Brian Ching speaks to the crowd at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston on December 13, 2013 after his testimonial match.
|Full name||Brian Ching|
|Date of birth||May 24, 1978|
|Place of birth||Hale'iwa, Hawaii, United States|
|Height||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|Current club||Houston Dynamo (assistant coach)|
|1996||Honolulu Bulls Soccer Club|
|2001||Los Angeles Galaxy||8||(1)|
|2001||→ Seattle Sounders (loan)||7||(4)|
|2003–2005||San Jose Earthquakes||56||(25)|
|2013–||Houston Dynamo (assistant)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
Brian Ching (born May 24, 1978) is an assistant coach of the Houston Dynamo and a retired American soccer player. He was born in Haleiwa, Hawaii and developed his talents in nearby Honolulu before playing collegiately for NCAA Division I Gonzaga University and twelve years in Major League Soccer.
Ching's professional career began when he was the 16th pick overall by the Los Angeles Galaxy in the 2001 Major League Soccer SuperDraft. He became the first Gonzaga player and the first player from his native Hawaii selected in the MLS draft. After winning the 2001 U.S. Open Cup with the Galaxy, Ching was released from the team and played with the second division Seattle Sounders. He returned to first division soccer when the San Jose Earthquakes acquired him in the 2003 MLS Supplemental Draft. He won an MLS Cup and Supporters' Shield with the Earthquakes and collected the MLS Comeback Player of the Year Award, the MLS Golden Boot, and was named to the MLS Best XI.
In 2006, Ching relocated to Houston when the Earthquakes became the Houston Dynamo. He led the team to back-to-back MLS Cup Championships in 2006 and 2007 and four MLS finals overall. A six-time MLS All-Star, Ching retired from professional soccer in 2013 as Houston Dynamo’s all-time leading scorer.
Ching made his international debut May 26, 2003, becoming the first Hawaiian-born player to represent the United States. He became the first Hawaiian to be named to the U.S. roster for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, although he did not see any playing time. His only international silverware is the 2007 Gold Cup. Off the field, Ching is a pillar in the Houston community where he is partnered with Habitat for Humanity to build homes for underprivileged families in the Houston area through fundraising efforts under his program "The House that Ching Built".
- 1 Early life
- 2 Club career
- 3 International career
- 4 Testimonial match
- 5 Career statistics
- 6 Honors
- 7 Off the field
- 8 See also
- 9 Notes
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Ching lost his father, Francis, to cancer on December 25, 1982, when Ching was 3 years old. Stephanie Whalen, Ching's mother, raised him and his two brothers as a single parent. Ching didn't play soccer until he was 7, agreeing to only if his mother would coach.
Ching attended Kamehameha Schools Kapālama High School in Honolulu and played on the soccer team his junior and senior year. He was named the Interscholastic League of Honolulu MVP during his senior year with 14 goals and 6 assists. His junior year he was a second team All-ILH selection.
During his last year of high school Ching played with the Honolulu Bulls Soccer Club, a club team, and traveled to tournaments on the mainland where he was noticed by the Gonzaga coaching staff. He went on to play for the Gonzaga Bulldogs men's soccer program under head coach Einar Thorarinsson, whom Ching credits "for believing in him and providing him the skills to grow and mature to be able to compete at the next level."
During his collegiate career, Ching played for the Spokane Shadow of the Premier Development Soccer League (where Gonzaga coach Einar Thorarinsson was also the coach of the Shadow) and set a total of 21 goals during his stint in the 1998 and 1999 seasons. Ching was named the PDSL rookie of the year in 1998.
Ching joined the Bulldogs for the 1996 season, and as a freshman played in 18 matches with five starts. He finished second on the team in scoring with 12 points on 3 goals and 6 assists. As a sophomore he appeared in 16 matches with 14 starts and was second on the team behind West Coast Conference Player of the Year and teammate Jeff McAllister with 10 goals and 23 points, ranking fifth in the WCC in both categories. The 10 goals were second on the all-time Gonzaga single-season list and his 23 points were third on the all-time GU list. He earned All-WCC second-team honors.
His junior season was cut short by a knee injury suffered in the season opener, then re-injured in the next match, and received a medical redshirt year. Ching missed the entire 1998 season after surgery to repair injured meniscus in right knee.
The injury bug continued to plague Ching in the summer of 1999 when he was kicked in the cheek and eye while playing for the Spokane Shadow of the USL, the injury requiring surgery. Despite that injury, Ching was ready for the Bulldogs season opener and went on to start 17 of 18 matches. He scored 13 goals and had 8 assists for 34 points. The 13 goals were third on the all-time GU single-season list, the 34 points second. He scored his first goal of the season in a 2-2 tie against 11th-ranked Washington Huskies, got the insurance goal in a 3-1 victory over 7th-ranked Stanford and had a pair of goals against 4th-ranked University of San Diego in 4-2 home victory. He earned All-WCC first-team honors.
His final season of 2000 Ching missed three matches with an injury but still scored 8 goals and recorded 22 points. He was named All-WCC first team and earned All-Far West Region first-team honors. Ching finished his Gonzaga career with 34 goals, which still ties him third on the all-time GU list, and his 23 assists are a Gonzaga career record. Ching's 91 career points are still tied for second on the Gonzaga charts. With Ching, the Bulldogs were back-to-back co-champions of the West Coast Conference in 1997 and 1998. Ching majored in accounting.
Los Angeles Galaxy (2001) and Seattle Sounders (2001-2002)
|“||My first year in the league, I'm on the team with Cobi Jones, Cienfuegos, Alexi Lalas, Robin Fraser, Kevin Hartman, Matt Reis, Sasha Victorine, and Brian Mullan. For those guys to all be on one team my first year in the league, now that I look back on it, that was pretty special. Significant guys that have done a lot for U.S. soccer, to be on that team was a gift for me.||”|
—Brian Ching on his first year in MLS
Ching began his professional career when the defending CONCACAF Champion Los Angeles Galaxy drafted him as the 16th overall pick of the 2001 MLS SuperDraft. Los Angeles chose midfielder Brian Mullan and forward Isaias Bardales, Jr. in the first round, 9th and 11th respectively, before picking Ching with their fourth pick in the second round. Ching was the first ever Hawaian selected in the MLS draft.
Ching joined a roster that included U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame players Cobi Jones, Alexi Lalas, and Paul Caligiuri, Mexico's top World Cup scorer Luis Hernandez, Mauricio Cienfuegos, Ezra Hendrickson, Danny Califf, Kevin Hartman and was coached by Sigi Schmid. Ching wore the number 9 jersey with Los Angeles. Ching made his MLS debut against San Jose on April 7, 2001, as a member of the starting lineup. During the 2001 season, Ching appeared in 8 games (starting one) and recorded one goal and one assist.
Ching started and played the full match in his U.S. Open Cup debut, a 5-0 victory over the Nashville Metros at Titan Stadium on June 27, 2001, in the second round. Ching went full ninety again in Los Angeles' 3-1 victory over the Seattle Sounders Select where he provided the assist to Isaias Bardales' 81st minute goal, the Galaxy's third of the match. Those would be Ching's only appearances in the 2001 tournament as the Los Angeles Galaxy went on to win their first U.S. Open Cup trophy in franchise history.
Ching made his MLS Cup Playoffs debut in a 4-1 loss in game 2 of the quarterfinals against the New York-New Jersey MetroStars on September 27, 2001, after coming on as an 88th minute substitution for Cobi Jones. Ching appeared for a second time in the playoffs in the Galaxy's 1-0 overtime win in game 2 of the MLS semifinal series against the Chicago Fire on October 14, 2001, entering the game in the 91st minute for Sasha Victorine. The Galaxy advanced to the 2001 MLS Cup final and tied 1-1 with the San Jose Earthquakes in regulation before Dwayne De Rosario's golden goal in the 96th minute ended the match.
After signing Carlos Ruiz, the Galaxy waived Brian Ching on February 13, 2002, to comply with the MLS roster limits. One month later, he signed with the Seattle Sounders of the A-League where scored four goals and provided one assist in seven games the previous year when he was on loan from Los Angeles. Ching finished the 2002 season 2nd in the A-League in scoring with 16 goals and 8 assists, and was selected as a member of the A-League All-League first team.
San Jose Earthquakes (2003-2005)
Dominic Kinnear states that the first time the Earthquakes coaching staff first got a good look at Brian Ching was facing him in the July 17, 2002 third round match of the U.S. Open Cup when San Jose defeated the Seattle Sounders 4-3 after sudden death extra time. Kinnear, assistant coach at the time, and head coach Frank Yallop were impressed with how Ching matched up with Earthquakes defender Eddie Robinson, considered one of the best defenders in MLS at the time. Ching began training with the Earthquakes the following January. On February 11, 2003, San Jose traded Devin Barclay to D.C. United in exchange for the first overall pick in the 2003 MLS Supplemental Draft and on February 28, 2013, they used that pick to draft Ching.
Ching made his official Earthquakes debut in Guatemala City on March 16, 2003, playing a full match in a 4-2 Champions' Cup loss to C.S.D. Municipal. He played his first Earthquakes home game in the second leg against Municipal were he scored the first goal in the 35th minute. Ching made his first Earthquakes start in the MLS regular season on April 12, 2003 at Colorado Rapids and scored 53 seconds into the game. He would miss five games due to a right hamstring strain before returning to the starting lineup to score two goals for his first multi-goal game in MLS on July 2, 2003 at the MetroStars. He played 90 minutes in his first encounter against his old club Seattle Sounders on August 5 but the 1-0 loss eliminated San Jose from the 2003 Open Cup.
Ching left the August 16, 2003 game at New England Revolution with a ruptured right Achilles tendon. He underwent surgery on August 19 and missed the rest of the 2003 season as the San Jose Earthquakes went on to win the 2003 MLS Cup. Ching scored a career-high six goals and two assists during 2003. He was named to the MLS Team of the Week for April 12 and May 3, 2003.
Ching returned from injury in the 2004 Champions' Cup as a sub in both legs against eventual champion L.D. Alajuelense. Ching made his first start of the season on May 1 vs. D.C. United. Ching finished with a career-high 12 goals in MLS, sharing the MLS Golden Boot with Eddie Johnson. He was named to the MLS Best XI and recognized as the MLS Comeback Player of the Year. He also finished as the Earthquakes scoring champion and Most Valuable Player for the 2004 season.
In 2005, Ching scored seven goals in 16 games and tallied a career-high five assists in MLS play. He registered a goal or an assist in five straight games before missing 15 matches with a hamstring injury. He ended the regular season having recorded a goal or assist in six straight games. The San Jose Earthquakes finished the 2005 season with the best regular season record, clinching the Supporters' Shield. After the most successful regular season in team history with an 18-4-10 record and 64 points, the Earthquakes were placed on hiatus on December 15, 2005, with the franchise moving to Houston.
Houston Dynamo (2006-2013)
Along with the rest of his Earthquakes teammates, Ching moved to Houston for the 2006 season. He scored four goals in Houston's first-ever game on April 2, 2006 against the Colorado Rapids, becoming the seventh player in MLS history to score four goals in a single game. Ching found out he had been selected to U.S. world cup team on May 2 and celebrated with a game-deciding goal the following MLS fixture, May 6, against rival club FC Dallas. Ching missed six MLS games while he was with the U.S. national team at the 2006 FIFA World Cup. His bicycle kick on September 30 vs. D.C. United, which would later be awarded the MLS Goal of the Year Award, was the deciding goal in a 1-0 win that secured Houston's first ever MLS playoff spot.
In the 2006 MLS Cup Playoffs, Ching scored the series-winning goal with a header in stoppage time of the 2-0 win vs. Chivas USA in the second leg of the Western Conference semifinals. He was named MVP of the MLS Cup 2006 after scoring the tying goal in the 114th minute, less than one minute after New England Revolution had taken a 1-0 lead, and scoring the winning penalty kick in the penalty kick shootout.
In 2007, Ching ended the season tied for the team lead with seven goals despite missing 10 games entirely due to injuries and national-team call-ups. He contributed in the 2007 MLS Cup Playoffs with two playoff goals but sat out the 2007 MLS Cup final after straining his calf in the Western Conference final. He led Houston's comeback from a 2-0 aggregate deficit in the second leg of the Western Conference semifinal vs. FC Dallas on November 2, setting up Stuart Holden's goal in the 67th minute and then scoring himself from a Dwayne De Rosario through ball in the 72nd minute to tie the series. In extra time, of that game, he scored from close range in the 97th minute to give Houston the lead for good.
Ching was a staple in the Dynamo lineup during international competition. In the 2007 CONCACAF Champions' Cup he set up the series-winning goal against Puntarenas F.C. when his header hit the post and Kelly Gray scored on the rebound. Ching scored the opening goal in the semifinal first leg vs. C.F. Pachuca on March 15, heading in a Craig Waibel cross. In the semifinal second leg at Estadio Hidalgo on April 5, he set up the first Houston goal by keeping the ball in on the sideline, leading to Brian Mullan's goal and later scored in the 79th minute to give Houston a 4-3 aggregate lead before Pachuca rallied to win in extra time. Ching also participated in the 2007 Superliga, playing in all three group stage matches. He set up goal just 11 seconds into match vs. Monarcas Morelia on July 29, passing to Joseph Ngwenya for the fastest goal in Dynamo history. Ching scored the only goal in 1-0 win vs. D.C. United on August 1 and hit the post with the fourth penalty kick in the Dynamo's semifinal shootout loss vs. Pachuca on August 14.
During the 2008 season, Ching established team and personal records with 13 goals in the regular season and five assists in 25 games. Ching ranked fifth in the league in goals. In the team's second visit to San Jose since relocating to Houston, Ching scored a game-tying goal in second half and celebrated by pointing to the Dynamo crest in front of San Jose fans. In the final CONCACAF Champions' Cup he set up two of Houston's three goals in the quarterfinal second leg vs. CSD Municipal. In the 2008 Superliga he appeared in three games, starting the semifinal vs. Pachuca and the championship game at New England Revolution. In the inaugural CONCACAF Champions League, Ching appeared as a substitute at San Francisco F.C. and started vs. C.D. Luis Ángel Firpo, scoring the game's only goal to help Dynamo reach the quarterfinals.
Ching's performance during the 2009 season earned him Dynamo's Golden Boot for the third straight year with eight goals and three assists. He became seventh Dynamo player to make 100th starts for the club in all competitions and assisted on Cam Weaver's game-tying goal in the 80th minute of a 2-1 loss at Columbus Crew on September 13. In the 2008–09 CONCACAF Champions League Ching played all 90 minutes of both legs of the quarterfinal series vs. C.F. Atlante. He appeared in five games of the 2009–10 CONCACAF Champions League, making three starts. In the 2009 MLS Cup Playoffs, he netted the game-winning goal in 95th minute of a 1-0 overtime win vs. Seattle, swiveling to volley a shot into the left side netting for his 50th Dynamo goal in all competitions.
Ching ran into disciplinary trouble during the 2009 campaign. In July 2009, Ching was fined $500 by MLS for his comments regarding the officiating of the Dynamo's 2–1 loss to Seattle Sounders FC (a game Ching did not play in due to participation in the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup). On his Twitter page, Ching referred to the referee as "a joke" and "a cheat" for calling calling a Fredy Montero shot cleared off the line a goal. Ching scored the opening goal from a Brad Davis free kick in 3-2 win vs. Real Salt Lake on August 19 but was ejected in the 82nd minute for hard foul, the first red card in the 162 games of his MLS career. He was ejected again in next MLS game, a 0-0 tie vs. Los Angeles Galaxy on October 18, for raising his hand to the face of an opponent.
In 2010, Ching shrugged off injuries and national team disappointment to score seven goals and add three assists in 20 games, making 16 starts, to win the team's Golden Boot for the fourth straight year. His August 21 bicycle kick against Chicago was named ESPNSoccernet.com's MLS Goal of the Year and Dynamo Goal of the Year. He took over as the Dynamo team captain after the retirement of Wade Barrett. He was named as Don Garber's Commissioner's Pick for the 2010 MLS All-Star Game in Houston, a game where he came on as second-half substitute and scored with a header to cut the deficit to 2-1 vs. Manchester United F.C. The Dynamo missed the playoffs in 2010.
Ching was limited to 1,242 minutes in 20 appearances due to injury in 2011, the lowest minute total of his Houston career, but still tied for team lead with five goals. He started all four matches the Dynamo took part in the 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs, scoring a goal and adding an assist, to help lead the Dynamo back to the MLS Cup final. He started and set up the game-winning goal with left-footed through ball in 2-1 first-leg win at Philadelphia Union and scored the game-winning goal with header from a Brad Davis free kick in a 1-0 win the second-leg, scoring the final MLS goal at Robertson Stadium. Ching started the Eastern Conference championship match at Sporting Kansas City and closed the night by hoisting the trophy as team captain after the 2-0 win. He made his second career start in an MLS Cup final at Los Angeles, who denied the Dynamo the title with a narrow 1-0 victory.
Montreal Impact, return to Houston and retirement (2011-2013)
Ching was left exposed by Houston in the 2011 MLS Expansion Draft and was selected by expansion side Montreal Impact less than a week after playing in the MLS Cup final. Ching was traded back to Houston on February 16, 2012, for a conditional draft pick in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, after training with Montreal for about a month, coincidentally playing a pre-season game against the Houston Dynamo.
Ching started opening day on for the Dynamo for the sixth time in seven years and nearly scored fantastic goal at Chivas USA when his first-touch volley off a long cross from Brad Davis hit inside of post and caromed away for near goal. Ching made his 200th MLS appearance (136th with Dynamo) in 3-1 loss to Vancouver Whitecaps FC on June 10. Ching made his 150th Dynamo start in all competitions against D.C. United on April 28, the 4th Dynamo to reach this milestone. Ching drew and converted a penalty in the 83rd minute on June 30 vs. Philadelphia, his second goal of the year and first at BBVA Compass Stadium. The goal against Philadelphia was his 20th career game-winning goal. He would go on to set a career-high with 30 games in 2012 regular season, tying his career-high of five assists.
Ching signed a deal in early 2013 to return to the Dynamo as a player-coach and later announced his retirement effective at the end of the 2013 season. Ching officially announced his intention to retire at the end of the 2013 Major League Soccer season on September 24, 2013, although he played his final professional minutes in a 4-1 loss to the New York Red Bulls on Sunday, September 8, 2013. He made two more appearances on the match day squad, his last being in a CONCACAF Champions League game on September 25, 2013, but was an unused substitution.
Ching earned his first cap with the U.S. national team on May 26, 2003 as a substitute in a friendly match against Wales at Spartan Stadium (home stadium of Ching's club at the time, San Jose Earthquakes). He is the first Hawaiian and the second Chinese-American (after Mark Chung) to play for the United States. Ching scored his first international goal, an equalizer in the 88th minute, in a World Cup qualifier 1-1 tie against Jamaica in Kingston on August 18, 2004.
On May 2, 2006, Ching was named to the U.S. men's squad for the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany but did not make an appearance in the tournament.
He scored a goal in a 2–0 US CONCACAF Gold Cup victory over Trinidad and Tobago on June 9, 2007. He drew a penalty in the box of the second half of the Gold Cup Final against Mexico. Landon Donovan converted the penalty, tying the game at one. The USA won 2–1 after Benny Feilhaber's game winner.
On September 24, 2013, the Houston Dynamo and Dynamo Charities announced a Brian Ching Testimonial Match to celebrate the career of the retiring forward, with proceeds from the match to benefit Ching’s charitable initiative, The House That Ching Built. The match, which took place on December 13, 2013, featured historial Dynamo players as well as Ching's old teammates from other MLS clubs and the U.S. national team. Ching's Orange Team won 6-4 with the Dynamo forward scoring five goals to close the curtain on his career.
December 13, 2013
7:30 p.m. CST
|Ching 10', 21', 23', 48' (pen.), 69'
|Report||Carr 8', 57'
|Club||Season||League[nb 1]||Playoffs[nb 2]||Cup[nb 3]||Continental[nb 4]||Total|
|Los Angeles Galaxy||2001||8||1||1||2||0||0||2||0||1||—||12||1||2|
|Seattle Sounders||2001 (loan)||7||4||1||—||—||—||7||4||1|
|San Jose Earthquakes||2003||15||6||2||0||0||0||1||0||0||2||1||0||18||7||2|
- Scores and results list United States' goal tally first.
|“||My legacy? I just want to be known as a hardworking guy who overachieved and is a winner. I think there's always been more talented people out there and whatnot. But I've accomplished a lot, more than I ever thought I would, because of my desire and my desire to compete.||”|
Los Angeles Galaxy
San Jose Earthquakes
- MLS Cup (2): 2006, 2007
- MLS Western Conference Championship (2): 2006, 2007
- MLS Eastern Conference Championship (2): 2011, 2012
- USL PDSL Rookie of the Year: 1998
- A-League All-League First Team: 2002
- MLS All-Star (6): 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010
- MLS Best XI: 2004
- MLS Comeback Player of the Year: 2004
- MLS Golden Boot: 2004
- MLS Goal of the Year: 2006
- MLS Cup MVP: 2006
- Houston Dynamo MVP: 2008
- Houston Dynamo Golden Boot (3): 2008, 2009, 2010
- Houston Dynamo Humanitarian of the Year: 2013
- West Coast Conference Hall Of Honor: 2011
Off the field
Ching hosted his own sports segment on a KHOU, "Kickin' It with Brian Ching, on which he offered up advice on everything from becoming a professional soccer player to befriending the StairMaster."
- Includes Major League Soccer and A-League
- Includes MLS Cup Playoffs and A-League Playoffs
- Includes U.S. Open Cup and Canadian Championship
- Includes CONCACAF Champions' Cup and CONCACAF Champions League
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- Gonzaga Athletics (4 March 2011). "Gonzaga's Brian Ching Inducted Into WCC Hall Of Honor". Gonzaga Athletics. Retrieved 28 November 2013.
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- Dominic Kinnear (speaker) (September 24, 2013). Brian Ching Testimonial Announcement (720p) (YouTube) (in English). BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston, Texas: Houston Dynamo. Event occurs at 13:50. Retrieved December 18, 2013. "2002 Open Cup game, Seattle Sounders vs. San Jose Earthquakes. It was the first time we really got a good look at Brian Ching and we felt that Eddie Robinson, at the time, was the most physical and dominating center back in MLS. I thought Brian gave him a good little run around, and a good little throw down every once in a while. It was one of the best physical match-ups I've seen in a soccer match. After the game, the one thing we spoke about is how can we get this guy to come and play for us. We made a trade to get Brian in the 2003 Supplemental Draft. Little did I know, in 2003, how much success that draft would bring us and I think it goes down, possibly, as one of the best trades ever made in Major League Soccer."
- San Jose Earthquakes Media Relations (2003), San Jose Acquire Brian Ching in MLS SuperDraft, San Jose Earthquakes, archived from the original on February 28, 2003, retrieved December 18, 2013
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- "Kick Started". Outside Online May 2010 Issue. Retrieved 2 May 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Brian Ching.|
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Brian Ching|
- Official website
- Brian Ching on Twitter
- MLS player profile
- Brian Ching profile at ussoccer.com
- Brian Ching – FIFA competition record
|Houston Dynamo captain
|United States captain
July 23-26, 2009