Sports

Nkufo, Sounders handle Toronto

SEATTLE – Blaise Nkufo and Steve Zakuani scored in the first half to lead the Seattle Sounders to a 3-2 win over Toronto FC on Saturday.

Seattle (12-9-6) earned its third consecutive win and improved to 4-1-1 in the past six games, bolstering its chances of making the playoffs for the second time in as many MLS seasons.

Nkufo scored his fifth goal in three games on a header off a free kick in the 26th minute, giving Seattle a 2-1 lead in front of a sellout crowd of 36,079.

“I’m really proud of the way we came back after they scored the first goal to go up 2-1 at halftime,” Seattle coach Sigi Schmid said. Zakuani scored in the 21st minute to tie it at 1. Zakuani took a pass inside the box, beat goalkeeper Stefan Frei and kicked the ball into an open net.

Dwayne De Rosario and Chad Barrett scored for Toronto (8-12-7), which dropped to 1-6-2 in the past nine games.

Sanna Nyassi scored his first MLS goal in the 59th minute to make it 3-1.

Barrett responded in the 88th minute but Toronto could not equalize before time expired.

The Sounders, with 42 points, can sense they are closing in on a playoff berth.

“I’ve always told you the magic number for me is 45 because that gets you there for sure,” Schmid said. “We are within striking distance of that and we’ve got three games to get there, so we need to win one out of our last three. But we want to do more than that.”



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