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Sounders 2, Rapids 0

The SportsXchange

SEATTLE -- The Seattle Sounders survived the knockout stage of the MLS playoffs with a 2-0 win over the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday night in front of 32,204 at CenturyLink Field.

Brad Evans' winner in the 28th minute gave the Sounders all they needed to advance to face archrival Portland in the Western Conference Semifinals, which begin on Saturday. Eddie Johnson added an insurance goal three minutes into stoppage time.

The win snaps a seven-game streak without a victory for the Sounders, who last came out on top on Sept. 13. Seattle is 3-0-1 in its last four home playoff matches.

Goalkeeper Michael Gspurning's blunder in the 85th minute almost cost Seattle the lead. Gspurning stepped out of the box to handle a ball and was subsequently shown a red card for shoving a Colorado player. Backup keeper Marcus Hahnemann was forced into quick action, but wasn't tested as the Rapids' free kick from just outside the box hit a Seattle player and bounced away.

Gspurning will not be available for the Sounders' next game due to the red card.

Johnson went through a defender's legs and finished past Colorado keeper Clint Irwin to ice the game after the Rapids had multiple last-minute attempts. Clint Dempsey played the ball to Johnson for his first assist as a Sounder.

Despite eight first-half shots, Evans was the only Seattle player who was able to break through. The midfielder found himself alone at the top right corner of the box after corralling a weak clearance and finished strongly past a diving Irwin. The Sounders are 6-1-1 this year when Evans either scores or has an assist.
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