With Raúl Ruidíaz and Handwalla Bwana scoring on either side of halftime, Seattle Sounders FC (7-1-4, 25 points) won for the second time in five days over Orlando City SC (3-6-3, 12 points) in midweek action at CenturyLink Field. Tonight’s result moves Seattle up to second place in the Western Conference, three points ahead of third-place LA Galaxy and two points behind league-leading Los Angeles FC. Seattle’s record at home in 2019 improves to 6-0-2, with Sounders FC going unbeaten in 11 consecutive regular season matches inside CenturyLink Field dating back to September 29, 2018.
AUDIO - DOWNLOADABLE POST-MATCH SOUNDBYTES: http://sndrs.com/audio
After returning to the starting lineup on Saturday versus Houston for the first time since March 30 at Vancouver due to a right heel contusion, Ruidíaz wasted little time in finding his scoring ways, converting a perfectly placed Brad Smith cross into the back of Orlando’s net in the 19th minute of play. Harry Shipp was also credited with an assist on the play after initiating the attack, with Ruidíaz bagging his fourth goal of 2019. The strike was the Peruvian’s 17th goal in just 23 appearances since joining Seattle in last year’s summer transfer window.
Seattle doubled its advantage in the 68th minute, as Nico Lodeiro played Bwana cleanly through to goal, allowing the Homegrown Player to score his first professional home goal in front of the Sounders faithful. The second-year player from the University of Washington had two goals to his name coming into tonight’s match from 2018, but both of those were on the road.
Orlando drug one back through substitute Chris Mueller in the 75th minute, as the forward took aim at the top of Seattle’s area in traffic, wrong-footing Stefan Frei on the shot and bringing the Lions back into the match. Dylan Powers was credited with the assist on the play.
After two home matches in the past five days, the Rave Green now head across the country to conclude their week with a contest at Eastern Conference side Philadelphia. Sounders FC faces the Union at Talen Energy Stadium, with kickoff set for 4:30 p.m. PT. Broadcast coverage is being provided regionally by JOEtv, YouTube TV, Sports Radio 950 KJR AM and El Rey 1360 AM.
- With tonight's result, Sounders FC moves to second place in the Western Conference with 25 points (7-1-4), surpassing third-place LA Galaxy. The Rave Green are now two points behind Supporters’ Shield leader LAFC.
- Sounders FC improved to 4-0-1 all-time against Orlando City in MLS regular-season action.
- Sounders FC stretched its home unbeaten streak to 11 games (9-0-2) dating back to September 29 of last season. Seattle matched its third-highest home unbeaten streak with tonight’s result. The club record for consecutive games unbeaten at CenturyLink Field is 14 (10-0-4) from March 16-September 29, 2013.
- Raúl Ruidíaz scored his fourth goal of the season, and is now tied for the team lead with Jordan Morris. He has scored 17 goals in 23 appearances across all competitions since coming to Seattle last summer. Tonight’s marker was his first since March 16 in a 4-2 win at Chicago.
- Handwalla Bwana’s goal was his first in 2019 and the third of his career in 17 regular-season appearances. Two of his three career markers have come against the Lions, as his last goal came at Orlando City on October 17, 2018 in a 2-1 Seattle victory.
- Nicolás Lodeiro now leads MLS with seven assists this season.
- Brad Smith’s assist was his fourth of the season, which ranks second on the club behind only Lodeiro’s seven. He has recorded three of his four assists at CenturyLink Field, with his lone road helper coming on March 16 in a 4-2 win at Chicago.
- Harry Shipp recorded his first assist of the season, and his first since August 18, 2018 in a 5-0 home win against the LA Galaxy.
Seattle Sounders FC 2 – Orlando City SC 1
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Venue: CenturyLink Field
Referee: Dave Gantar
Assistants: Jeff Hosking, Jeremy Kieso
Fourth Official: Farhad Dadkho
VAR: Daniel Radford
Weather: 60 degrees and mostly cloudy
SEA – Raúl Ruidíaz (Brad Smith, Harry Shipp) 19’
SEA – Handwalla Bwana (Nicolas Lodeiro) 68’
ORL – Chris Mueller (Dillon Powers) 75’
ORL – Dom Dwyer (caution) 79’
ORL – Oriol Rosell (caution) 89’
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC – Stefan Frei; Kelvin Leerdam, Román Torres, Kim Kee-hee, Brad Smith (Alex Roldan 86’); Jordy Delem, Cristian Roldan, Jordan Morris (Handwalla Bwana 53’), Nicolás Lodeiro – captain, Harry Shipp (Nouhou 67’); Raúl Ruidíaz
Substitutes not used: Bryan Meredith, Jonathan Campbell, Saad Abdul-Salaam, Will Bruin
Total shots: 14 (Shipp, 4)
Shots on goal: 3 (Three players, 1)
Fouls: 4 (Ruidíaz, 3)
Offside: 3 (Ruidíaz, 2)
Corner-kicks: 5 (Lodeiro, 5)
Orlando City SC – Greg Ranjitsingh; Lamine Sane, Kyle Smith, Shane O’Neill; Sacha Kljestan – captain, Danilo Acosta (Joao Moutinho 85’), Benji Michel, Dillon Powers, Oriol Rosell; Josue Colman (Chris Mueller 73’), Santiago Patino (Dom Dwyer 63’)
Substitutes not used: Adam Grinwis, Cristian Higuita, Sebastian Mendez, Kamal Miller
Total shots: 10 (Mueller/Rosell, 2)
Shots on goal: 1 (Mueller, 1)
Fouls: 11 (Four players, 2)
Corner-kicks: 3 (Colman, 3)
Saves: 1 (Ranjitsingh, 1)
Post-match soundbytes from Sounders FC Head Coach Brian Schmetzer, defender Brad Smith, midfielder Handwalla Bwana and forward Raúl Ruidíaz are available for download via the following link: http://sndrs.com/audio.