Seattle Sounders 4- FC Dallas 3
It wasn’t easy but the Seattle Sounders are moving on in the 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs. Despite facing a resilient FC Dallas side that came back three times, the Sounders attack maintained their composure and gave their supporters a gripping 4-3 win to start their playoff campaign.
Seattle’s goals were scored by Raul Ruidiaz (18′) and Jordan Morris (22′, 74′, and 113′) who scored the first-ever hat trick in Sounders playoff history. His final goal came off a wild series of events inside the Hoops penalty area with Victor Fernandez finding Raul Ruidiaz with what looked like a golden opportunity for the match-winner. However, Ruidiaz duffed his shot, setting off a mad scramble in the box. Ruidiaz got the ball back hit another shot that looked promising but was cleared by a diving Reto Ziegler. Ziegler’s clear went high into the air where Morris connected with it, hitting a low header bouncing towards the near post.
Dallas themselves had a few lucky plays as well during the match with Reggie Cannon (39′), Matt Hedges (64′), and Bryan Acosta (82′) all finding the back of the net. But their inability to get production out of their forwards continued during this match. Zdenek Ondrasek of Dallas, their starting center forward, was denied twice by Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei who had five saves during the match.
With the win, Seattle moves on to the next round of the 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs. They will not have to wait very long for their next test as they will host Real Salt Lake on Wednesday (7pm, FS1).
All photos are courtesy of Prost photographer Paul Kahl.