SAN FRANCISCO – MLS rookie Cordell Cato scored in the first half as the Seattle Sounders, three-time defending tournament champions, beat the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 Tuesday night in a U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal.
Cato, 19, scooped up a long pass that skipped through San Jose’s defense and launched an 8-yard shot from a sharp angle to the right of the Earthquakes’ goal. The ball slid through the legs of keeper David Bingham in the 19th minute.
It was the first goal as a member of the Sounders for Cato, a Trinidadian youth international.
The Sounders made the early goal stand despite second-half pressure from San Jose, which owns the MLS’ best record. Seattle extended its Open Cup unbeaten streak to 17 and will host Chivas USA in a tournament semifinal July 10.
San Jose poured players forward after inserting Chris Wondolowski, the MLS’ leading scorer, in the 53rd minute, but never could find an equalizer.
Earthquakes defender Victor Bernardez unleashed a drive from the top of the penalty area in the 94th minute that deflected out of bounds, but San Jose’s calls for a hand ball went unheeded.
Andrew Weber, whose contract option was dropped by San Jose this winter, got the shutout in his first Open Cup action this year.
In a game that grew more testy in the second half, Quakes forward Alan Gordon received a red card in the final minutes.