In a clash of MLS heavyweights, Harry Shipp played the surprise hero for the Seattle Sounders on Sunday afternoon, heading home the game-winner in a hard-fought 2-1 win over Atlanta United at sun-splashed CenturyLink Field.
The moment that everyone will be talking about, however, came from his teammate Raul Ruidiaz, who opened the scoring with a jaw-dropping solo effort as the match approached the hour mark.
Up to that point both sides looked to have forgotten their shooting boots, with Shipp one of several players to waste promising chances after good work in the buildup. Then a flurry of action unfolded after Ruidiaz stunned the C-Link crowd.
Josef Martinez responded almost immediately with a thunderous header off an Atlanta corner kick, and minutes later the Sounders flowed forward down the right flank for Jordan Morris to deliver a crisp cross to Shipp's head, the Chicago Fire Homegrown product's header bouncing into the right side netting to secure all three points for the Rave Green.
- THE BIG PICTURE: This one could've broken either way, so perhaps it would be a bit harsh to read too much into the Five Stripes' dour body language and stretches of choppy rhythm. So instead, we'll tip a cap to the dogged Sounders, who flashed the quality they possess in both the top and middle of their roster to bag this W.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: If anyone had forgotten Ruidiaz's value while he was away on Copa America duty, the Peruvian provided an immediate reminder upon his return to Seattle...
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Ruidiaz takes the honor, after a sharp outing capped by the aforementioned moment of magic.