SANTA CLARA, CALIF — . -- Justin Braun's first goal of the season was all the help Zach Thornton needed for his league-leading fifth shutout, and Chivas USA beat the San Jose Earthquakes, 1-0, Saturday night.
Thornton made six saves and Chivas (6-1-1) took a six-point lead in the Western Conference. With Thornton in net for all of the games, Chivas has given up only three goals.
Braun scored in the 53rd minute after Jonathan Bornstein sent a high cross from the left sideline into the Earthquakes' penalty area.
Defender Nick Garcia and goalkeeper Joe Cannon each seemed to think the other was going to make a play. Instead, Braun slipped a right-footed shot from the box past Cannon.
San Jose (1-4-2) dominated play early on, but that control seeped away as Chivas handed the Earthquakes their fifth consecutive MLS loss.
Chivas nearly came up with the first goal of the game, in the 36th minute, when Braun's shot was partially deflected and the ball rolled to Paulo Nagamura, whose shot banged off the post.