Rookie goalkeeper David Bingham scored from more than 90 yards out in his professional debut to help the San Jose Earthquakes beat West Bromwich Albion 2-1 in an exhibition match Tuesday.
Bingham scored after corralling an errant through pass from West Brom. The 21-year-old goalkeeper stepped up and unleashed a punt from the top of his own penalty box in the third minute.
The ball took one large bounce over the head of new West Brom goalkeeper Boaz Myhill, who was staring directly into a setting sun at Buck Shaw Stadium without the benefit of a hat, and bounced once more before nestling in the open net.
"I couldn't believe it," San Jose midfielder Simon Dawkins said. "I thought the referee had stopped the game."
The goal came as a shock most of all to Bingham, who was so angry at himself for overshooting forward Scott Sealy with his punt that he missed his first goal since high school.
"I didn't even see it go in," Bingham said. "I hit it and I knew I overhit it, so I just turned around and walked back. And then everyone started yelling. . . . Sometimes it's good to be lucky."
It's the third time an MLS goalkeeper has scored from his own half of the field in recent years. New York's Danny Cepero scored from roughly 80 yards on a free kick against Columbus during a 2008 league match and Houston's Tally Hall drove a kick off the ground from 80 yards straight into the net against Metapan in CONCACAF Champions League play in 2009.
Bingham, who was removed at the half as San Jose made wholesale changes, also had three saves, including an impressive one to turn aside an 18-yard blast from Jerome Thomas in the 20th minute.
Myhill, who plays for the national team of Wales, was born in Modesto.
West Brom, beginning in its first preaseason under manager Roy Hodgson, is preparing for its Premier League opener at home against defending champion Manchester United on Aug. 14. The Baggies also play the minor league Ventura County Fusion at Oxnard, Calif., on Sunday and are at Portland on July 20. They also announced an exhibition at Olympiakos Piraeus on Aug. 4.