SEATTLE—Lady Luck has finally smiled on the Seattle Sounders.
After a rough start to the season, one that featured a slew of bad breaks, the Sounders were finally afforded some of their own in Saturday night's 2-0 home victory against the San Jose Earthquakes, riding a missed Chris Wondolowski penalty kick and goals from Clint Dempsey and Jordan Morris to a 2-0 victory at CenturyLink Field.
“Over 34 games, you hope all those things even out,” said Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid. “When you’re going through a phase where it seems to always be going against you, you get a little bit worried that it’s not going to even out. But over 34 games, it usually does.”
Seattle (4-4-1) almost relinquished a 1-0 lead in the 80th minute after right back Tyrone Mears was whistled for a foul in the San Jose penalty area that set up the normally automatic Wondolowski with a look at the equalizer from the spot. The striker dinged his attempt off the post.
Morris followed up with his fourth goal in four games nine minutes later, slamming the door on San Jose’s comeback bid and moving the Sounders to 4-1-1 since their 0-3 start.
“I think we were due a little bit of luck,” Morris said. “The first few games we were pretty unlucky in some aspects. [Wondolowski] is a great forward. I’m sure he’ll put the next one away but we’re lucky that he hit the post there.”
Luck aside, Morris is officially on a tear. The rookie forward notched the late dagger in highlight-reel fashion, ripping a distance shot between the legs of San Jose defender Shaun Francis and past goalkeeper David Bingham. Morris is now tied for the longest goal-scoring streak ever put forth by an MLS rookie, tying New England’s Damani Ralph (2003) and Patrick Mullins (2014).
“It feels good,” Morris said. “It’s always nice to get a goal, but it’s all about the three points. We’re on a good streak right now – we’ve just got to keep it going.”
The goal from Dempsey was also an encouraging sign for the Sounders. The 32-year-old had yet to score from open play this season but finally broke through in the 26th minute, finishing a cross from midfielder Erik Friberg for his second tally of the year.
“If we can keep creating more quality chances in the attacking third, I think you’ll see us scoring more goals like we did tonight,” Dempsey said. “We probably could have scored a few more than we did, but we’re moving in the direction. Hopefully we can keep building.”