With near record breaking temperatures Sunday evening the Sounders Women welcomed the Colorado Rapids to Starfire Stadium. With the Sounders needing a win to guarantee a home playoff match, the game was sure to be competitive.
Possession was 50/50 for the majority of the first half. Neither team had any true scoring opportunities until the 27th minute when Sounders Rachel Merick lobbed a beautiful ball into the box where teammate Janine Beckie found the ball and had a powerful header on frame. Colorado keeper, Kate Scheele got her fingertips on the ball to give the Sounders a corner. The Sounders were not able to capitalize on the corner unfortunately. In the 30th minute Colorado played a brilliant through ball to Kristen Hamilton who beat the Sounder defense and was able to beat Sounders keeper, Erin McNulty at the far post. Colorado went up 1-0. Both teams went into half time hot and tired after a hard fought first half.
With temperatures dropping and shade covering the turf, both teams came out refreshed and ready to finish the game strong. Early in the second half the Sounders proved to the fans that they were looking for a goal to bring the game to a tie. The crowd was lively and enthusiastic despite the high temperatures! In the 56th minute the Rapids were able to beat the Sounders defense with combination of dribbling and a few lovely passes and preserve their lead of 2-0. Hamilton found the pass from teammate Brooke Spence. With back and forth possession between both teams the Sounders looked to push forward and bring the game within one. They were rewarded for their efforts in the 82nd minute when the Sounders were awarded and capitalized on a penalty kick. Sara Campbell remained cool under pressure and struck the ball beautifully past Scheele. Although the Sounders continued to press, the score would end 2-1 in favor of Colorado.
The Sounders are back at Starfire Stadium on July 5th. They will look to maintain their first place position in the W-League standings. The Sounders take on Santa Clarita at 7 pm. Come support your Sounders Women at their last home game of the season. Click here for tickets and further information.