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Scoreboard watching: How the weekend’s games panned out for San Jose Earthquakes

Keeping tabs on the Western Conference playoff race.

MLS: Real Salt Lake at San Jose Earthquakes Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The San Jose Earthquakes had an unexpected weekend off from game action, with Sunday’s game against LAFC postponed due to a coronavirus outbreak on LAFC, but results elsewhere in the Western Conference mostly helped their playoff chances.

The Quakes did drop one place in the conference standings, to 8th place, after the Colorado Rapids defeated the Seattle Sounders 3-1 on Sunday. That means the margin of error has shrunk with San Jose in the final playoff spot.

However, the chasing pack mostly helped the Earthquakes’ prospects. The Vancouver Whitecaps lost 1-0 to the Portland Timbers, while the LA Galaxy beat Real Salt Lake 2-1 in a six-pointer. That result, coupled with the Houston Dynamo’s 3-0 loss to FC Dallas, means RSL and Houston are officially eliminated from playoff contention.

In turn, that means it’s a four-team race for the last two spots. The Rapids are on 1.38 points per game with two games scheduled to play. The Earthquakes are on 1.29 ppg, with either one or two games left depending on if the LAFC game is rescheduled. The Whitecaps are on 1.09 ppg, and the Galaxy are at 1.05 ppg, so there is a gap between the teams above the playoff line and those not. It’s also worth noting that the Whitecaps and Galaxy will play on Decision Day, so one team could eliminate the other or they could both be eliminated from that match.

Still, since we’re determining the playoffs by points per game and not pure points this year, every game is important, and so we really can’t book the Earthquakes’ ticket to the playoffs until the games are played. And obviously their destiny remains in their hands at this stage.

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