Sounders 2, Galaxy 0

Fredy Montero kept getting denied when it came to snapping his

scoreless streak the easy way.

He finally got his first goal of the 2012 season with one of the

most electric marks of his young career.

Eddie Johnson scored for the second straight game, directing

home a header just before halftime, Fredy Montero scored his first

goal of the season on a 35-yard strike early in the second half,

and the Seattle Sounders finally got the best of Los Angeles with a

2-0 win over the Galaxy on Wednesday night.

”When you have the opportunity to shoot from that distance you

just try,” Montero said. ”Thank God that ball went into the

net.”

Johnson’s goal in the 40th minute capped a half of missed

chances for Seattle and came off a long cross from Mauro Rosales.

It also snapped a lengthy scoreless skid for Seattle at home

against the Galaxy and led to the Sounders’ first win over Los

Angeles in MLS play since 2009.

Montero’s goal was a stunning strike from distance in the 48th

minute. Given space in the midfield, Montero’s drive found the

opposite upper corner out of the reach of Los Angeles goalkeeper

Bill Gaudette.

The result was a needed win for Seattle’s psyche after coming up

winless in six straight league matches against the Galaxy.

”It was good for us because sometimes you have a team that you

call your, `boogey team’ – a team that sort of gives you a problem

and for some reason you can’t seem to jump over them,” Seattle

coach Sigi Schmid said. ”L.A. was that team for us a little bit,

but we always felt we had confidence that we could beat them and

today it showed.”

Los Angeles was playing without star midfielder David Beckham,

striker Robbie Keane and goalkeeper Josh Saunders, all of whom

stayed back in Los Angeles. Both the Galaxy and Sounders are

playing three games this week. Even though the Galaxy decided to

rest some of their stars and fall six points back of Seattle early

in the season, the Sounders put out nearly all of their regular

starting 11 and finally began to get the kind of impact they hoped

from the Johnson-Montero combo up front.

”It’s a difficult week with travel and playing on this surface.

We wanted to keep some players fresh for Saturday,” Galaxy coach

Bruce Arena said. ”That’s a decision I made. Whether it makes

sense or not remains to be seen when we play on Saturday. . We

didn’t think we were going to be able to play 11 players in three

games this week. We have to rotate some players.”

Seattle traded away two young prospects in order to acquiring

the rights to Johnson before the season began. His Seattle

introduction was slowed by a hamstring injury but he followed up

his first goal of the season last Saturday in Chicago with another

strong performance against the Galaxy.

Johnson’s goal capped a half where all the good chances came

from the Sounders. Johnson’s right-footed shot from inside the

penalty area in the 10th minute was kicked away by the right-foot

of Gaudette. About 10 minutes later, Montero had a point-blank look

at an open goal, only to see his rebound attempt of Johnson’s shot

deflect off Gaudette’s leg.

Montero finally got his first mark of the season and there was

little luck involved. His speculative attempt was perfectly placed

in the far upper corner and snapped a scoreless string that dated

back to last October against San Jose.

”I was waiting for this. I was looking to score a goal from Day

1,” Montero said. ”This is soccer. You don’t know exactly the

reason, but finally I scored.”

Starting Seattle goalkeeper Michael Gspurning aggravated a sore

right hip and was replaced at halftime by Bryan Meredith in net.

Gspurning had a quiet first half and the Galaxy’s first real shot

on net didn’t come until the 62nd minute when Landon Donovan sent

his left-footed shot directly into the stomach of Meredith.

Initially, Wednesday night was to be an audition of sorts for

Beckham as he continues his quest to be one of three players over

the age of 23 added to Great Britain’s roster for the London

Olympics later this summer. Last week, Great Britain coach Stuart

Pearce indicated he would travel to Seattle to see Beckham play in

person.

But Beckham remained home in Los Angeles with the Galaxy having

played Dallas last weekend and Beckham playing 90 minutes. The

Galaxy host New York on Saturday and the plan of giving Beckham the

Wednesday off falls in line with how the Galaxy handled three-game

weeks last season.

”This wasn’t a game we were out of by any means. It’s a long

season we have a number of older players who have played a lot of

games,” Donovan said. ”When you combine travel, clearly the turf,

and then traveling home, it becomes pretty difficult. Those are the

decisions that were made. We had enough guys to get the job done,

just didn’t do it.”

Follow Tim Booth on Twitter: http://twitter.com/ByTimBooth