Categorized | Featured, MLS Match Reports

St. Hat Trick’s Day, Sounders Pinch Toronto FC

Posted on 18 March 2012 by Kyle Alm

Recent fortunes of these two teams could not be more disparate. Toronto FC is advancing in the CONCACAF Champions Leagueafter dispatching LA Galaxy in two legs. Sounders were throttled in Mexico by Santos Laguna, 6-1, after taking a 2-1 lead south of the border. Seattle Sounders shook-up their defensive line, starting Nate Burch over Leo Gonzalez as left back and Patrick Ianni over Jeff Parke in central defense. Rest or response to poor performance?

David Estrada found the opening goal in the 17th minute of play. Alvaro Fernandez played a hopeful ball forward into the penalty area. Estrada controlled the ball near the 6 yard line, took a centering touch protecting the ball from Milos Kocic before scoring. It was Estrada’s first goal in MLS play, second in two starts at CenturyLink Field.

In the 25th minute, David Estrada is threatening again, this time a long ball from Fredy Montero sets the goal scorer on a long run from midfield. Torsten Frings was able to slide in and win the ball from Estrada, injuring himself in the process. Sounder fans were calling for a penalty kick, but replay showed that Frings played the ball. Frings was injured on the play, and was not able to continue.

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The only change at the half was Ty Harden for Danny Koevermans.

Estrada found the back of the net in the second half, freed on a long run on the left flank, Estrada raced into the box before putting a little curl on his finish past Kocic. Estrada may have been fortunate that the Assistant Referee was out of position, there were protests of offside from Toronto FC, which isn’t an unusual thing to hear from a defender who has just been scored on. Sigi Schmid, in his post game press conference did mention that Estrada may have been offside for his second goal, an unusual mea culpa for any coach.

Toronto FC were able get a goal back in the 62nd minute, Ryan Johnson tried his luck with a 30 yard shot that went into the upper corner of the net that Gspurning had no chance of getting, assist credited to Miguel Aceval. It was certain a wonderful shot, but one has to wonder at the ease with which Johnson was able to collect the ball and shoot.

3rd hat trick in Sounders history was scored immediately following the Toronto goal, Estrada found himself once again staring down Kocic off of a Fernandez pass and bulging the net for a third time. For Alvaro Fernandez it was his second of the night although he was involved in all three goals, Estrada did the yeoman’s share of the work creating the first goal.

38,709 largest season opener for Sounders in their four MLS seasons.

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