TUKWILA, Wash. – Seattle Sounders 2 conceded two second-half goals in their Thursday evening matchup against Swope Park Rangers, eventually falling 2-0 to their Western Conference foes at Starfire Sports Complex.
Midfielder Lebo Moloto scored the opener for the visitors in the 47th minute on a well-taken strike that made it past S2 goalkeeper Bryan Meredith. Nansel Selbol would then add the insurance in the 83rd to pace the visitors.
Despite the disappointing result, S2 did get a look at a couple of young faces that could end up playing important roles for the squad for the duration of their USL season. 16-year-old Academy midfielder Azriel Gonzalez made his first start since the club officially announced his signing earlier this week, while Guy Edoa also made a cameo as a second-half substitute for S2 - the first action for the freshly signed 20-year-old Cameroonian midfielder.
SPR very nearly struck first in the sixth minute after captain Christian Duke unleashed a brilliant volley attempt from distance that screamed past Meredith and looked to be headed into the net. But Duke’s shot would deflect off the post and out of danger, allowing S2 to narrowly avoid falling into the early hole.
Duke almost struck again in the 40th minute off another volley attempt, but Meredith thwarted it by making a diving save and then swatting away a rebound attempt, keeping the match scoreless as it hit halftime.
The scoreless deadlock would be short-lived after that, however, as Moloto gave SPR their opener just after second-half kickoff with a screaming strike that zipped past the outstretched arms of a diving Meredith and into the net, affording the visitors the 1-0 lead.
Gonzalez had perhaps S2’s best look at an equalizer in the 61st after Victor Mansaray found him on a counterattack with an open look on goalkeeper Adrian Zendejas, but the SPR backstop made a good reaction save to avert the threat.
Selbol would put the game away in the 83rd, though, with a beautiful curling strike on a counter attack that he sent past a sprawling Meredith, pushing the score to the 2-0 line that would hold as the final.
With the defeat, S2 are now 7-11-2 on the season and in seventh place in the USL Western Conference. The club will look to right the ship when they return to action this Sunday in a road matchup against Sacramento Republic FC at Papa Murphy’s Park.