Sounders FC will get its shot at an unprecedented fourth consecutive U.S. Open Cup title.
Seattle earned its way to a fourth straight final with a 4-1 win tonight over Chivas USA before a sell-out crowd of 4,500 at Starfire Sports Stadium.
Awaiting is Sporting Kansas City, which advanced Wednesday with a 2-0 win at Philadelphia.
The clubs will meet in the Open Cup final on Aug. 8 at Livestrong Sporting Park in Kansas City. It will be Kansas City’s first appearance in the final since 2004, when the club won its only cup.
"It’s real, so we can talk about winning four in a row," coach Sigi Schmid said. "Obviously it will be difficult, being away from home, playing at Kansas City. It would have been great playing at home because I think we would have had more than we had last year. I think to set this record of four in a row, I think, who knows, maybe we’d have sold out the whole place at 60,00. But we’re going to Kansas City. It means the first one we won on the road, and we’re going to try to win the fourth one on the road."Seattle dominated its semifinal from the start.
The lead came in the 31st minute, when Osvaldo Alonso threaded a pass to Eddie Johnson just as he sprinted through the Chivas defense.
Johnson then won his one-on-one match with goalkeeper Dan Kennedy from about 20 yards.
Seattle doubled its lead early in the second half. In the 46th minute, Fredy Montero was taken down in the area by Chivas defender Rauwshan McKenzie. Alonso nailed the penalty kick, making it 2-0.
Chivas got on the board in the 74th minute, when substitute Cesar Romero rebounded his own shot from in front of the goalmouth.
However, Seattle responded with goals provided from a pair of late substitutes.
The first came from Brad Evans in the 83rd minute, the other from Sammy Ochoa in the 88th.
The result ran Seattle’s U.S. Open Cup unbeaten streak to 18 matches.
The Sounders return to MLS action at 1 p.m. Sunday, visiting the New York Red Bulls.
88th minute: GOAL Seattle. Sammy Ochoa makes it 4-1.
Looks like it will be Seattle at Kansas City for the title on Aug. 8.
83rd minute: GOAL Seattle. Brad Evans finishes nice sequence for Sounders, who lead 3-1.
61st minute: Evans in for Cato.
60th minute: A free kick scooted through to Meredith in the 58th minute. Score remains 2-0, Seattle.
Attendance: 4,500, a sellout.
46-47th minute: GOAL Seattle. Montero taken down in the box. Alonso nails PK. Seattle, 2-0.
Second half: ... has begun.
Halftime: Sounders 1, Chivas USA 0.
Stats much more tilted to Seattle than I had anticipated. Sounders lead shots, 7-0, shots on goal, 3-0, and corners 3-1. Also fouls, 10-6.
40th minute: Johnson got another chance after his goal. Still, Seattle, 1-0.
Ref clearly on the nerves of Sounders, and this crowd.
31st minute: GOAL Seattle. Eddie Johnson makes brilliant run into space and fires in from 20 yards. Assist Alonso on sweetly timed through ball. Seattle, 1-0.
First goals always important, but maybe especially so tonight against defensive-oriented Chivas now trailing on road in loser-out match.
Through 30: Zach Scott got some power on a header after a Caskey corner kick in 25th minute. Sent over bar, but probably best chance so far.
Through 20: Perhaps slight drift of play in Seattle's direction. Still scoreless.
Through 10 minutes: No particular flow or control yet. Ref calling tight. Scoreless.
First kick: We're under way. Chivas in red&white/blue, Sounders in cyan.
Game was sold out as of yesterday. Stands full. Lots of standing room on the berm and in beer garden.
Lineups: Sounders starting: GK Meredith, D Scott (Cpt), D Hurtado, D Ianni, D Gonzalez, M Cato, M Alonso, M Rose, M Caskey, F Montero, F Johnson. Reserves: Ford, Parke, Burch, Evans, Ochoa, Fernandez, Rosales.
Chivas starters: GK Kennedy, D Califf, D Riley, D McKenzie, D Villafana, M Minda, M Zemanski, M Gavin, F Moreno (Cpt), F Cardozo, F Angel. Reserves: Melia, Valencia, Vagenas, Smith, Romero, Townsend, Correa.
That other semi: Sporting KC advances past Philly, 2-0. SKC will host the Open Cup final Aug. 8 if vs. Sounders, and either Aug. 7 or 8 if Chivas USA.
Arrival: It is a beautiful and warm evening at Starfire -- as much Southern California as Seattle -- for tonight's U.S. Open Cup semifinal match between Sounders and Chivas USA.There is no TV, but the game will be streamed at SoundersFC.com. We'll keep this blog post open all evening for pregame, in-game and postgame news. And we'll also have updates on Twitter @donruiztnt.