Sounders Advance In Playoffs For First Time

Full Time
0 - 1
Nov 8, 2012 7:00pm
Location: Sandy, UT
Attendance: 19657
Broadcast: Sirius 94, ROOT Sports (Outside Seattle), NBCSN, KONG 6/16, La Gran D 99.3 FM, KIRO Radio 97.3 FM

SANDY, Utah - Sounders FC advanced to the Western Conference Championship for the first time in franchise history with a 1-0 win over Real Salt Lake in the second leg of the Western Conference Semifinal at Rio Tinto Stadium. Mario Martinez scored the game's lone goal, giving Seattle a 1-0 aggregate win after a scoreless draw in the first leg.

The Rave Green will face the LA Galaxy in a two-game aggregate series for the Western Conference Championship, with the first leg in Los Angeles on November 11 and the second in Seattle on November 18. Tickets for the second leg are now on sale through or by calling 800-745-3000.

After 80 minutes of scoreless play, Martinez put the away side up with his first ever goal for Sounders FC. Brad Evans made a run into the RSL final third and laid the ball off to Fredy Montero at the top of the box. Montero chipped a pass over an RSL defender to Martinez on the left side of the box, and the Honduran one-timed a low blast inside the far post to break up the scoreless tie.

It was just the fourth playoff goal in franchise history, and also ended a 390-minute scoreless drought between Seattle and Salt Lake.

Sounders FC goalkeeper Michael Gspurning made nine saves-topping his season-high-en route to the shutout. The Austrian has now recorded a clean sheet in his first two career MLS playoff games. In the 68th minute, he came off his line to break up a Fabian Espindola breakaway, and in the 76th he dove to smother an Alvaro Saborio shot from outside the box. With RSL pressing late, the 6'5" netminder withstood the barrage of crosses and corner kicks, most notably rising and swatting a Saborio header over the crossbar in the 90th minute.

Martinez-acquired on loan from Real Espana on August 1st-performed well in place of injured captain Mauro Rosales. The 23-year-old nearly scored in the 31st minute when he bent a free kick around the wall and hit the crossbar.

Seattle advances in the MLS Cup Playoffs for the first time in the club's four-year history, and the result marks the second ever playoff win. The game ends what was a five-game series between Sounders FC and RSL in 2012. Between regular season and playoffs, the teams finished tied at 1-1-3, with just one goal scored by either team.

Scoring Summary:

SEA - Mario Martinez (Fredy Montero, Brad Evans) 81'

Seattle Sounders FC - Michael Gspurning, Adam Johansson, Jeff Parke, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Marc Burch, Christian Tiffert (Andy Rose 73), Osvaldo Alonso, Brad Evans, Mario Martinez (Zach Scott 87), Fredy Montero (David Estrada 89), Eddie Johnson.

Substitutes Not Used: Marcus Hahnemann, Alex Caskey, Steve Zakuani, Sammy Ochoa.


Real Salt Lake - Nick Rimando, Tony Beltran (Luis Gil 85), Jamison Olave, Nat Borchers, Kenny Mansally (Jonny Steele 86), Ned Grabavoy, Kyle Beckerman, Javier Morales, Will Johnson, Paulo Junior (Fabian Espindola 58), Alvaro Saborio.

Substitutes Not Used: Kyle Reynish, Kwame Watson-Siriboe, Yordany Alvarez, Sebastian Velasquez.


Misconduct Summary:

SEA - Osvaldo Alonso (caution) 51'

Referee: Chris Penso
Referee's Assistants: Kermit Quisenberry, Frank Anderson
4th Official: Drew Fischer
Attendance: 19,657
Time of Game: 1:53
Weather: Windy, Cloudy, and 58 degrees

Sounders FC Stats Real Salt Lake
1 Goals 0
9 Shots 14
5 Shots on Goal 9
9 Saves 4
13 Fouls 10
5 Corners 7
3 Offsides 0
Sounders FC
No. Name Position
1 Michael Gspurning Goalkeeper
8 Marc Burch Defender
31 Jeff Parke Defender
34 Jhon Hurtado Defender
5 Adam Johansson Defender
15 Mario Martinez Midfielder
6 Osvaldo Alonso Midfielder
13 Christian Tiffert Midfielder
3 Brad Evans Midfielder
17 Fredy Montero Forward
7 Eddie Johnson Forward
25 Andy Rose Midfielder
Real Salt Lake
No. Name Position
18 Nick Rimando Goalkeeper
29 Kenny Mansally Defender
4 Jamison Olave Defender
6 Nat Borchers Defender
2 Tony Beltran Defender
5 Kyle Beckerman Midfielder
20 Ned Grabavoy Midfielder
8 Will Johnson Midfielder
11 Javier Morales Midfielder
23 Paulo Jr. Forward
15 Alvaro Saborio Forward
7 Fabian Espindola Forward
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