Perfection continued for the Seattle Sounders FC on Wednesday night at sold-out Starfire Sports Stadium in Tukwila.
Behind a pair of goals by forward Nate Jacqua and two assists from Steve Zakuani, the Sounders turned back Chivas USA in a U.S. Open Cup semifinal game 3-1 in front of 4,547 fans.
With the win, Seattle improved its record in U.S. Open Cup games at Starfire to an unblemished 11-0. More importantly, however, is the fact that with the win, the Sounders earned their second consecutive berth in the U.S. Open Cup championship game. Seattle will play Columbus for the title at 8 p.m. on Oct. 5 at Qwest Field. Columbus knocked off D.C. United 2-1 in the tournament’s other semifinal.
Adding to Seattle’s history in the tournament — and run of perfection — is the fact that it now has the chance to repeat as champions. No team has repeated as U.S. Open Cup champions since the New York Pancyprian-Freedoms in 1983.
Jacqua didn’t waste any time helping the Sounders get on the board, taking an assist from Steve Zakuani in the 10th minute and promptly depositing it into the back of the net for an instant 1-0 advantage. Zakuani proved to be in a giving mood on Wednesday, assisting Freddy Montero in the 58th minute and helping the Sounders take a commanding 2-0 lead. Chivas USA — a Los Angeles-based team — cut the deficit to 2-1 in the 68th minute, when Jesus Padilla found the back of the net on an assist from Justin Braun.
That was as close as Chivas USA would get.
Seattle iced the game in the 92nd minute, when Jacqua headed in a score on an assist from Roger Levesque.
Now it’s on to the finals for the Sounders. Last September, Seattle knocked off D.C. United in Washington for the championship.
SEATTLE SOUNDERS vs. COLUMBUS CREW
• WHAT: U.S. Cup championship match
• WHERE: Qwest Field.
• WHEN: Oct. 5, 8 p.m.
• TICKETS: To purchase tickets, go to www.seattlesoundersfc.com