Colorado’s Deshorn Brown scored twice in the first half hour, including the second-fastest goal in MLS history, and the Rapids steamrollered the Sounders 5-1 Saturday night at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce, CO. Colorado’s rout, set up with a 4-0 first 45 minutes, prevented Seattle from clinching a berth in the playoffs, and left the Sounders embarrassed and dazed.
The loss was more shocking than surprising. It matched the largest margin of defeat in the club’s MLS history and snapped Seattle’s seven-game unbeaten streak as well as an eight-game unbeaten run against the Rapids. The Sounders, who had won their previous three at the stadium, lost for just the fourth time in the last five Octobers.
The defeat also dropped Seattle into second place in the Western Conference standings. The Sounders and Real Salt Lake entered the day tied with 51 points. The Sounders couldn’t add to their total while RSL collected one point in a 1-1 draw with FC Dallas.
The Sounders received their only goal in the 63rd minute from Eddie Johnson, his ninth, off an assist from Marc Burch, long after the issue had been settled.
The outcome could have been even worse for Seattle. If not for a an amazing double save by Seattle goalkeeper Michael Gspurning in the 39th minute, a Colorado shot that banged off the crossbar in the 45th, and another remarkable save by Gspurning in the 79th, the Rapids could have pinned a record beat down on the Sounders.
As it was, Seattle’s 4-0 first-half deficit matched the worst in franchise history.
Just 14 seconds into the match, Brown slid down the right side and whistled a shot past Gspurning for a 1-0 lead. Only Dwayne De Rosario of the San Jose Earthquakes scored a faster goal, tallying in 11 seconds in 2003.
In the 10th minute, moments after Seattle’s Zach Scott was issued a yellow card, the Rapids executed an up-tempo corner kick and Dillon Powers caught Seattle napping with a header for a 2-0 Colorado lead.
Brown came back with his second goal in the 31st minute when he worked his way around DeAndre Yedlin and delivered a low shot that beat Gspurning. In the 42nd, Drew Moore scored off a deflection. That marked only the second time in Sounders history that they had faced a 4-0 deficit in the first half. Colorado had 12 shots on goal in the first 45 minutes to four for Seattle.
The Rapids had their final goal in the 91st minute from Gabriel Torres as Seattle played with 10 men due to a second Scott yellow card.
The Sounders, playing without Clint Dempsey (hamstring) and Obafemi Martins (hip), will have to wait until next week when they host Vancouver for another opportunity to clinch a playoff spot. The Vancouver Cascadia Cup match is Wednesday.
Scott received two yellow cards for the second match in a row and was sent off in the 78th minute. It marked the ninth red card for Seattle this season, a league high.
NOTES: There is a possibility that Johnson could be recalled to the U.S. Men’s National Team Monday. If so, he will miss Wednesday’s match with Vancouver . . . Only good news for the Sounders Saturday: They extended to 13 their streak of consecutive matches without being shut out.
Geez…wha hoppened? It was like the team of the past month was replaced with the team that kicked off the season. They didn’t show up to play at all.