Seattle, Wash. (March 9, 2011) - Seattle claimed a 3-1 victory over the Colorado Rapids in the Community Shield match, one of the final preseason tune-ups before the Major League Soccer season. Fredy Montero notched two goals and an assist for Seattle, while Colorado’s Jeff Larentowicz converted a penalty kick for the visitors.
After a scoreless first half at Qwest Field, the match broke open with three goals in a seven-minute span.
Sounders defender Jhon Kennedy Hurtado began the run when he headed in a Montero free kick in the 60th minute. Three minutes later, Hurtado fouled Omar Cummings in Seattle’s penalty area, allowing Larentowicz to tie the score from the penalty spot.
Montero gave Seattle a 2-1 lead in the 67th minute, taking a pass from substitute Erik Friberg in the penalty area and finishing inside the far post. The Colombian, who was recently named the MLS W.O.R.K.S. Humanitarian of the Month for March, settled matters in the 78th minute with his second goal of the match.
With the regular season now less than a week away, both Colorado and Seattle fielded their first choice lineups in the match, which benefits Seattle’s charity partners. Colorado’s defense held firm in the first half, as Seattle couldn’t record a shot on goal until the 40th minute.
While Seattle held possession for stretches in the opening stanza, it was Colorado who had the better chances on goal. The defending MLS Cup champions had plenty of chances to take a first-half lead through the forward pairing of Conor Casey and Omar Cummings.
Twice Casey got behind the Sounders’ defense in the early going, forcing a 16th minute save from Kasey Keller in one of those instances. The Rapids forced Keller into four saves in the first half as the score remained knotted at 0-0 going into the break.
After Hurtado got Seattle on the board, Larentowicz briefly evened the score with a well-taken penalty kick, sending Keller the wrong way.
Had this been a regular season match, Colorado might have pushed harder to even the score. However, in the late stages, both coaches substituted liberally to keep key players fresh for the upcoming season.
For the Sounders, the match represented the final preseason tune-up before opening the season March 15 against Los Angeles. The Rapids have one more preseason match to play, Saturday against the Vancouver Whitecaps, before opening the season at home the following weekend against the Portland Timbers.
SEA - Jhon Kennedy Hurtado (Fredy Montero) 60
COL - Jeff Larentowicz (PK) 63'
SEA - Fredy Montero (O'Brian White) 67'
SEA - Montero (TBD) 78'
RAPIDS LINEUP: Matt Pickens (Stew Ceus 46), Kosuke Kimura, Drew Moor (Scott Palguta 71), Marvell Wynne (Tyrone Marshall 71), Anthony Wallace, Brian Mullan (Sanna Nyassi 71), Pablo Mastroeni (Joseph Nane 61), Jeff Larentowicz (Ross LaBauex 68), Jamie Smith (Wells Thompson 71), Omar Cummings (Quincy Amarikwa 71), Conor Casey (Andre Akpan 61).
SOUNDERS LINEUP: Kasey Keller, James Riley, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado (Patrick Ianni 85), Jeff Parke, Leo Gonzalez, Alvaro Fernandez (Pat Noonan 76), Osvaldo Alonso, Brad Evans (Erik Friber 52), Steve Zakuani (Michael Tetteh 81), Fredy Montero (Lamar Neagle 81), Blaise Nkufo (O'Brian White 66).