SEATTLE (AP) _ Through the first eight games of the season, neither Clint Dempsey nor Jordan Morris had a goal in the same game for the Seattle Sounders.
On Saturday night, the World Cup veteran and the star rookie both found the back of the net.
Dempsey rocketed in a shot from straight in front of the goal in the 26th minute, and Morris scored for the fourth straight contest, and the Sounders beat the San Jose Earthquakes 2-0.
Dempsey’s goal, from just beyond the top of the penalty spot, was his second of the season.
Morris scored from the top of the penalty area restraining arc in the 89th minute. That tied the MLS record for consecutive games with a goal for a rookie. Damani Ralph did it for the Chicago Fire in 2003, and Patrick Mullins matched it for the New England Revolution in 2014.
“It’s always nice to get a goal, but all that matters is the three points,” said Morris, who picked up an assist on Dempsey’s goal. “Clint had a great game and a really good finish. We’re on a good streak, and we just have to keep it going.”
Added coach Sigi Schmid, Jordan did a good job with Clint in terms of dropping and going, so they were hard to pick up.’’
The Sounders (4-4-1) have points in five of their last six games (4-1-1).
“We created some more chances in the attacking third and still kept it tight in the back,” Dempsey said. “Tonight, we probably could have scored more than what we did. But we’re moving in the right direction, and hopefully, we can keep building.”
Goalkeeper Stefan Frei earned his second straight shutout. He got some help from the left goal post in the 84th minute when San Jose’s Chris Wondolowski banged a penalty kick off of it.
The penalty kick was awarded when Victor Bernardez was taken down in the box by Sounders defender Tyrone Mears.
Earthquakes coach Dominic Kinnear said it was just one of those breaks that didn’t go his team’s way.
“He’s got a lot of goals and a lot of penalties,” he said. “If we get a penalty in the first minute (of the next game), I’d like for him to take it — and the next one, and the next one.’’
Saturday was the first time in 23 games that the Earthquakes (4-3-3) were kept scoreless.
Dempsey was the last of four Sounders to touch the ball leading up to his goal. Aaron Kovar initially kept it in play deep in the right corner, passing it back out to Morris. He tapped it on to Erik Friberg, who took it into the right side of the penalty area.
Friberg crossed the ball toward the top of the penalty spot, and Dempsey ran onto it for a 14-yard blast into the back left corner.
Besides the penalty kick, the Earthquakes missed two other opportunities to tie.
In the 36th minute, Frei slid out to the top of his 6-yard box and took the ball off Wondolowski’s right foot. Then in the 56th, Simon Dawkins launched a 22-yard free kick over a seven-man Seattle wall. It bounced off the underside of the crossbar and down onto the goal line, where Frei was able to grab it.
“You’ve always got to have a little bit of fortune,” Schmid said. “I thought at times, our soccer was as good tonight as it has been this season. We were very dangerous when we were effective. Clint put in a really good effort tonight and deservedly got a goal. It was good to see Jordan get a goal, as well.”