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Sounders fall in final exhibition despite absence of Adu
Special to The Seattle Times
The Under-20 U.S. Men's National Team was without 15-year-old phenom Freddy Adu last night, but had enough firepower to post a 4-1 victory over the injury-plagued Seattle Sounders in a soccer exhibition at Husky Soccer Field.
It was the last exhibition match for the Sounders, who open the regular season against the Portland Timbers on Saturday at 7 p.m. at Qwest Field.
Chad Barrett, a native of Beaverton, Ore., notched assists on the U-20 team's first three goals, helping the squad erased an early 1-0 Sounders lead while outshooting Seattle 16-6.
"We've been playing a lot over the last couple of months, and it's all started to mesh," said Barrett, a member of Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire who previously had played on the UW pitch as a member of the UCLA team.
"We've been lacking that final pass, but tonight it seemed like we were getting the ball to people in a dangerous spot, and they were finishing."
Sounders coach Brian Schmetzer was probably wondering if he'd have enough bodies to finish the match. With prospective starters Danny Jackson and Craig Tomlinson lost for the season to knee injuries, Schmetzer last night saw midfielder Andrew Gregor hobble off with a broken foot that will sideline him for eight weeks.
Ryan Edwards, Preston Burpo and Taylor Graham were also limited by minor injuries last night, though they're expected to play Saturday.
"We had hoped to get a good 90 minutes out of the potential starting 11," Schmetzer said. "With five starters out, it was difficult for us to do anything but look at the young guys and see what they've got."
Barrett's short cross set up the U.S. team's first score, a 30-yard laser by Benny Fielhaber that tied the score 1-1 in the 32nd minute.
Seattle appeared poised to tie the match when defender Scott Jenkins gathered in a free kick and unleashed a point-blank shot in heavy traffic. But U.S. keeper Justin Hughes made a sliding grab before the ball crossed the line.
Moments later, Barrett made a steal in the Sounders' end, drew Banas out of the goalmouth along the right wing, then delivered a pass for a point-blank shot by Danny Szetela into an open net.
"We had a great opportunity there," Schmetzer said. "It didn't happen for us, they go down and score, and there's your game."
The Sounders jumped in front 1-0 in the 28th minute. Seattle forward Brent Whitfield ran down a deflected shot and delivered a low shot from 18 yards.
The Sounders announced they will host Real Salt Lake, the MLS's expansion team, in a May 11 exhibition at 7 p.m. at Qwest Field.
Copyright © 2005 The Seattle Times Company