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Reaction to Sounders’ Open Cup win over Kitsap

Post by Don Ruiz / The News Tribune on June 28, 2011 at 11:19 pm with No Comments »
June 28, 2011 11:19 pm

Fucito

Here’s some player and coach reaction to the Sounders’ 2-1 win over Kitsap in the third round of the U.S. Open Cup:

SIGI SCHMID
On the match and the impressive play of the Kitsap Pumas)
“That’s what the Open Cup is all about. That’s what’s given it the tradition that is has in England – whether you’re United or you’re playing Manchester United, you’re able to put in a good battle. Obviously they came in motivated and so forth. Probably right at the time in the game where we took the 2-0 lead, (I thought) maybe the game will tip (in our favor). Then they end up scoring a goal and we give them a shot of adrenaline and it keeps their energy going. I used to have this all the time when I coached UCLA, a Division I school, and we would play a Division II school. For that one game they would muster a great effort. Hats off to them (the Kitsap Pumas), and obviously (Kitsap coach Pete Fewing) should be very proud of the effort they put in today.”

On finding a way to win) “Yeah, we did that. We got a couple of good goals from Mike Fucito. I think the guys in the room would tell you it wasn’t their best game. You’re always looking for guys in games like this, looking to see who steps up and who shouts out their name to you as the coach. You know, hey, he’s the guy that you have to use the next time around. So that’s something you look for all the time. I thought (Pat) Noonan came in and I thought he had an impact. His passing helped open things up for us and allowed us to get that second goal. So we keep working and we get ready for L.A. (Galaxy) on Monday (July 4).”

On the closeness of the game) “I think they came in with a great deal of effort. When you look around at the scores – I think Dallas won in the 95th minute on a goal, I think Columbus lost, (LA came from behind to win 2-1). All these games are like that. It’s just the way it is. And do you say, ‘Well, maybe you’re not sharp?’ or ‘Are they extra sharp?’ I think it’s a little bit of a combination of both. But I don’t want to take anything away from the Kitsap Pumas’ effort. I thought they put in a great effort. They had a good game plan. They would compact the back and keep one high – that guy posed some problems for us early on, he made some runs, got in behind us at times, and made it difficult for us to play by holding nine guys back. So it was a good game plan, a good effort.”

On Kitsap goalkeeper Bryan Meredith, a fourth-round draft pick by Seattle this year) “I thought Bryan was solid. I thought he came up with some big saves right at the point when the game is 2-0. He allowed them to stay in the game because he came up with a couple of big saves. I think one was against Fucito, one against Montano, one against Jaqua. So he came up with some big saves, for sure.”

On Osvaldo Alonso in the lineup) “Well, Ozzie didn’t play (against New England on Sunday), so we were only talking about playing him 45 minutes tonight. But it wasn’t a real taxing game…for a guy like Ozzie who is really fit. I just said to him, ‘Just sit in midfield. Don’t go running around like crazy. Just sit in there and keep us organized. Keep the ball flowing from one side to the other.’ And I thought Ozzie did that for us. So yeah, he expended energy, but probably didn’t expend as much energy as he does in a normal MLS game.”

On if tonight’s effort by Fucito can push him over the edge in MLS games) “Well, I think any time we play in the electricity kits we should look about playing him because it seems like in Champions League whenever we wore the yellow, he seemed to score goals. And I told him that tonight before the game, I said, ‘When we’re in the electricity you seem to score goals.’ And he got two goals tonight.”

MIKE FUCITO
On scoring both goals)
“I always like coming out and playing in this atmosphere, it’s so cool. They’re a pretty good team. We knew they were going to come out with a lot of energy and I thought it was a pretty good game. Good for other guys to get some time and show well. It was nice to finally score some goals.”

On if this is the type of performance that can get you rolling) “Yeah, absolutely. These are not easy games and getting those two goals gives me a little bit of confidence going forward. And I knew once I got one, hopefully the rest would start coming. Hopefully now it translates to MLS games.”

On Kitsap giving Seattle a handful and if that’s what they expect from a team like that) “Absolutely. Pete Fewing has those guys prepared and just the atmosphere – it plays well for the other team, too, because they get pumped up and they have some fans. The field plays a little smaller so they were able to pack it in a little bit but I thought in the second half we did a better job of opening them up and using the wide spaces.”

On if he’s happy with how Seattle played) “I think we can always improve. I thought we should keep a clean sheet so we’re probably not happy about that. But I thought for the most part, we finished chances. We could have had a couple more at the end there. So it could have been four, five to one but obviously we’re happy with the win.”

Sounders keeper TERRY BOSS
On what he thought of the game)
“I thought we missed a lot of chances. Bryan Meredith played really well. I was happy to see him make some big saves and keep his team in the game. He’s a guy I care about a lot. We spend a lot of time together in preseason so it’s always nice to see one of your kind doing well, you know? Obviously, it would have been nice to have put the game out of hand earlier and not let them back in the game and make a game out of the last 30 minutes or so. We need to do a better job of finishing our chances and not fall asleep on the other end, I think. We gave them a fair amount of chances that were pretty dangerous and could have made the game drastically different had they capitalized on them.”

On the tournament, where any team can make a game out of any match) “Pete (Fewing) is a great coach and he had them extremely motivated, I’m sure. And this tournament is great. It’s a tournament you love playing in because you can win and they definitely had some momentum in there. At the end of the day, we just knew we had to win and playing on a smaller field like that makes for an action-packed game when a team wants to get the ball forward and run off of their big man. So it was definitely nice to get the win.”

On conflicting emotions with Meredith playing well, but Seattle not quite playing as well as it could have) “I’m proud of him and he’s a good kid. I’m happy to see him do well but I want to win more than anything. At the end of the day, that only goes so far. You can be proud of him but yeah obviously I want to win. End of story.”

Kitsap coach PETE FEWING
On Bryan Meredith’s game)
“Bryan Meredith had a great game. I’m sure Sigi (Schmid) is saying, ‘Holy crap, we got to get Bryan Meredith more time with us than with the Pumas.’ But in the second half especially he was real good.”

On staying close early) “That was the goal – to find the rhythm of the game, the pace of the game, which we did. It’s too bad we gave up [the first goal]. I thought our marking was a little soft on that first goal. That was the frustrating part. And then to come back and get a goal, I don’t think we ever gave up. So I’m proud of the effort of the guys. I’m proud we showed we can play. That’s the thing that for our players, for them to be able to play and look like soccer players and come out here and not be intimidated by the pressure of the game or the atmosphere of the game but to come out and get the ball and roll it around, I thought our guys did really well. I’m proud of our guys tonight.”

On if the difference in the game) “Well, I was pleased that we created all the chances that we created, you know what I mean. So I thought our quality was good in the attacking third when we settled down a bit. Yeah, they finished two chances, we finished one. Each team had a lot of chances. But I liked them. I would say we had four good ones in the first half and we had two or three…If Mark Lee continues to run, that’s a tap-in. So they put their two chances away and we only put one away but both teams had chances. And again, I like the fact that we tried to play them straight up. We adjusted our lineup and were smart about it. We did not sit back. We never sat back where it was – we had to get numbers behind the ball but when it went out, we tried to go out with numbers on the attack too.”

Kitsap defender DAN SCOTT, brother of Sounder Zach Scott
On the game)
“You know I thought we weathered the storm the first 20 minutes of each half. I think once we found our rhythm, we had our opportunities definitely. It’s just a matter of putting it in the back of the net. Nick [Besagno] has a great one at the end, he had the first one in the first half. Bryan Burke had a couple. At the end of the day, you have to take care of your chances. But I thought overall we settled down and I thought we knocked the ball around nicely. It was definitely a battle defensively. [Mike] Fucito played a good game. But overall, we want to win. So it’s definitely unsatisfying when it comes down to it.”

On if he’s proud) “I’m proud of the effort. Overall, I’m proud of the effort. I’m not proud of the result. But at the end of the day, you know, I thought we left it on the field and that’s all you can ask for.”

On if he thinks fans are surprised that Kitsap only lost by one) “I hope they shouldn’t be. I think we’re a good team and I think it showed tonight that we can play – that we can play good soccer. I mean the level’s definitely a bit higher. But once, mentally, we got around in the game I thought we had our chances, like I said, but we just didn’t finish. But I mean, at the end of the day, I’m fairly proud of the effort we put forth on the field.”

On getting in a shoving match with his brother Zach Scott) “You saw that? Zach’s a strong kid. He’s got old-man strength. So it’s one of those things where you have to work a little harder when you’re going against your older brother. But I thought he played well overall as well. He had a couple opportunities on corner kicks but at the end of the day, they’re an MLS team and they showed why they’re at that level.”

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