VANCOUVER, CANADA - SEPTEMBER 24: Jhon Kennedy Hurtado #34 of the Seattle Sounders chases the ball with Camilo Sanvezzo #37 of the Vancouver Whitecaps during their game at Empire Stadium September 24, 2011 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Nick Didlick/Getty Images)

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Seattle Sounders: Sounders Battle Back Twice For Hard-Earned Draw

Seattle remains unbeaten against their Cascadia rivals in the MLS era, with the Sounders battling back from one down twice to secure a point at BC Place.

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Sounders Steal A Point Thanks To Late Montero Goal

The Seattle Sounders were lucky to escape BC Place with a point on Saturday, as a shockingly poor first-half performance was not punished as it arguably should have been and the Vancouver Whitecaps allowed them back into a game they easily could have put away before the break. Alain Rochat opened the scoring for Vancouver in the 12th minute, streaking down the left flank un-marked and beating Bryan Meredith at the far post.Vancouver continued to create pressure while the Sounders created nothing, with Eddie Johnson's half-chance right before the whistle Seattle's only shot on goal of the first half.

It was a different team that emerged from the locker room to start the second however, and it took less than two minutes for the Sounders to level terms; Eddie Johnson headed past Joe Cannon to finish a tremendous sequence that began with Fredy Montero finding Mauro Rosales in acres of space on the right flank, the captain then finding Johnson in the center of the box with an inch-perfect cross. The Whitecaps were clearly rattled, and if not for several highlight-reel saves from Joe Cannon Seattle may well have had a lead and this game may have looked quite a bit different. Thanks to Cannon's efforts, the Whitecaps were able to steady themselves and work their way back into the game, with the second half settling into a back-and-forth rhythym that saw each team create their fair share of pressure.

Vancouver's second came on a wickedly-curled free kick from Camilo that bent its way past no fewer than six players in the box before sneaking inside Meredith's far post. With the Whitecaps holding a 2-1 lead in the 82nd minute the Sounders looked in grave danger of losing a Cascadia match for the first time since all three clubs moved to MLS. It didn't turn out that way, however, as Fredy Montero would come to the rescue for Seattle yet again. Meredith's long kick forward was flicked on by Johnson to Montero at the edge of the box, and after jinking his way into space the Sounders' talisman chipped a ball into the far corner past a hopeless Joe Cannon. Seattle came very close to finding a winner with what amounted to the last kick of the game when an unmarked Zach Scott met Montero's free kick with a strong header, but the effort went wide, sealing the draw.

It was not the best Sounders performance of the season, but given how poorly the game began Sigi Schmid and his players will likely take it. Seattle is now even with the San Jose Earthquakes on points (though they remain in third place in the Western Conference based on the 'Quakes superior goal difference) and will now turn their attention to the struggling Columbus Crew, who will pay a visit to CenturyLink Field on Wednesday night.

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