SEATTLE, Wash. - Obafemi Martins scored the lone goal as Seattle Sounders FC (8-3-1, 25 points) defeated the San Jose Earthquakes (2-4-4, 10 points), 1-0, Saturday night in front of 49,746 fans on the Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field.
Stefan Frei recorded his third shutout of the season and Gonzalo Pineda recorded his fourth assist as Seattle remained atop the league table - two points clear of Real Salt Lake.
In the eighth minute, Pineda played Martins behind the defense on the left side of the box, and the striker chipped a first-time ball from a difficult angle out of Busch's reach and into the far side netting.
The Seattle attack pressed throughout the match, holding a 16-8 advantage in total shots, including five on goal. Lamar Neagle led the team with four shots while Martins and Marco Pappa each had three shots.
In the 27th minute, Martins found Neagle in the box with a deep cross, but Neagle's powerful volley was stopped by San Jose goalkeeper Jon Bush.
Sounders FC had a pair of dangerous chances late in the match. In the 84th minute, Osvaldo Alonso fired a left-footed shot from the center of the box that was blocked. Two minutes later, second-half substitute Chad Barrett nearly scored after settling a cross from Neagle, but Barrett's right-footed shot was saved by Bush.
Seattle extended its home winning streak to a league-best four games, and has lost once in the past eight (6-1-1) outings, dating back to April 5.
Sounders FC returns to action next Saturday with an away match against Cascadia Cup rivals Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. PT at BC Place.
SEA - Obafemi Martins (Gonzalo Pineda) 8'
Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei, Jalil Anibaba, Zach Scott, Chad Marshall, Leo Gonzalez, Lamar Neagle (Andy Rose 90+1), Osvaldo Alonso, Gonzalo Pineda, Marco Pappa (Dylan Remick 87), Obafemi Martins, Kenny Cooper (Chad Barrett 70).
Substitutes Not Used: Marcus Hahnemann, Djimi Traore, Micheal Azira, Tristan Bowen.
TOTAL SHOTS: 16 (Neagle 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Neagle 3); FOULS: 7 (7 players, 1); OFFSIDE: 2 (Cooper 2); CORNER KICKS: 6 (Pappa, Pineda 3); SAVES: 1 (Frei 1).
San Jose Earthquakes - Jon Busch, Brandon Barklage, Ty Harden, Jordan Stewart, Shaun Francis, Cordell Cato (Sam Garza, 80), Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi (JJ Kovall, 88), Sam Cronin, Khari Stephenson, Atiba Harris, Billy Schuler (Mike Fucito 75). Substitutes Not Used: Bryan Meredith, Adam Jahn. TOTAL SHOTS: 8 (Stephenson 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 1 (Stephenson 1); FOULS: 4 (Stephenson 2); OFFSIDE: 2 (Cato, Shuler 1); CORNER KICKS: 2 (Cato 2); SAVES: 5 (Busch 5).
SEA - Gonzalo Pineda (caution) 90'
Referee: Jair Marrufo
Referee's Assistants: Claudio Badea, Matthew Nelson
4th Official: Baboucarr Jallow
Time of Game: 1:50
Weather: Cloudy and 63 degrees