Tukwila, Wash. - The Sounders FC greeted the Vancouver Whitecaps FC to the Cascadia Summit with three gifts on Sunday - all of which were goals in a 3-2 defeat for Seattle at Starfire Stadium.
The Whitecaps scored twice in the first 12 minutes and Seattle bounced back, but could never find the equalizer and finished the weekend with losses to Vancouver and the Portland Timbers.
“We handed them three gift-wrapped presents and they tucked them away,” defender Zach Scott said. “We’re working hard to create open chances and we’re not putting those away and then we’re handing teams goals as well and it’s frustrating in that sense.”
Seattle started the match strong, but it was Vancouver who struck first. Taylor Graham misplayed a bouncing ball and Omar Salgado chased it down to go 1v1 with goalkeeper Terry Boss. Graham tried to recover, but Salgado slipped the shot past Boss before Graham could slide in and Vancouver took a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute.
In the 12th minute, the Whitecaps unwrapped another of Seattle’s gifts as Russell Teibert sent a ball into the box from the left side. Boss tracked it and appeared like he was going to make the save, but it slipped through his arms and into the net for a 2-0 lead.
The third came just after the start of the second half. Boss charged out of his box to get to a ball on the defensive right side, but Salgado was able to chip the ball over him toward the net. Pat Ianni got his head to it to knock it down, but the ball fell to Camilo Sanvezzo who shot it into the net for Vancouver’s third goal in the 47th minute.
“It’s disappointing when you give up the goals that we gave up because I don’t that they were goals that were earned to a certain extent. Not to take anything away from what Vancouver’s doing or how they play,” Sounders FC head coach Sigi Schmid said.
Seattle did fight back after falling behind 2-0, getting a goal from Roger Levesque in the 45th minute to dwindle the halftime deficit to 2-1. Off of an Erik Friberg corner kick, Scott knocked the ball down to Ianni and the ball bounced to Levesque with his back to the goal. He turned with a left-footed strike and found the back of the net.
Then, trailing 3-1, Levesque set up Miguel Montano for his first goal of the preseason. David Estrada back-heeled a ball to Levesque in the box and Levesque played it to the back post, where Montano touched it into the open net to make it 3-2 in the 77th minute.
That fight has Schmid encouraged, despite the disappointing results of the weekend.
“I believe in the group we have. I think the group we have sitting in the locker room is a good group. It’s a talented group. It’s a group that’s capable of playing good soccer. Right now we haven’t shown it,” Schmid said. “We’ve made some woeful mistakes and I think they’ll be the first ones to admit that. They need to step out next time and show that our belief in them is warranted.”
Like Schmid, the players have been open that they need to get the results on the field, especially with the season opener on March 15 just around the corner.
“I make no excuses for the way I play. I own up to everything that happens on the field and I know that every single guy in there will as well,” Scott said. “We’ve just got to turn that corner, period.”
The Sounders will face the Colorado Rapids in their final preseason test on Wednesday at Qwest Field in the Community Shield match. Kickoff is slated for 7 pm with ticket proceeds benefiting the Sounders FC charity partners.
Sounders FC - Roger Levesque (Pat Ianni, Zach Scott) 45; Miguel Montano (Levesque, David Estrada) 77.
Whitecaps FC - Omar Salgado 6; Russell Teibert 12; Camilo Sanvezzo 47.
Sounders FC - Taylor Graham (caution) 10.
Whitecaps FC - Nizar Khalfan (caution) 18; Joe Cannon (caution) 81.
Sounders FC - Terry Boss, Zach Scott, Taylor Graham (David Estrada 46), Pat Ianni, Tyson Wahl, Roger Levesque, Servando Carrasco, Erik Friberg (Osvaldo Alonso 76), Michael Tetteh (Steve Zakuani 76), Mike Fucito (Lamar Neagle 40), O’Brian White (Miguel Montano 61).
Whitecaps FC - Jay Nolly (Joe Cannon 46), Wes Knight (Jonathan Leathers 62), Michael Boxall, Greg Janicki, Bilal Duckett, Nizar Khalfan (Cornelius Stewart 62), Alexandre Morfaw (Terry Dunfield 64), Gershon Koffie, Russell Teibert (Jeb Brovsky 83), Camilo Sanvezzo (Long Tan 66), Omar Salgado (Atiba Harris 87).