2005 Jul 27

Seattle Sounders  3 - 0  Toronto Lynx
Qwest Field, Seattle, WA

Seattle: Preston Burpo; Taylor Graham, Billy Sleeth, Ryan Edwards, Zach Scott (Gabe Sturm 26'); Kevin Sakuda, Leighton O'Brien (Brett Wiesner 67'), CJ Klaas (Jake Sagare 46'), Andrew Gregor (Brent Whitfield 46'); Roger Levesque (Ben Somoza 46'), Welton. Substitutes not used: James Ward, Scott Jenkins.

Toronto: Theo Zagar; Robin Hart, Abraham Francois, Andres Arango (Joe Mattacchione 18'), Rumba Munthali; Chris Williams, Robbie Aristodemo, David DiPlacido, Taty-Sita Matundo (Jamie Dodds 46'), Sean Fraser (Said Ali 46'); Charles Gbeke (Dave Simpson 46'). Substitutes not used: Richard Goddard, Lyndon Hooper.

10' SEA - Gregor
17' SEA - Levesque (Gregor)
33' SEA - Gregor (PK)

Additional match reports: Seattle Times, Seattle P-I, King County Journal, Sounders.

Match report by Ron Stickney:

A ndrew Gregor scored two goals and assisted a Roger Levesque goal, all in the first half, to lead the Sounders to a home victory over the Toronto Lynx 3-0. Preston Burpo notched his league-leading 9th shutout of the season. Gregor was substituted for at intermission, curtailing his chance for a hat trick, but we'll credit him with five-sixths of a hat trick.

First Half

10' Gregor. The first shot of the match came from a Seattle free kick from the top right corner of the penalty area, Gregor territory, and he curled it perfectly an inch over the wall, an inch under the bar, an inch inside the near post, and off goalkeeper Theo Zagar's fingertips into the net. The goal happened while Sounders defender Zach Scott was off the pitch being treated for an injury. 1-0 Seattle.

17' Levesque (Gregor). On a Seattle attack, CJ Klaas served to an open Gregor on the left wing and he first-timed a cross to the penalty spot for Levesque, whose flick-on header beat a diving Zagar and went inside the far post. 2-0 Seattle.

Ex-Sounder Robbie Aristodemo had Toronto's first good shot at 22', firing just a half yard over the bar from 25 yards as goalkeeper Burpo was in position in case it dipped.

At 26' Scott limped off, replaced by Sounders M/D Gabe Sturm. The rookie Sturm is proving to be quite the utility player, effective anywhere from outside back to attacking midfielder. One is not surprised to spot him in front of either goal.

Seattle resumed pressure on Toronto's goal in the 26th minute when a Lynx defender head-flicked a Sounders forward pass into Levesque's path and Levesque dropped a diagonal pass for O'Brien, but O'Brien shot weakly for an easy save by Zagar. Then Welton worked a wall pass with Levesque in the area to earn an 8-yard shot, and Zagar collapsed for the block save.

33' Gregor (PK). CJ Klass had a nice run up the middle, playing a short give and go off Levesque to get free into the penalty area with only Zagar to beat. Klaas was tripped from behind and referee Paul Hooks awarded Seattle a penalty kick. Gregor took a slow trot to the PK and put a calm shot left of Zagar as Zagar was leaning the other way. 3-0 Seattle.

In what would prove to be Gregor's only chance at a hat trick, he sent a 25-yard free kick 2 yards over the bar in the 35th.

Toronto had the last three chances of the half, first a David DiPlacido blast from the top of the arc that was a yard over the bar. Then a 20-yarder was a yard high. In the final minute Abraham Francois volleyed a cleared corner kick but sent it well high and wide.

Halftime: Seattle 3-0 Toronto

Both sides substituted 3 players at the intermission. Seattle nearly scored in the 48th when a Leighton O'Brien corner kick was headed onto the fat part of the top near corner by Taylor Graham. In the 60th Sturm worked a nice wall pass with Welton and served an excellent pass up the middle for substitute Brent Whitfield, whose 15-yard shot was just within the reach of Zagar for a fine parry save. A minute later the speedy Whitfield beat Zagar to a ball sent over the defense and after keeping it alive Whitfield sent the ball to the arc for Sagare, who worked free for a shot from 18, sent just a half yard wide of the near post.

At the other end, Burpo's first urgent call to action came at 63' when he dove forward nicely to take a good cross sent in from Jamie Dodds.

The 68th minute was Ben Somoza's for Seattle. From Sagare's pass, Somoza's 23-yard shot up the middle was palmed over the bar by Zagar. From the ensuing corner kick, taken by Somoza, Graham's header flashed just wide of the far post, leaving Graham holding his head in dismay. Graham has had so many close shots this season that if the bar were a foot higher and the posts were a foot wider Graham would be leading the league in goals.

In the 70th a loose ball popped through the defensive line for Whitfield, whose quick shot was block-saved by a charging Zagar. In the 75th Welton dropped a short pass to Somoza in the arc, and Somoza fired just wide of the right post.

Toronto's first shot of the second half came at 76' when DiPlacido from 20 yards curled a powerful shot at the top left corner, but Burpo had it covered and made the catch look easy when it probably wasn't.

Seattle had a string of three shots starting at 77', first a free kick from the top left corner of the area by Somoza, bent a yard over the top near corner. Then Welton on a nice run up the middle fired just wide of the left post. Seattle's last chance was for Wiesner, who got open for a 20-yarder but shanked the shot badly.

Toronto's best shot of the match came at 82' when Dodds beat Burpo with a power shot that hit the crossbar, bounced down to the goal line, and jumped away from goal. The follow-up shot was flagged offside. Last chance was for substitute Dave Simpson at 85' when he took a cross for an 18-yard shot that he blasted a half yard wide of the lower near corner.

Final: Seattle 3-0 Toronto

          Seattle  Toronto
Shots:      17         8
Saves:       1         5
Corners:     5         2
Fouls:      12        15
Offsides:    2         3

10' TOR - Hart cautioned for holding Welton just outside the penalty area
33' TOR - Zagar cautioned for dissent after Gregor's penalty kick
35' TOR - DiPlacido cautioned for dissent as Seattle were setting up a free kick
52' SEA - O'Brien cautioned for retaliation after being fouled roughly by DiPlacido
54' TOR - Dodds cautioned for a tactical foul against a Seattle attacker in the corner

Referees: Paul Hooks; Nathan Lacy, Joshua Thompson; Jeff Hosking

Attendance: 2,187