RECAP: WEEKEND GERMAN ACTION
Daniel Williams and Fabian Johnson pulled off the upset of the weekend in the Bundesliga against Jermaine Jones and Schalke, while Steve Cherundolo and Hannover got back in the win column.
1899 Hoffenheim 3 - 2 Schalke 04
Daniel Williams and Fabian Johnson pulled off the upset against Jermaine Jones and Schalke, as all three points remained with the home team in Saturday Bundesliga action.
Johnson started on the left flank, while Williams and Jones were lined up across from each other in defensive midfield roles. Hoffenheim's American duo both played the full 90, while Jones was subbed off late.
Hoffenheim took the lead in the 13th minute as Johnson stripped Lewis Holby and sprinted into the attacking third.
Johnson then spotted and found Kevin Volland with a pinpoint through ball. The young German then converted with his left for the lead.
Schalke drew level in the 37th minute with Roman Neustädter heading home off of a corner from Jefferson Farfan.
Despite dominating play, Schalke fell behind yet again in the 67th minute. Joel Matip was adjudged to have fouled Volland in the box. Although replays suggested otherwise, referee Denis Aytekin awarded a penalty that Roberto Firmino converted.
Undeterred, Schalke continued their dominance and was rewarded with a late equalizer in the 82nd minute, as Japanese defender Atsuto Uchida tapped home Farfan's low cross from the right.
Hoffenheim, however, was not to be denied.
Vincenzo Grifo and Sven Schipplock, both brought on in the 62nd and 89th minutes respectively, combined at the top of the box to unlock the Schalke backline, with the latter converting the former's feed to score in the first minute of second-half stoppage time.
With the win, Hoffenheim sits in 13th place with 11 points. Schalke is in second with 20 points after the defeat.
Johnson and Williams take on Düsseldorf on Saturday, while Jones and Schalke host Arsenal on Tuesday in the Champions League and then Bremen on Saturday.
Hannover 96 2 - 0 FC Augsburg
Captain Steve Cherundolo manned his usual right back spot for Hannover, who thoroughly dominated Augsburg to pick up a much needed victory.
Winless in league play since late September, Cherundolo and Hannover were looking to build off of a victorious cup outing on Wednesday.
Hannover had an easy time on Saturday against last-place Augsburg, who posed no genuine threat to the Lower Saxons.
In the 26th minute Hannover took the lead through Mamé Diouf, who redirected a cross from Lars Stindl into the back of the net.
The roles were reversed for the second goal. Diouf stripped Ja Cheol Koo in midfield, sprinted into the attacking third and laid off for Stindl, who fired home spectacularly from 20 yards out to finish off the day's scoring.
Cherundolo and Hannover are in action on Wednesday in the Europa League and then again on Sunday against Stuttgart.
Eintracht Braunschweig 2 - 1 Sandhausen
Andrew Wooten saw just under 30 minutes of second-half action as Sandhausen fell yet again to leaders Braunschweig.
Wooten, who did not start against Schalke in the German Cup this past week, also had to start the match as a spectator, but came on in the 62nd minute.
The game's first goal fell in the 45th minute as Korte scooted around his man on the right flank and whipped in a well-struck cross to Kumbela in the center of the box. The German-Congolese made no mistake and powered his header past Sandhausen keeper Daniel Ischdonat.
Right after the restart, Kumbela was back at it. This time the striker converted a cross from Damir Vrancic from 7 yards out to double Braunschweig's lead in the 50th minute.
Sandhausen pulled within a goal in the 62nd minute through Frank Löning, who redirected a free kick past keeper Daniel Davari with his right boot.
Try as they might, Sandhausen was unable to find an equalizer.
Wooten and Sandhausen are stuck in 16th place with nine points. They host Hertha Berlin on Friday.
Hertha Berlin 0 - 0 Ingolstadt
John Anthony Brooks started in defense for Berlin, who had to settle for a point against Ingolstadt.
Brooks went the distance alongside Fabian Lustenberger, going the distance.
The opening stages of the match were dominated completely by the hosts. Excellent chances at an opener went begging by midfielder Ronny, striker Sandro Wagner and Ronny again in the second, fourth and 12th minutes respectively.
Igolstadt's first real threat to Thomas Kraft's goal came in the 20th minute through Caiuby, who saw his thunderous effort from 24 yards out smash off the crossbar.
Berlin came close to snatching a second-half winner in the 75th minute, but substitute Sammy Allagui could not beat Igolstadt keeper Ramazan Özcan despite having an open crack at goal from five yards out.
Up next for Brooks and Berlin is a Friday-night date against Andrew Wooten and Sandhausen.
Preußen Münster 3 - 2 Rot Weiß Erfurt
Matt Taylor kept his hot streak going for Munster as the Westphalians knocked off lowly Erfurt on Saturday.
Taylor played the full 90 for Pavel Dotchev's team and scored what turned out to be the game winner.
The scoring started in the 16th minute as Patrick Kirsch outleapt his defender to get a head to and convert Denis Grote's corner kick to give Munster the lead.
Grote then got on the scorer's sheet in the 36th minute as Amaury Bischoff played a through ball to the winger behind defense. Grote took a touch and then fired past Erfurt keeper Marcus Rickert to make it 2-0.
Erfurt pulled one back four minutes later as Munster took their collective foot off the gas with Thomas Ströhl beating keeper Daniel Masuch by thumping home Kevin Möhwald's pinpoint cross.
Erfurt was reduced to ten in the 52nd minute when Rafael Czichos was cautioned for a second time.
The score remained 2-1 until Taylor restored Munster's two-goal advantage in the 71st minute. The Ohio native showed off his goal scoring instincts with a perfectly time run to just get a foot to the ball before his defender and up his personal tally to 14 in all competitions.
One-time German national teamer Marco Engelhardt then pulled last-place Erfurt within a goal in the 76th minute with a tap in. But it was too little, too late for Erfurt as Munster held on for the victory.
Taylor and Munster are now in 2nd place with 32 points, just three back of first place Osnabrück. Munster travels to Stuttgart on Saturday to take on Royal Dominique Fennell and the Stuttgart Kickers.
Darmstadt 1 - 0 Offenbach
Preston Zimmerman started for Darmstadt in the Hessian Derby as the Lilies defeated Offenbach to snatch three important points.
Zimmerman and Darmstadt came into the match struggling not having won since late September, which in large part is due to a lack of offensive production; the Lilies have not scored more than once in their past six matches.
Darmstadt once again failed to find the back of the net more than once, but once was enough on Saturday.
Right before the halftime whistle blew, Brazilian Elton da Costa found some space on the right flank and laid off for a streaking Hanno Behrens. The German beat Offenbach keeper Robert Wulnikowski with a right-footed shot from nine yards out for the game winner.
After 72 minutes, Zimmerman's day was over as the American gave way for defensive minded Sebastian Zielinsky.
With the victory, Darmstadt now has 14 points and is in 18th place in the 20 team league.
Up next for Zimmerman and Darmstadt is an away date against Karlsruhe.
Babelsberg 1 - 0 Stuttgarter Kickers
Royal Dominique Fennell returned to the starting for Stuttgart on Saturday, but the Swabians came up short against fellow strugglers Babelsberg.
Fennell returned to the starting lineup after missing out due to suspension; the center half went the distance.
Babelsberg grabbed the game's only goal at the ten minute mark, as Phillip Kreuels took advantage of some shoddy defending and poor marking to poke the ball home past Kickers keeper Daniel Wagner.
Kreuels was then sent to the showers in the 41st minute for unsportsmanlike conduct, after the German buried his elbow into Marcel Ivanusa's brow.
Despite playing a man up for an entire half of action, Stuttgart was unable to equalize.
The loss puts Fennell and Stuttgart in 15th place with 15 points. Next Saturday the Swabians take on Matt Taylor and promotion contenders Preußen Münter.
David Yelldell was an unused substitute in Leverkusen's 3-2 victory over Fortuna Düsseldorf.
Joseph Gyau came on in the dying minutes of Sankt Pauli's 2-0 victory over 1860 Munich.