Sounders Insider

Martins' goal gives Sounders Challenge Cup draw

[caption id="attachment_44024" align="alignleft" width="200"] Poster in Charleston promoting Carolina Challenge Cup. Poster in Charleston promoting Carolina Challenge Cup.[/caption]It’s gone final: Sounders and Dynamo playing to a 1-1 draw.

Seattle now 1-0-1 in Carolina Challenge Cup, while Houston moves to 0-1-1. Sounders will conclude the competition at 2 p.m. Saturday, meeting D.C. United (1-0-0 and about to meet 0-0-1 Charleston in the nightcap.)

Here's the game report from the club:

Obafemi Martins scored his team-high third goal of the 2014 preseason as Seattle Sounders FC tied the Houston Dynamo, 1-1, in the second game of the Carolina Challenge Cup on Wednesday afternoon at Blackbaud Stadium. After trading goals in the opening 45 minutes, both teams were held scoreless in the second half. Houston opened the scoring in the 14th minute when a free kick was played behind the Seattle backline to Will Bruin, whose initial cross was blocked. After regaining possession, Tony Cascio found Davis in the box and he slotted it past Stefan Frei for a 1-0 lead.

Martins brought Seattle level in the 44th minute. Lamar Neagle collected a throw-in on the right flank and sent a cross to a waiting Martins at the back post, who nodded the ball into the net. Seattle had a pair of dangerous chances in the opening 45 minutes. In the 30th minute, Sean Okoli got around his defender and fired a shot from just outside the box that was deflected out for a corner. Minutes later, a corner kick was flicked on by Chad Marshall to Zach Scott at the back post, but his header sailed over the crossbar. After Seattle made 10 substitutes at halftime, former Dynamo forward and current Sounders FC trialist Cam Weaver nearly scored in the 54th minute when Kevin Parsemain whipped in a cross from the left side that Weaver headed just wide of the post. In the waning moments of the match, Seattle nearly netted the game-winner when David Estrada collected a pass and crossed to Parsemain in the box, but his flick attempt was blocked by the Dynamo defense and cleared. Sounders FC has gone 5-0-2 over the first seven matches of the 2014 preseason, outscoring opponents 14-5 with two shutouts. The match marked Seattle's second of the week-long, round-robin tournament. Sounders FC will play D.C. United on Saturday at 2 p.m. PT at Blackbaud Stadium. The match will be streamed live on www.SoundersFC.com.

Scoring SummaryHOU - Brad Davis (Tony Cascio) 14' SEA - Obafemi Martins (Lamar Neagle) 44' Seattle Sounders FC: Stefan Frei, DeAndre Yedlin (Jimmy Ockford 46'), Chad Marshall (Jalil Anibaba 46'), Zach Scott (Damion Lowe 46'), Leo Gonzalez (Dylan Remick 46'), Sean Okoli (Tristan Bowen 46', David Estrada 81'), Osvaldo Alonso (Brad Evans 46'), Gonzalo Pineda (Michael Azira 46'), Alex Caskey (Marco Pappa 46'), Lamar Neagle (Cam Weaver 46', Chad Barrett 81'), Obafemi Martins (Kevin Parsemain 46').

Substitutes Not Used: Josh Ford, Andy Rose, Fabio Pereira.

Houston Dynamo: Tally Hall (Tyler Deric 46'), Kofi Sarkodie (Anthony Arena 46'), Eric Brunner (David Horst 46'), Jermaine Taylor (AJ Cochran 46'), Corey Ashe (Mike Chabala 46'), Tony Cascio (Brian Ownby 46'), Ricardo Clark (Alexander Lopez 46'), Boniek Garcia (Jason Johnson 46'), Brad Davis (Andrew Driver 46'), Giles Barnes (Omar Cummings 46'), Will Bruin (Mark Sherrod 46'). Misconduct Summary: HOU - Anthony Arena (caution) 72' All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial

Second half: ... has begun. Big changes for Sounders, with Evans, Azira, Ockford, Remick, Pappa, Parsemain, Lowe, Weaver, Anibaba in. Frei remains in goal.

Halftime: Sounders 1, Dynamo 1. Leo Gonzalez shown yellow card seconds before the whistle.

44th minute: Sounders pull even 1-1 on goal by Obafemi Martins, assist to Neagle.

14th minute: Goal Houston. Bruin's shot is blocked but rebounds to Cascio, who finds Davis, whose left-footed finish beats Frei to far post.

First kick: ... has been stuck. We're under way. Sounders in rave/blue; Dynamo in orange/orange.

Lineups: Sounders first 11: Frei; Yedlin, Marshall, Scott, Gonzalez; Okoli, Alonso, Pineda, Caskey; Martins, Neagle. Sounders reserves: Ford, Ockford, Anibaba, Lowe, Remick, Pappa, Bowen, Evans, Azira, Weaver, Parsemain, Rose, Estrada, Barrett, Pereira. Houston starters: GK Hall; Sarkodie, Brunner, Taylor, Ashe; Casio, Clark, Garcia, Davis; Barnes, Bruin.

Pregame: The Sounders and Houston Dynamo will meet at 2 p.m. today in a second-round match of the Carolina Challenge Cup at Blackbaun Stadium in Charleston, S.C., home of the Charleston Battery.

It will be the Sounders' second-to-last match before the start of their sixth MLS season March 8, when defending MLS Champion Sporting Kansas City visits CenturyLink Field.

I'll be keeping this blog open for major updates through the evening, and I'll also be commenting on Twitter @donruiztnt. I'll have locker room quotes after the match, and provide a few updates from the nighcaps of this double-header: D.C. United (1-0) vs. Charleston (0-1). Seattle concludes its Challenge Cup run on Saturday against D.C.Next up, I'll be back with starting lineups.

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