Jordan Morris scored a hat trick, including the game-winning goal in extra time, to send the Seattle Sounders to a dramatic, heart-pounding 4-3 victory over FC Dallas in Round One of the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs at CenturyLink Field on Saturday.
Raul Ruidíaz scored first for Seattle, while Reggie Cannon, Matt Hedges and Bryan Acosta found the back of the net for FC Dallas.
Ruidíaz opened the scoring in the 18th minute, uncorking a highlight-reel, long-distance golazo that skipped past FC Dallas goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez and into the net to give Seattle the early lead.
Morris then doubled that just four minutes later, finishing off an open look set up by Joevin Jones at the backend of a counterattack to make it 2-0.
Seattle kept the pressure on after Morris’ goal, but FC Dallas managed to halve their deficit in the 39th minute after a cross in the box popped free in front of goal, allowing Cannon to sneak home the finish past Stefan Frei to make it 2-1 at the halftime break.
FC Dallas would strike again, with Hedges cashing home a thundering header in the 64th minute to knot the contest at 2-2. Morris would retake the lead for Seattle with a clever goal set up by a flick from Gustav Svensson off a corner kick from Nicolás Lodeiro, but Acosta equalized just eight minutes from the final whistle to send the contest to extra time.
Morris would send the crowd into bedlam, however, cashing home his third of the day in the 113th minute with a headed finish after a frantic sequence, completing the hat trick and sending Seattle through to the Western Conference Semifinals, which will take place back at CenturyLink on Wednesday at 7 p.m. PT
Tickets for Seattle’s match against the winner of Real Salt Lake – Portland Timbers will go on sale tomorrow at 10 a.m. PT.
It’s been a Comeback Player of the Year-worthy campaign for Morris already, but the 24-year-old tied it all off with Saturday’s ridiculous three-goal outburst, coming through in the biggest moment of the season to send Seattle through. He’s back, he’s hungry and he certainly looks built for another deep postseason run.
SWEET STEFAN FREI
As good as Morris was in this game, Frei might be the actual man of the match. The Sounders goalkeeper made a handful of ridiculous saves and was particularly proficient in extra time, when he pawed away at least three golden chances from the visitors that could have given them the lead. Without Frei, Seattle’s season very well may have been over.
RUIDÍAZ WITH THE FILTH
Ruidíaz hadn’t scored in the last few games of the regular season, but his opener was an unbelievable highlight, with the Peruvian absolutely lashing home the finish from deep outside the penalty box. You can’t hit it much better.