VANCOUVER — The Cascadia Cup is coming home.
The Seattle Sounders defeated the Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 at BC Place on Saturday evening to extend their MLS-record winning streak to nine matches and capture the Cascadia Cup for the first time since 2015. Raúl Ruidíaz had a first-half brace, and the Sounders withstood a flurry of Whitecaps attacks to advance to fifth place in the Western Conference standings with a match in hand.
“I absolutely love that group of people that came here, and all the fans in Seattle I shouldn’t cut you guys short,” said Head Coach Brian Schmetzer. “They made noise the entire game from when we walked out in pregame warmups to the end, and I’m so happy that George [the trophy] is going back on those supporters’ buses. I hope they drink out of him, I hope they enjoy them, because that’s for them. That’s truly a supporters’ trophy and I’m very happy that they are the recipients tonight.”
The Sounders are approaching all-time MLS glory for a win streak. All nine wins have come since Ruidíaz began playing. The defense has allowed a league-best 28 goals. This team is firing on all cylinders in every facet, and has shown no real signs of slowing down.
Ruidíaz celebrates one of his two goals on Saturday night | USA Today Sports
“Nine wins in a row is impressive,” said Schmetzer. “We understand that it’s pro sports, that that streak is going to come to an end at some point, we just didn’t want it to happen tonight. We wanted to make sure that look if it started off a little rocky, don’t panic. We’re a good team, it’s going to come back to you guys. It’s like riding a bike. You guys will jump back on and things will start clicking again. And that message got through to them because I thought after some of those rocky moments they found their composure and were able to come out with three points.”
Added Ruidíaz: “I’m really surprised by all of this. But we’re more than just a group, we’re a family. That’s why everything is coming out excellent.”
It’s been three years since the Sounders last took home the Cascadia Cup, and they did it yet again at BC Place. For goalkeeper Stefan Frei, who finished with four saves on Saturday, reclaiming the title for the supporters was an added bonus on this historic run.
“It’s a trophy,” said Frei. “It’s really nice to have accomplishments like climbing out of holes and streaks and things, but those will all be forgotten. What stays is history, trophies and filling the cabinet. Today was a big win to fill the cabinet and get a trophy that I know our fans will really appreciate so they can celebrate.”