Whitecaps attacker Darren Mattocks scored two second-half goals as Vancouver defeated the Seattle Sounders 2-1 on Wednesday night at Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Ariz., in the preseason opener for both teams.
Attacker Darren Mattocks scored two second-half goals as the Vancouver Whitecaps defeated the Seattle Sounders 2-1 on Wednesday night at Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Ariz., in the preseason opener for both teams.
The exhibition provided a first glimpse at the Sounders’ new three-midfielder, three-forward formation, though a grainy one for most — the live video feed was down, meaning the only way to watch was via the shaky hand of the club’s Periscope account. More clear cut is the pecking order being established, with prospective starters playing the first half, their backups entering in a single, halftime wave and the third string playing an additional 45 minutes against FC Tucson afterward.
Stefan Frei got the start in Seattle’s goal behind defenders Tyrone Mears, Jimmy Ockford, Chad Marshall and Joevin Jones. Osvaldo Alonso was flanked by Andreas Ivanschitz and Erik Friberg in the reworked midfield, and Obafemi Martins, Clint Dempsey and Nelson Valdez lined up left-to-right up top. Besides Ockford — filling in for Brad Evans, who just arrived in camp from national-team duty Tuesday citing hamstring tightness — and withholding judgment until rookie forward Jordan Morris arrives in Tucson this weekend, that could be the starting 11 against Sporting Kansas City on opening night.
Yet it was Ockford who provided the seminal defensive play of the first half, clearing a Whitecaps shot off the line around the half-hour mark.
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The second Sounders shift featured Tyler Miller in goal, Oniel Fisher, Zach Scott, Damion Lowe and Dylan Remick in defense; Cristian Roldan, Michael Farfan and trialist Nate Sturgis in the midfield; and trialist Ben Speas, Darwin Jones and Aaron Kovar up front.
It took Vancouver’s substitutes less than six minutes to take the lead, Mattocks winning and converting a penalty kick. Seattle answered in the 76th on a goal from second-year forward Darwin Jones, only for Mattocks to finish them off in the 89th.
Seattle returns to action Saturday against Portland in Tucson.