VANCOUVER - The timing was right for the Vancouver Whitecaps to play the best team in the league. Barry Bonds Jersey
. Sebastian Fernandez scored a pretty goal on a booming shot from about 30 yards out as the Whitecaps beat the Seattle Sounders 1-0 in Major League Soccer play Saturday night. The win restored some shine to a Vancouver team that had looked tarnished in their last two games, including a loss that ended a franchise record eight-game undefeated streak. The Whitecaps also snapped a two-game scoreless streak. "Any game you play against Seattle is always tough," said Vancouver coach Carl Robinson. "The game came at the right time. "We havent performed to our level (the last two games). We havent been bad but I dont think weve been good. We got back to work this week and refocused on certain things." Seattle coach Sigi Schmid said Vancouver was the hungrier team. "Hats off to them," he said. "I thought they played with a lot of passion because of the (past) results that they had and we didnt really match that completely until the second half. "We were around but we didnt put shots accurately enough on goal. This is a bump in the road. That is all it is." The Sounders played without several of their best players, including leading goal scorers Clint Dempsey (returning from the World Cup) and Obafemi Martins (injury). Seattle also was missing midfielders Osvaldo Alonso and Gonzalo Pineda who both were suspended due to an accumulation of yellow cards. Schmid refused to use the missing players as an excuse. "We had enough quality on the field to get a result and to play," he said. Vancouver midfielder Gershon Koffie said the Whitecaps still had to beat a good team. "We dont really think about the players that are missing," he said. "We were all about the three points. "We got it." The Whitecaps controlled most of the first half against their Cascadia rivals. They managed to keep possession of the ball and passed with authority. In the second half they buckled down defensively when Seattle began to press. "The second half was about rolling the sleeves up, grit and desire and heart," said Robinson. There was a large contingent of Seattle fans among the loud, flag-waving sellout crowd of 22,500 at B.C. Place Stadium. Fernandez scored in the 12th minute when he took a pass from Pedro Morales and launched a rocket that sailed past the outstretched fingers of Sounders keeper Stefan Frei. "Pedro gave a good ball to me," said Fernandez, who scored for the third time this season. "I turned with the ball and there was space. "It was a good opportunity. I just tried to shoot." Morales was a thorn in the Sounders side all night. In the 19th minute he lofted a free kick from a sharp angle that landed in the box. The ball sat tantalizing for a few seconds but was cleared before a Whitecap could touch it. In extra time of the first half, Morales struck a curling shot that Frei stopped. "If he doesnt perform, we dont play well," said Robinson. "He went into areas and got the ball. "His range of passing was excellent. He calmed it down, he slowed it down, he won free kicks." Morales said the win helped prove the young Whitecaps can keep pace with the best teams in the league. "It was extremely important," he said through an interpreter. "It was a chance to show our fans what we are capable of. "If we continue with this attitude we will keep growing as a team." The loss snapped a three-game win streak for Seattle, who came into the game unbeaten in five matches. Seattle continues to lead the MLS standings with 35 points from a 11-3-3 record. Vancouver and Seattle tied in the teams previous meeting in May. The Whitecaps remain fifth in the Western Conference but climbed to within a point of fourth-place Colorado. Vancouver has 25 points from a 6-3-7 record. One of the games prettiest plays came in the 33rd minute when defender Steven Beitashour sent a perfect cross to a charging Erik Hurtado, but the forward sent the shot high and wide. The Sounders found their legs in the second half. Midfielder Lamar Neagle came close in the 52nd minute, firing a shot that drifted just wide of the Vancouver net. Seattles Tristan Bowen, a second-half substitution, banged a shot in the 60th minute that took a dangerous bounce before being gobbled up by Whitecaps keeper David Ousted. Notes: Morales wore the captains armband with Jay DeMerit out with an ankle injury. … Beitashour returned to the Whitecaps lineup for the first time since May 10 after playing for Iran at the World Cup. … Vancouver midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker says the birth of his daughter Scarlet has "completely changed" his life. … The Whitecaps play at home next Saturday against Chivas USA, travel to Toronto for a game July 16, then play in Salt Lake July 19. Willie McCovey Jersey
. Chris Heisey connected for his first grand slam and Devin Mesoraco homered and drove in a career high-tying four runs as Cincinnati took advantage of Tampa Bays depleted pitching staff for a 12-4 victory on Sunday. Bruce Bochy Jersey
. -- Canadian Erik Bedard pitched into the fifth inning in his bid to win a spot in Tampa Bays rotation, helping the Rays beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-3 on Saturday. http://www.baseballsfgiantsshop.com/authentic-mark-melancon-giants-jersey/
. Canadas Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse will reunite at this weekends season-opening World Cup at Canada Olympic Park as they begin their buildup to the Winter Games in Sochi.TORONTO - When Rudy Gay was traded just over a week ago, he left the Raptors with 18.6 shots and 35 minutes to be redistributed nightly. He also left them with a vacancy in their starting lineup. So far, sophomore Terrence Ross has been the primary beneficiary. "It [is] probably the biggest opportunity of my career," the Raptors second-year guard said of his new role in the teams starting five. "Just taking advantage of it [and] making sure I capitalize on things is big for me." Ross promotion is one that came together organically in the aftermath of the Gay trade. He had been clamouring for more playing time, according to Casey, but Ross insists he never formally asked the coach to start. "I kind of just knew when Rudy left it was kind of like, okay we only have me and Landry [Fields] so one of us is going to start," he recounted after Monday mornings practice. "So either way, [I was] going to get big minutes. I just knew it was an opportunity for me to go out there and show what I can do." On the eve of the trade, Casey opted to start the more experienced Fields at the three-spot. Fields played 31 scoreless minutes in Los Angeles that night and has logged less than 20 minutes in three games since. Ross, the next man on the Raptors depth chart, got the call after that. Playing 38 minutes - the most of his career - in his first start of the season Tuesday, Ross earned mixed reviews. He was inconsistent, the ongoing theme of his 95-game NBA career, and as a result, Casey was hesitant to commit to him as the teams starter going forward. "Well see," the Raptors coach replied, asked about Ross future with the first unit at that time. Three days later, Ross earned a second start despite a pre-game slip up in which Casey suggested he might be a better long-term fit playing with Greivis Vasquez in the second unit. Whatever the message was, it was received. Ross responded with 24 points - two off his career high - on 10-of-16 shooting on Friday. His promotion was not intended to be permanent, it still may not be, but Ross doesnt plan on giving it up without a fight. "I know Id do anything and everything to keep my position I have right now," the 22-year-old promised. "Its not all about scoring, its about just really doing whatever [Casey] asks and playing hard on defence, making the right passes and not having any mental lapses." "Hes got to keep it going," Casey emphasized after Ross breakout performance against the 76ers. "Hes got to continue it, thats his biggest challenge as a young player in this league, is to stay hungry, stay driven, stay consistent. Consistency is what hes fighting for, hes a talented young man but hes fighting consistency." Saturdays surprising win in Chicago, his third straight start, was another step in the right direction. Struggling with his shot, Ross went 4-for-12 from the field including 1-of-9 in the first half but found other ways to make positive contributions while on the floor. He grabbed six rebounds, recorded a career-best four aassists and earned praise from his coach for his work on the defensive end. Brandon Belt Jersey
. . The hope for Casey and the Raptors is that Ross is beginning to develop into a more consistent and versatile player. Too often in the past, he has been rendered unusable, a liability on the court when his jump-shot wasnt falling or opposing defences would take him out of his comfort zone as a slasher. He has the tools required to be more than a one-dimensional player, now its about putting them all together. "Ive always been well aware of his athletic ability but I wasnt aware of his shooting ability," said new teammate Patrick Patterson. "Im definitely glad hes taking this starting role to the next level. Hes not satisfied with just starting, he wants to be a great basketball player and Im definitely happy for him." In DeMar DeRozan, Ross has a willing mentor, a player who has successfully overcome similar limitations. DeRozan - not unlike Ross, who is only a couple years younger - was once, in the not-so-distant past, considered to be one-dimensional. In his fifth season, DeRozan is blossoming into a complete player, averaging career highs in points, assists and three-point shooting, also growing on the defensive end. "Both of them are similar," Casey said of his two young wing players. "Similar body types, similar games, fighting to find consistency. DeMar went through the same things his first couple of years in the league. Two guys in similar positions, same skill set being around each other can only benefit." The similarities go beyond the court. Overwhelmed as a rookie, Ross, quiet and reserved by nature, is starting to open up and get more comfortable in his NBA skin. DeRozan went through the exact same evolution as a young man. Now, the 24-year-old has grown into a leader and has taken Ross under his wing. "Through training camp, every time we practice, he guards me, he goes against me and I dont let up on him," DeRozan said of Ross, sounding like a grizzled veteran. "I try to go at him as much as I can so he can take on the challenge every night when he goes out and plays against another player, it wont be as hard." "I love to see his growth and Im happy for him. One thing I try to do is keep his confidence high." "DeMar [has been] going hard at me ever since I got here so I dont even notice it anymore," said the student of his mentor. "But it helps because hes one of the top wings in the league now." Whether he remains a starter or ends up returning to the bench, Ross has been set free. Regardless of which path the bewildered Raptors take and how they choose to get there, their former eighth overall pick figures to be a vital part of the ride. This opportunity and what he is able to do with it will be his most telling challenge to date. "You just have to be more focused, you just have to be dialled in," said the Raptors newest starter. "Its tough but its fun at the same time and as long as youre having fun with it, it comes easier." Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys
' ' '