RSL moves into first place with 2-0 victory

RSL moves into first place with 2-0 victory

SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 Sports) - Kyle Beckerman and Robbie Findley scored goals as Real Salt Lake moved into first place in the Western Conference with a 2-0 victory over Seattle.
SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 Sports) - A battle between two of the hottest teams in MLS proved to be no contest on Saturday night, as goals from Kyle Beckerman and Robbie Findley in a five minute span paced Real Salt Lake to a 2-0 victory over the Seattle Sounders at Rio Tinto Stadium.

The win moved RSL, now unbeaten in five straight, to the top of the Western Conference standings, at least temporarily, with 30 points through 17 games. Seattle, meanwhile, lost for just the second time in their last 10 matches.

"It's a good victory," said Beckerman, who scored his second goal of the season in the 41st minute. "We've had four home games in a row now, and we wanted to at least go 3-1. To be able to get three in a row is big for us."

Both teams came into the match slightly rusty after long layoffs – two full weeks for Seattle and 10 days for RSL. But it was the hosts who settled in first, and broke through in the 40th minute after Beckerman earned a free kick near the top of the box on the left side.

Javier Morales took the kick with a bending shot that deflected off Sounders midfielder Servando Carrasco in the Seattle wall and toward the far post. It fell to Beckerman, who hit a side volley that rocketed past goalkeeper Michael Gspurning and ricocheted off the bottom side of the crossbar and in for the 1-0 lead.

RSL doubled their lead less than a minute out of halftime as Findley scored his 4th goal of the season, tying him for the team lead. Álvaro Saborío’s errant shot landed between Findley’s legs on the right side of goal, and the World Cup veteran turned and put a shot to the far post for a 2-0 advantage.

"We're just on a roll right now," Findley said. "We have this home stretch with a whole bunch of games and we're taking advantage of it>"

RSL's defense dominated the game, as Seattle didn’t even get off a shot on goal until the 74th minute, and never threatened to find the back of the net.

"This one feels good, especially seeing how we played the whole way game," said defender Nat Borchers. "I thought both sides of the ball we were good. We dominated that game and didn't give them many chances. So, we're very happy with our performance."

Eddie Johnson, four days off starting for the U.S. national team here at Rio Tinto, was particularly absent as Borchers and Carlos Salcedo kept him and strike partner Obafemi Martins under wraps.

Real Salt Lake now prepare to host the Carolina RailHawks of the NASL in the quarterfinals of the US Open Cup on Wednesday night. They return to league action on June 29 when they travel to Toronto.

"I think this homestand went really well," said head coach Jason Kreis, whose team went 5-0-1 including U.S. Open Cup matches. "We knew we had a really difficult schedule at the beginning of the season, and a lot of people jumped off the bandwagon at that point thinking that we weren't going to be capable of what we've done in the past years. But now we get at home, put some points in our pocket, and hopefully we're going to ride this momentum and this confidence for the rest of the season."
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