Nate Jaqua struck early, Fredy Montero added another first-half goal, and Lamar Neagle provided some insurance late, as Seattle Sounders FC remained unbeaten in Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup tournament-related games, topping the L.A. Galaxy, 3-1, on Wednesday night in a quarterfinal match in front of 4,322 fans at Starfire Sports Stadium.
With the victory, Sounders FC advance to the semifinals and will host FC Dallas in a semifinal match at Starfire Sports Stadium on either August 30 or 31.
The Rave Green are now unbeaten in their last nine matches (6-0-3) over all competitions. The two-time defending Open Cup champions improve to 11-0-1 all-time in the tournament and related qualifiers.
Sounders FC put enormous pressure on the MLS-leading Galaxy early in the match, earning a 2-0 lead within the first 25 minutes of play.
In the fourth minute, Jaqua took a pass up the middle from midfielder Pat Noonan and caught Galaxy goalkeeper Josh Saunders leaning the wrong way. Jaqua knocked a left-footed shot into the net from near the top of the box to go up one goal.
Jaqua, the 2010 U.S. Open Cup Player of the Tournament, has now scored eight career goals in Open Cup play, including seven in his three seasons with Sounders FC.
Montero tacked on another goal in the 25th minute. Jaqua held control of the ball on the left side of the box and played it back to Montero in the middle. Montero pulled the ball with his left foot and slid a shot past Saunders, putting Seattle on top 2-nil.
The Galaxy had several chances on goal in the first half before finally beating Seattle goalkeeper Terry Boss late in the period.
In the 40th minute, Galaxy midfielder Chris Birchall sent a cross for Adam Cristman who directed a shot into the left side of the net, cutting into the deficit to 2-1.
Neagle tacked on another Sounders FC goal in the 74th minute. Alvaro Fernandez stole the ball at midfield and streaked down the right. He found Neagle on a run into the box and Neagle pounded a shot past Saunders from short range.
Sounders FC dominated the flow of play, leading the Galaxy in total shots (23- 13) and shots on goal (11-7).
Seattle's Boss recorded five saves, while Saunders was busy throughout the night, racking up eight.
Sounders FC returns to MLS play on Saturday when they face the reigning MLS Cup champion Colorado Rapids at 1 p.m. PT on the Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field. Then, on July 20, The Rave Green will host European giants and 19-time England champion Manchester United, as they visit The Emerald City in a highly-anticipated friendly.