Seattle Sounders 2 - 1 Vancouver 86ers Chance Fry (S) 30' Dominic Mobilio (V) 74' Chance Fry (S) 89'
Vancouver: #29 Paul Dolan (GK), #5 Steve MacDonald, #6 Ian Payne, #19 Todd Rattee, #15 Doug Muirhead, #13 David Norman, #18 Oliver ?, #7 Paul Dailly (72' #21 Carl Valentine), #17 Giuliano Oliveiro (58 #8 Garrett Kusch), #10 Dominic Mobilio, #14 Mickey Ross.
Cautions: Vancouver - 14' Ross (for pushing), 68' MacDonald (for tripping Leonetti just outside the penalty area).
Offside Fouls: none.
Other Fouls: Seattle - 15; Vancouver - 23.
Corner Kicks: Seattle - 2; Vancouver - 1.
Shots: Seattle - 16; Vancouver 7.
Saves: Hahnemann - 3; Dolan - 5.
18-year-old Justin Stoddard, currently a high-school senior from Port Orchard, entered the game for Seattle in the second half. He found himself in several one-on-one situations with Vancouver player/coach Carl Valentine, who at 37 is old enough to be Stoddard's father. (I'm not trying to make Valentine sound old, just emphasizing how young Stoddard is!)
Several of the Sounders faithful gathered in the parking lot before the game to match faces to sigs and hand out song sheets. We spotted Alan Douglas of the 86ers faithful and chatted with him about newcomers to both teams. The new Sounders scarves were distributed to some, including me. They certainly look great and drew several fans during the game who wanted to know how to get one. Mark Coker had the necessary instructions on the flip side of the song sheet.
Seattle shot first when Jason Dunn's throw-in went to Neil Megson near the spot, but Megson's header was just wide right. Then Jason Dunn won a loose ball near the 18-yard line and shot hard and low, but just left. At 28' newcomer Joey Leonetti, recently cut by the MLS Los Angeles Fallacy, received a nice pass behind the defense on the left and shot, but Dolan did well to come out and slide to block. Leonetti gathered up the rebound and dropped to newcomer Tom Bialek, on loan from the NPSL Harrisburg Heat, who shot just wide left.
Vancouver's only good chance in the first half came when a Vancouver free kick made it through to Dominic Mobilio near the left post, but his volley went well over the bar.
At 30' Chance Fry put Seattle up 1-0 when he got loose at the corner of the penalty area with a nice short pass from Jason Dunn and drove a diving shot over a leaping Paul Dolan, who was off his line, and under the crossbar. I was in the 6th row looking right down the line of the shot for a great view of the A-League's first goal of the year.
In the last minute of the first half Megson's wormburner cross from a throw-in play was almost put in at the far post by a sliding Fry, who got to the ball at the same time as a diving Dolan. The ball went over the line just left of the post for a goal kick.
Seattle had the early chances in the second half. Bialek beat a defender with his first touch and ended up alone with the keeper, but his far-post shot just missed. A minute later Jason Dunn received the ball in the right corner, beat his defender while dribbling toward the spot and shot hard, but Dolan made the block. Leonetti intercepted a defensive clearance and shot from 25 yards but Dolan saved. Fry's shot from the right, a premonition of the game-winner, was blocked by Dolan.
At 58' Seattle's 18-year-old Justin Stoddard came on for Bialek, and Vancouver's Garrett Kusch came on for Giuliano Oliviero.
Leonetti beat Dolan to an air cross near the left post, but headed just wide. At the midpoint of the second half, Dolan came out to just beat Fry to a through ball but could only block it. Leonetti's shot from the rebound was blocked by Dolan for another save.
At 71' Paul Dailly launched Vancouver's first shot of the half from the right side, but Hahnemann saved. At 72' Vancouver's player/coach Carl Valentine came on for Dailly.
Jason Dunn's shot from a through ball hit the wrong side of the net. Billy Crook's shot from a poorly cleared ball was just wide left.
At 74' Mobilio received the ball near the left post from Garrett Kusch on a long free kick play. Mobilio turned to the outside, drawing both nearby defenders and the keeper that way, then made a great turn with the ball to earn a chance at a wide-open right side of the goal. Mobilio shot accurately to pull Vancouver even at 1-1, stunning the Sounders fans.
At 78' Fry's quick shot of a loose ball in the area was saved by Dolan. At 81' Vancouver's David Norman shot wide left. At 86' Seattle's Megson shot over from 30 yards.
Megson got the ball again in the 89th minute and curved a nice pass to the right and over the defense. Chance Fry got to the ball first and sent a rising shot into the roof of the net from a sharp angle, giving Seattle a 2-1 lead which would hold.
In the final minute, Kusch's header was saved by Hahnemann and later Valentine's cross was headed sharply but just over by MacDonald.