2004 Jun 25

Seattle Sounders Women  2 - 0  Denver Lady Cougars
Starfire Sports Soccer Complex, Tukwila, WA

2' SEA - Rodrick (PK)
63' SEA - Mueller (Rodrick)

Seattle: Meghan Miller; Katie Miyake, Jahra Jalalian (Dana Kimble 46'), Shannon Forslund, Nikki Gamble; Rachel Rodrick, Alicia Milyak (Kelley Schweighart 69'), Joanie Gerpheide (Hayley McNallan 46'), Chalise Baysa; Kim Taylor (Amy Carnell 88'), Brenda Mueller (Erin Redwine 83'). Substitutes not used: Sarah Peters.

Denver: Lauren Mason; Kim Perkins, Kirstin Kiphart (Christina Best 64'), Dari Borsema, Luanne Strom; Megan Beasley, Chrissie Duren (Yaneash Donaldson 64'), Kristen Kemp; Mary Everett, Carolyn Theurer (Christine Nagel 75'), Dristin Doukakis. Substitutes not used: Chellie McCourt, Valerie Patrick.

Match report by Ron Stickney:

The Seattle Sounders Women returned home after 7 matches on the road and beat the Denver Lady Cougars 2-0. Rachel Rodrick converted an early penalty kick earned by Brenda Mueller, then Mueller scored in the second half from Rodrick's assist. Meghan Miller earned the shutout in goal. The match was the first for the Women in the new stadium at Starfire Sports Soccer Complex in Tukwila.

First Half

2' Rodrick (PK). The Lady Cougars gift-wrapped a goal for the Sounders in the opening minute. Seattle's Mueller attacked into the penalty area 45 seconds after kickoff, but was turning away from goal a yard inside the 18-yard line when she was accidentally tripped from behind by Luanne Strom. It wasn't a harsh trip, but there was Mueller suddenly flat on her face and referee Erik Knudsen had no choice but to award the PK. Rodrick sent it low to her left as goalkeeper Lauren Mason guessed the other way. 1-0 Seattle.

Seattle appeared to have another goal in the 6th minute when Kim Taylor got free on the right for a hard shot that forced a diving save by Mason, with the rebound settling in front of goal. Mueller raced in to tap it home as the fans cheered, but assistant referee Soo Hui Um was standing like a statue with the offside flag raised.

During the middle of the first half the Sounders Women weren't looking good. Denver forced a series of about five saves with shots from 18 to 30 yards, and Mary Everett took a nice shot from 25 that curled over goalkeeper Miller and hit the crossbar squarely. Denver would outshoot the Sounders 8-5 in the first half.

For Seattle in the 31st, Mueller got in close for two chances, the best one being when Joanie Gerpheide sprung Mueller from the offside line to waltz in, get around the keeper to the outside, and roll a shot from a fairly steep angle that slowly went just past the far post.

Seattle's Zahra Jalalian, who wasn't having a good day, earned a yellow just before intermission when she roughly knocked Dristin Doukakis over 25 yards from goal. Kristen Kemp lined the free kick on goal, but right into Miller's bread basket.

Halftime: Seattle 1 - 0 Denver

Seattle started the half with Dana Kimble on for Jalalian in defense and newly re-signed Hayley McNallan on for Gerpheide running the right touch line, and the side seemed renewed at both ends of the pitch.

But it was Denver with the first chances of the half. Miller came out to the corner of the goal area for a ball she didn't get, and Everett looked like she would have an easy shot at the open net, but a defender recovered to get a foot on the shot and deflect it out for a corner. In the 59th, Kemp froze her marker with a feint to get open from the 18 but curled it around the far post, missing by a yard.

Then in the 61st Seattle started attacking well and it was all Seattle for the duration. A couple of chip shots were aimed at the bar, and one was just barely reached by Mason to push it away.

63' Mueller (Rodrick). Kimble came up from the back line, received the ball on the overlap, took it all the way to the corner flag on the right, then dropped it along the touch line to Rodrick. Rodrick got free and sent in a perfect cross that sailed over the leaping goalkeeper to the far post, where an unmarked Mueller nodded it in. 2-0 Seattle.

Mueller got in close and beat her marker for another try 2 minutes later, and Mason's foot save popped the ball up and it came down on top of the crossbar as an attacker fouled Mason in a battle for the leftovers. Kelley Schweighart entered the match and soon sent a nice cross to Taylor at the spot, and she headed sharply but just wide. Rodrick fired a rocket at the top near corner from 18 and just missed. The last good Sounders chance was Taylor's in the 88th when she carried up the middle and shot well from 18, but Mason had it covered.

Denver had one last chance in added time when Kemp fed Doukakis for a try from 18, but it went a yard wide.

Final: Seattle 2 - 0 Denver

         Seattle  Denver
Shots:      17       11
Saves:       7        7
Corners:     2        4
Fouls:      10       13
Offsides:    4        0

45' SEA - Jalalian cautioned for knocking Doukakis over 25 yards from goal.

Referees: Eric Knudsen; Soo Hui Um, Ann Hicks.