Chivas USA eliminated from U.S. Open Cup
TUKWILA, Wash. (AP) — Nate Jaqua scored twice, Fredy Montero added a goal and the defending U.S. Open Cup champion Seattle Sounders advanced to the title game with a 3-1 victory over Chivas USA on Wednesday night.
Jaqua scored in the 10th minute and again in second-half stoppage time, while Montero connected in the 58th minute. Jaqua has five goals in Seattle’s three Open Cup games.
Steve Zakuani set up the first two goals with perfectly placed crosses from the left side into goalkeeper Zach Thornton’s 6-yard box.
Jesus Padilla scored for Chivas USA in the 68th minute.
The Sounders will host the Columbus Crew in the championship game on Oct. 5 at Qwest Field.
Columbus, the team coach Sigi Schmid guided to the 2008 MLS Cup title before leaving to take the Seattle job, beat D.C. United 2-1 in overtime in the other semifinal.
The Sounders won last year’s Open Cup by defeating United 2-1. If Seattle wins this one, it will be the first MLS team to win consecutive Open Cups.
“It’s sort of ironic that it will be the team I’m coaching now against the team I used to coach,” Schmid said. “I wish it was an easier opponent, because Columbus is a very good team. But we’re going to want to win as equally bad as we would against anyone else.”
Montero started the play that led to Seattle’s first goal when he sent a through ball to Zakuani down the left sideline. Zakuani took it to the goal line, saved it from going out, and crossed it into the 6-yard box, where Jaqua was waiting to blast it into the back left corner past Thornton.
Zakuani helped make it 2-0 when he again flew down the left side, took it toward the penalty area, deked his way around a defender and crossed it to Montero, who tucked it inside the left post from 2 yards in front.
Chivas cut it to 2-1 when the Sounders misplayed a ball deep in their own end. Padilla picked it up in the box and went in unmarked to beat goalkeeper Kasey Keller from 8 yards away. Then Jaqua clinched it during the first minute of stoppage time by knocking in a pass from Roger Levesque – again, from right in front.
“The first goal was all Zakuani — he made a great run,” said Jaqua, who was injured for the first three months of the season. “He was able to find me, and it was a great ball by him. On the last one, Roger put a good ball in. It was just nice to be on the field and get a start and be able to play a whole game.”
The victory — and the goals — were the first ever for the second-year Sounders against Chivas USA. The teams have played four times in the regular season, with two shutout victories for Chivas and two scoreless ties.
While Seattle capped its inaugural season by winning last year’s U.S. Open Cup, Chivas was making a bid on Wednesday to play for its first cup of any kind since the team was founded in 2004.
Updated September 1, 2010