The Sounders divided up for seven training days today in Ventura, Calif.
Meanwhile, way up the coast, the San Jose Earthquakes worked at Santa Clara University. That's the session I attended, and I'll write a bit about it here soon, and then will write a story from my interviews for next week ... before the Sounders and Earthquakes actually meet on the pitch for the first time.
Meanwhile, the Sounders' staff provided this report on what went on down the coast:
The following players participated: Osvaldo Alonso, Nicola Andelic*, Evan Brown, Ryan Caugherty*, Jeff Clark*, Ben Dragavon, Brad Evans, Chris Eylander, Taylor Graham, Kevin Guppy, Patrick Ianni, Danny Jackson, Nate Jaqua, Kasey Keller, Stephen King, Quavas Kirk*, Sebastien Le Toux, Roger Levesque, Fredy Montero, Lamar Neagle, Sanna Nyassi, Leighton O'Brien, Vini Oliviera*, Ryan Pore*, James Riley, Zach Scott, Kyle Schmid*, Khano Smith, Nathan Sturgis, Tyson Wahl, Adam West, Steve Zakuani.
*players who did not practice with team first week in Renton
The following players were not present: Mandou Bojang (will rejoin team in Seattle on Feb. 18), Michael Fucito (hamstring), Freddie Ljungberg (rehabbing in Sweden), Jarrod Smith (hip flexor, rehabbing in Seattle), and Peter Vagenas (recovering from arthroscopic surgery). Vagenas did arrive for lunch at the hotel today to greet the team.
Assistant Coach Ezra Hendrickson played in place of the injured Jared Karkas (hamstring)
Technical Director Chris Henderson was in attendance and participated in the running and passing drills.
General Manager and Owner Adrian Hanauer watched from the sidelines.
Training returned to Day One's location at Ventura College. The rain subsided; overcast with temperatures in the low 60s.
Training opened with running, stretching and passing drills, followed by four teams of 8-v-8 on two fields measured 55 by 48 yards. One field had regulation-size goals. Winner stays on, loser moves to the other field, featuring two pop-up goals on each side separated about 25 yards.
Afternoon session will be weight training.
Four teams comprised of eight -
Blue Side: Adam West, Lamar Neagle, Sebastien Le Toux, Leighton O'Brien, Taylor Graham, Roger Levesque, Quavas Kirk, and Chris Eylander in goal.
Purple Side: Vinicius Oliveira, Stephen King, Steve Zakuani, Nathan Sturgis, Brad Evans, Evan Brown, Patrick Ianni, and Kevin Guppy in goal.
Orange Side: Fredy Montero, Osvaldo Alonso, Nate Jaqua, Sanna Nyassi, Danny Jackson, Zach Scott, Ezra Hendrickson, and Kasey Keller in goal.
Green Side: Ryan Pore, Jeff Clark, Khano Smith, Tyson Wahl, Kyle Schmid, James Riley, Ryan Caugherty, and Ben Dragavon in goal.
7 games were played on the regulation goal.
1st game: Purple-v-Blue ended in 0-0 draw, with Blue holding field on coaches decision.
2nd game: Orange defeated Blue, 1-0, on goal from Montero drop-in over the head of Eylander.
3rd game: Orange defeated Green, 1-0, on goal from Montero holding ball inside box and delivering lower-right past Dragavon.
4th game: Orange defeated Blue, 2-0, on two goals from Montero. The first came on an Eylander penalty inside the box for tripping. The second came on a tackle from Nyassi, stripping the ball from Adam West, and passing to a running Montero, who delivered on one-touch lower-left.
5th game: Orange defeated Green, 3-0, on two goals from Montero and one from Nyassi. The first came on a Montero one-on-one with Dragavon, faking left and going center. The second came on from a Ezra Hendrickson assist over the top of the defense to Nyassi on the right side, and shot left for the goal. Montero scored the final goal of the game on a pass from Alonso lower-right.
6th game: Purple defeated Orange, 1-1, on a penalty shootout. Alonso assisted on Montero's seventh goal of the day. Brad Evans scored the equalizer from 20 yards, shooting from the left side upper-right. Two stops from Guppy in the shootout secured the Purple win.
7th game: Green defeated Purple, 1-0, on a Oliveira cross to Caugherty, who went lower-right past Guppy.
Montero, 21 years old, scored seven goals on the day.
SIGI SCHMID SAID
On Fredy Montero's seven goals: "That's his quality. If you give him a half a chance in the box, and what he is able to do, it's not the amount of goals, it's the type of goals. There's a shot from distance. There's holding the ball in the box and slipping into the corner. There's getting on the end of a cross. There's different ways he can score goals. He's alert. He's aware in the box. That's what makes him so dangerous."
On Montero and Nate Jaqua playing together: "Trying to pair them up. Today, the teams were picked by themselves, by the players. But when we try and play, we try and pair them up, so they start to understand each other and get to know each other a little bit better. The biggest thing with an expansion is you really only learn that once you really get into game situations and play with each other in games, where everybody's adrenaline is at its optimum level. You're alert. You're sharp. And then you see how people start to read each other. That takes a period of time. Their understanding of each other is going to be much better in game ten then it's going to be in game one or two."