SEATTLE — Eric Hassli scored twice, but people will talk about only the second one: an unbelievable 85th-minute equalizer as Vancouver earned a 2-2 draw with Seattle at Qwest Field on Saturday night. With the Whitecaps reeling after conceding two goals in four minutes, Hassli volleyed a dipping shot from outside the penalty area into the far corner of Kasey Keller’s net to salvage a point for the visitors.
The French designated player, who opened the scoring for the visitors on a penalty kick in the 29th minute, now has six goals in 10 games.
WATCH: Hassli stunner
Mauro Rosales’ goal for Seattle in the 81st minute was followed quickly by Osvaldo Alonso’s tally in the 84th minute, giving Seattle a brief 2-1 lead before Hassli’s improbable rocket sent the visiting Whitecaps fan into a frenzy.
A capacity crowd showed up for the 123rd meeting of the two rivals, a cross-border feud that has stretched four decades, and now, for the first time, is in Major League Soccer.
Vancouver didn’t flinch in the raucous environment of Qwest Field. The Whitecaps claimed the first great scoring chance of the evening, with Camilo testing Keller with a shot from outside the penalty area. Seattle battle back with two great goal-scoring opportunities of their own. Alonso had a volley from distance saved by Joe Cannon in the 20th minute while Fredy Montero couldn’t quite direct Brad Evans’ cross home a minute later.
Vancouver broke through first on the penalty kick. A pass from Jeb Brovsky set up Camilo down the left side, and his clever cutback led to a foul from Alonso. Hassli calmly buried the penalty kick, chipping the ball down the middle as Keller guessed left.
It was just Vancouver’s fourth lead of the season and the visitors did everything they could to protect it. The Whitecaps dodged a bullet when Mike Fucito failed to convert a tough breakaway against Cannon just before halftime.
Seattle brought on two attacking substitutes in the second half to spark the offense, Nate Jaqua and Miguel Montaño. Shortly afterward, Seattle had a good chance in the penalty area snuffed out by Brovsky’s lunging tackle in the 67th minute.
The crowd attempted to urge the Sounders forward against the resolute defense led by Vancouver’s centerback combination of Jay DeMerit and Mouloud Akloul. Vancouver coach Tom Soehn inserted former Sounder Pete Vagenas in the 73rd minute to calm his team, but ultimately it wasn’t enough to repel Seattle.
Rosales’ 81st-minute equalizer, a redirection off a deflected cross from the left, set the stage for a frenetic finish. Alonso staked Seattle a lead after collecting a turnover from Shea Salinas and lashing a left-footed blast into the lower corner.
Then came Hassli’s goal, which will surely be in the running for Goal of the Year.
Seattle next travel to Toronto FC on Saturday, while Vancouver return home to entertain the Philadelphia Union the same day.
VAN -- Eric Hassli 5 (penalty kick) 29
SEA -- Mauro Rosales 1 (unassisted) 81
SEA -- Osvaldo Alonso 1 (unassisted) 84
VAN -- Eric Hassli 6 (unassisted) 85
Vancouver Whitecaps -- Joe Cannon, Jonathan Leathers, Jay DeMerit, Mouloud Akloul, Alain Rochat, Shea Salinas (Bilal Duckett 90), Gershon Koffie, Jeb Brovsky (Michael Nanchoff 85), Camilo, Davide Chiumiento (Peter Vagenas 73), Eric Hassli.
Substitutes Not Used: Terry Dunfield, Greg Janicki, Omar Salgado, Jay Nolly, Kevin Guppy.
Seattle Sounders -- Kasey Keller, James Riley, Jeff Parke, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Tyson Wahl, Brad Evans, Osvaldo Alonso, Lamar Neagle (Nate Jaqua 59), Mauro Rosales (Erik Friberg 83), Fredy Montero, Mike Fucito (Miguel Montano 65).
Substitutes Not Used: Leo Gonzalez, Pat Noonan, Zach Scott, Terry Boss.
VAN -- Alain Rochat (caution; Reckless Tackle) 46+
SEA -- Osvaldo Alonso (caution; Dissent) 47+
VAN -- Camilo (caution; Reckless Tackle) 55
VAN -- Jonathan Leathers (caution; Delaying a Restart) 71
Referee: Mark Geiger
Referee's Assistants: Eric Boria; Steven Taylor
4th Official: Ismail Elfath
Time of Game: 1:51
Weather: Partly Cloudy-and-62-degrees