from 1974-1984, and then in the Western Soccer Alliance from 1985-88. Those Earthquakes teams called Spartan Stadium home. The name Earthquakes originally came from a newspaper contest in the San Jose Mercury News, in which fans were encouraged to send in suggestions for the name of the soon-to-be formed San Jose franchise. The name Earthquakes was chosen by the team's management.
We started off the evening with a little tailgate across the street from Buck Shaw. Yelp had their own reserved area in the Earthquakes parking lot, perfect for some beer, snacks, and giant Jenga. Yelpers brought their own chairs and pre-gamed it for an hour or so before heading over for kick off. Each Yelper who made it to the game on time was given complimentary game tickets as well as a food and drink voucher. It's not a professional sporting event without hot dogs and draft beers, right? And the lucky few who lined up early even got a commemorative bobble head - the ultimate souvenir!
It wasn't even 30 minutes into the game when San Jose scored and cannons blew confetti all over the field. Yelpers and Earthquakes fans cheered all the way until halftime. The mid-game show was even more adorable with Polynesian hula dancers, big and small. Yes, even the most teeny tiny little girls were there to shake their hips. And though there were no other goals scored in the second half, it was fun to celebrate a win for San Jose.
"Not only was this my first Earthquakes game, but it was also my first tailgate," squealed Alyx F. "When we got to the game, the seats were great. Pretty much everywhere in the stadium has awesome visibility." Chris C also agreed that "The game itself was very entertaining. MLS is often criticized for being a slow sport but there were plenty of tense moments and close calls, keeping the game pretty exciting." Finally, Wendy W was especially pleased about the event since, "My husband
is a huge soccer fan (mostly international teams) so we've never really considered attending a local game... but after this experience, I think it's something we definitely will try to do again!"
Read the 5-star reviews from our sporty Sunday funday and check out photos from Jorge Novoa on Flickr! A special thanks to Jacob from the San Jose Earthquakes for coordinating the event, the team has a few more Yelpy fans because of it :)
Yelp Intern Jordan L, Earthquakes mascot Q, and Community Manager Abby S