2002 Aug 10

Seattle Sounders  2 - 1  Milwaukee Rampage
Memorial Stadium, Seattle, WA

2' SEA - Ching (Nguyen)
8' MIL - Angelovski (Russell)
14' SEA - Gregor

Seattle: Preston Burpo; Dick McCormick, Scott Jenkins, Ryan Edwards; Nate Daligcon, Leighton O'Brien, Andrew Gregor, Jason Farrell, Viet Nguyen; Darren Sawatzky (Kieran Barton 77'), Brian Ching.

Milwaukee: Dan Popik; Jeremy Aldrich, Matt Bobo, Destin Makumbu (John Wolniec 46'); Matt Behncke, Angel Rivillo (Miguel Saavedra 75'), Jeff Bilyk (David Lara 71'), Steve Bernal (Bobby Brennan 73'), Jason Russell, Simisa Angelovski (Digital Takawira 50'); Ranko Golijanin.

Match reports from the papers: Times, SCJ.

Match report by Ron Stickney:

All of the scoring happened early as the Sounders held on to a 2-1 lead over the visiting Milwaukee Rampage for 76+ minutes to claim the win. Brian Ching scored on Seattle's first shot, then Sinisa Angelovski tied it up on Milwaukee's second shot. Andrew Gregor netted a free kick in the 14th minute for the match winner from Seattle's second shot, then the defenses shut down the scoring the rest of the way.

With the win, the Sounders clinched best record in the A-League with five matches in hand.

Preston Burpo was back in goal for Seattle after a match off due to a bruised hamstring. He would thrill the fans twice in the second half by just beating an attacker to a 50-50 ball near the edge of the penalty area and then having to weather the crash of the attacker into him.

First Half

Milwaukee had the first shot after winning the ball following the Seattle kickoff, and Angelovski took a pass with space on the right for an 18-yard shot sent a half yard over the bar.

2' Ching (Nguyen). Seattle took a free kick from the halfway line following the first foul of the match and Viet Nguyen received wide right. Nguyen had plenty of space for a cross, which he put in front of Ching, who was on a far post run. Ching beat his marker to the ball and put a 15-yard low shot past Popik and inside the far post. 1-0 Seattle.

8' Angelovski (Russell). Russell's throw-in from the right side near the flag was allowed to bounce to Angelovski 15 yards from the middle of the goal, and he first-timed a shot inside the right post past a diving Burpo. 1-1.

14' Gregor. Gregor was tripped a yard from the top right corner of the penalty area. With Popik centered on his line, Gregor took the free kick with his left foot and bent it to the near side. Popik leaped sideways to get a hand on it but the ball continued to the back of the net. 2-1 Seattle.

Both sides would have their chances the rest of the way, but nobody would finish. In the 20th, Seattle's Leighton O'Brien tried to put a corner kick from the left directly in, but Popik caught it overhead.

For Milwaukee, a throw-in bounced through the area to Ranko Golijanin when a Seattle defender was knocked out of the way and Golijanin's quick shot in close was batted down by Burpo, who then dove on the leftovers.

For the Sounders, Gregor from wide left was just wide of the near post. Nate Daligcon fed a ball to Nguyen who was on a run into the penalty area, and Nguyen sent a shot a yard wide of the lower far corner. Nguyen whipped a pair of really wicked crosses in front of goal, but the defense was first to both of them.

In the 32nd, a Milwaukee square cross was fanned by Jeff Bilyk and fired well over the bar by Golijanin.

In the 38th, Seattle's Nguyen crossed and Darren Sawatzky tried a header out from the near post, but the ball was too high for him and it was headed high and wide.

Just before the whistle Jeremy Aldrich took a 35-yard free kick for Milwaukee but put it a yard too high.

Halftime: Seattle 2 - 1 Milwaukee

Milwaukee were travelling with a full list of substitutes and would use five of them, but a goal would not come.

Seattle had the first chance of the half in the 53rd when an O'Brien free kick from near the left corner of the penalty area was curled to the far corner of the goal area and Ryan Edwards' feet-first try at a volley sent it over the bar.

For Milwaukee, Aldrich's long free kick from the right to the far side was headed from 10 yards by Matt Behncke, but right to Burpo at the near post. Russell's throw-in from the left bounced to Behncke, whose header was well wide right.

A Seattle attack in the 67th saw Ching pass wide right for Nguyen, who carried up the touch line and crossed for an 8-yard flying header by Ching that was a half yard too high.

In the 73rd for Milwaukee, Aldrich sent a 40-yard shot to the bar, where the retreating Burpo had to push it over for a corner.

In the 79th Seattle's O'Brien shot up the middle from 30 yards to force the only save of the half by Popik.

For Milwaukee, substitute David Lara got the ball from a diagonal drop and fired from 15 yards on the left, and Burpo saved. A minute later Golijanin tried an 18-yarder from the left that was also saved by Burpo.

The final chance was Seattle's, as O'Brien took a 25-yard free kick from the left but wasted the chance well above the bar.

Final: Seattle 2 - 1 Milwaukee

        Seattle  Milwaukee
Shots:     11       11
Saves:      5        2
Corners:    3        4
Fouls:     19       14
Offsides:   1        5

17' SEA - Ching cautioned for a late trip of Bilyk at the center circle.
33' MIL - Rivillo cautioned for chopping down Gregor.
33' SEA - Gregor cautioned for retaliating against Rivillo.
60' SEA - McCormick cautioned for a late trip of Rivillo.
70' MIL - Bilyk cautioned for delaying a free kick as he was waiting to be substituted.

Referees: Kai Dehpaneh; Fariborz Khadem, Walter Hefner; Doug Pinski.
Attendance: 2,974