Quarterfinal-bound Sounders beat Marathon 3-1

Quarterfinal-bound Sounders beat Marathon 3-1

SEATTLE (AP) Sammy Ochoa and Steve Zakuani scored first-half goals and the Seattle Sounders beat Honduras' Marathon 3-1 on Wednesday night to finish 4-0 in group play in the CONCACAF Champions League.

Seattle had already wrapped up a spot in the quarterfinals.

Michel Brown scored late in the first half for Marathon, and David Estrada added a second-half goal for Seattle.

The Sounders joined Mexican teams Monterrey and Santos Laguna with 4-0-0 records. They will be the No. 3 seed for the quarterfinal knockout round next March on the basis of their plus-7 goal differential. Monterrey is the top seed at plus-15, and Santos Laguna is No. 2 at plus-12. Seattle's opponent won't be settled until after the conclusion of group play Thursday.

Marathon was second in the three-team group at 1-2-1, and Trinidad and Tobago's Caledonia AIA was last at 0-3-1.

Ochoa opened the scoring in the 23rd minute with his team-leading fourth Champions League goal. Mario Martinez settled the ball near the right corner flag, crossed it into the penalty area, and Ochoa ran onto it from 8 yards straight in front, firing into the back left corner.

Zakuani made it 2-0 just before the end of the 27th minute. He took a short pass from Jeff Parke up the left side, went into the box and curled a 16-yard shot around the left post.

Marathon got one back from Brown on a well-executed counterattack late in the 37th minute. Mauricio sent a long ball down the right side where Tulio Vega caught up with it and took it into the box, drawing Sounders goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann off his line. Vega sent it across the goalmouth, and Brown slammed it into a wide-open net from in front of the left post.

Estrada finished the scoring in the 76th minute.

Hahnemann, a two-time U.S. World Cup team member and 13-year veteran of the English Premier League, made four saves in his first game for his hometown team since signing Sept. 14. It was his first competitive game since Jan. 30, 2011, when he was in the net for Wolverhampton in a 1-0 English FA Cup loss to Stoke City.

Quick Links

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

WASHINGTON  -- The Washington Nationals say they have agreed to a one-year deal with 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit.

The team announced the move Wednesday, along with placing pitcher Joe Ross on the 60-day disabled list as he recovers from Tommy John surgery in July.

The Nationals didn't release terms of the agreement, though a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Monday that it was for $1 million.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal wasn't official at the time.


Benoit is a right-hander who first reached the big leagues in 2001. 

He has played for eight teams, finishing last year with Pittsburgh.

He has 764 career appearances, going 58-49 with a 3.83 ERA and 53 saves.


Quick Links

Capitals Faceoff Podcast: The Caps add two defensemen, problem solved?

NBC Sports Washington

Capitals Faceoff Podcast: The Caps add two defensemen, problem solved?

The Capitals got their trade deadline started early by trading for defensemen Michal Kempny and Jakub Jerabek. Washington has been struggling of late, but do their new acquisitions address the team's weaknesses?

JJ Regan and Tarik El-Bashir evaluate the two trades and talk about where they could fit into the lineup.

You can listen to the latest episode here on the Capitals Faceoff page or with the player below.

Want even more great Capitals coverage? Follow @TarikNBCS and @JJReganNBCS on Twitter!