Los Angeles Galaxy defeat Seattle Sounders in Game 1

November 12, 2012

Carson, California -- After a thrilling playoff road win in San Jose, the Los Angeles Galaxy hosted the Seattle Sounders on Sunday in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals. For the Sounders, the game marked the club's first trip to the conference Finals. The veteran Galaxy meanwhile, was making its fourth straight appearance.

Neither team had many scoring chances in the first half. The Galaxy earned a free-kick in the 14th minute following a Landon Donovan sprint with the ball along the sideline that would have left Sounder's goalkeeper Michael Gspurning in a difficult position, but Donovan was fouled by Jhon Kennedy Hurtado. To the amusement of Donovan, Hurtado only received a yellow card. The free-kick play did not threaten Seattle.

In the 31st minute, Osvaldo Alonso had a go with a shot from 25 yards out, but it was straight into the hands of Galaxy keeper Josh Saunders.

In first half stoppage time, the Galaxy would get a goal that players and coaches would consider vital to the game and to the series.

Sean Franklin received the ball wide and sent in a pass to Christian Wilhelmsson, who was running away from goal. Wilhelmsson, knowing that Donovan was behind him, heel-flicked a pass to him. Donovan dribbled past the Sounders defender and sent a lob pass back across the box to Robbie Keane. Keane then headed the ball past a diving Gspurning to give LA a 1-0 lead at half.

In the second half, the Galaxy sensed that their chance to blow the series wide open was in front of them and they went after it.

In the 64th minute, Keane sprinted with the ball from the center of the field and sent in a great through ball to Franklin. Franklin played the ball to the front of goal to an open Mike Magee. After his performances in the playoffs the past few years, Magee is earning the nicknames of "Mr. November" and "Magic Mike," and he delivered again, scoring to give LA a 2-0 lead.

Minutes later, the Galaxy made it 3-0 and sent the soldout crowd into a frenzy, as Wilhelmsson followed up a deflected shot, and Keane put the final touch on the ball to make sure. After the game, Keane joked with reporters about possibly taking away Wilhelmsson's goal, and said that his childhood coach always told him to make sure the ball goes into the back of the net.

In the locker room, Galaxy players and coaches all expressed joy with the big start to the series, but warned that they must remain focused for Game 2 in Seattle this Sunday. Given that the Sounders beat LA 4-0 in Seattle earlier in the season, the Galaxy should be well aware of Seattle's ability as a team.

Game 2 can be seen Sunday at 6 p.m. on ESPN, with the winner of the series on aggregate advancing to the 2012 MLS Cup.

By Brian Kowalski
Staff Reporter for The Daily Sports Herald

No comments:

Post a Comment

We encourage all intelligent, passionate comments. Please refrain from any ignorant, racist, or offensive rants.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...