Nate Jaqua continued to show an impressive goal-scoring form in U.S. Open Cup, notching his eighth career goal in the 98-year-old tournament on Wednesday as the Seattle Sounders beat the Los Angeles Galaxy 3-1 at Starfire Sports Complex. The Sounders have now advanced to five straight Open Cup semis -- dating back to their days as a USL franchise -- and are attempting to become the first team to ever win the Cup three straight years.
"I think we have a lot of confidence going forward. I think that's why we're playing well right now," Jaqua said. "It's just something if you can keep using that momentum going forward."
The Sounders jumped out to an early lead when Jaqua scored in the 4th minute off an assist from Pat Noonan. Jaqua came close on several other occasions, but Josh Saunders was able to make some key saves to keep it close. He couldn't stop Fredy Montero's 25th minute shot, though, that gave the Sounders a 2-0 lead.
Adam Cristman eventually halved the lead and the Galaxy threatened to tie it up, but Sounders goalkeeper Terry Boss was up for the challenge each time. Boss, who improved to 3-0-0 in Open Cup play during his two seasons with the Sounders. Lamar Neagle iced the game away for the Sounders with a 74th minute goal off an assist from Alvaro Fernandez.
Both teams fielded lineups with a fair number of regulars. Landon Donovan started and Juninho, AJ DeLaGarza and Todd Dunivant all went the full 90 for the Galaxy. The Sounders' starting lineup included Fredy Montero, Alvaro Fernandez, Osvaldo Alonso and Jeff Parke.
The Sounders will now host FC Dallas in the Open Cup semifinals, currently scheduled for Aug. 30.