Vancouver Whitecaps 0, Seattle Sounders 2 | MLS Match Recap
VANCOUVER, B.C -- Chad Barrett made the most of his first start in seven matches to fire a first-half double that put the Seattle Sounders on their way to a comfortable 2-0 win over the Vancouver Whitecaps at BC Place on Saturday afternoon.
The win sees Seattle (6-3-1; 19 points) close the gap on Vancouver (6-4-2; 20 points) at the top of the Western Conference standings to just a single point, with the Sounders holding two games in hand on their Cascadian rivals.
Seattle got off to the perfect start, taking the lead with their first chance of the game after just five minutes. Clint Dempsey played in Barrett and the striker outpaced Whitecaps defender Kendall Waston to finish low past goalkeeper David Ousted.
Vancouver nearly responded immediately with a looping Pedro Morales effort that Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei did well to tip over his bar.
It was a frenetic start, with neither side having time to draw breath, but the game finally settled down with Vancouver pushing hard for the equalizer, without finding a way through a solid Seattle backline.
As the Whitecaps pressed, the Sounders doubled their lead with seven minutes of the half remaining. Barrett did the damage again, getting on the end of a perfectly weighted pass from Marco Pappa before volleying past Ousted from a tight angle. The finish capped off a 25-pass sequence, the longest unbroken passing sequence by a team this season and the second longest since 2010.
Vancouver tried to take the game to Seattle in the second half, but the visitors were fairly comfortable and untroubled throughout, with neither side able to carve out any clear-cut chances.
The Whitecaps just couldn't find any spark to break down the Sounders' defensive wall and Seattle nearly grabbed a third in the closing stages, but Ousted came up with a big save to keep out substitute Darwin Jones on his MLS debut and keep it to a two-goal defeat.
Vancouver's busy month continues when they head to NASL side FC Edmonton on Wednesday for the second leg of their Amway Canadian Championship semifinal before travelling to Colorado to take on the Rapids in MLS duty three days later (9 pm ET, TSN2 in Canada, MLS LIVE in US). Seattle now head home after three games on the road to face Sporting KC on Saturday evening (10 pm ET, MLS LIVE).