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Player Ratings: Colorado Rapids vs Seattle Sounders, November. 22, 2016

A solid effort from the burgundy boys as they get the critical away goal in leg one. This is how the players rated.

MLS: Western Conference Championship-Colorado Rapids at Seattle Sounders
Marc Burch clears the ball away from Souders Brad Evans and Nelson Valdez.
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Colorado Rapids headed to the Pacific Northwest and took on the Seattle Sounders in leg one of the Western Conference Finals. The Sounders won the first leg over the Rapids 2-1, but the Rapids got the critical road goal, the first tie-breaker in the two leg series.

The Rapids started the scoring early in the match, getting a deflected goal from Kevin Doyle. Doyle took the pass from Jermaine Jones as Shkelzen Gashi made the perfect dummy to let the ball go through to Doyle. This was a good start from the Rapids.

The Sounders did not stay off the board for long. Jordan Morris gathered a rebound off the post from Cristian Roldan's shot. There were shouts for offsides but Morris looks to have timed his run perfectly. The rest of the first half provided each team opportunities, but no scoring.

The second half started with more of the same, but a soft foul by Marc Burch in the box on Nicolas Lodeiro gave the Sounders a penalty kick. Lodeiro then moved the spot and buried the shot passed Zac MacMath.

The Rapids had their opportunities in the second half. None more greater than when Sebastien Le Toux got through the backline. He took the shot and it was saved by Stefan Frei. However, if Le Toux would have touched the ball to his right, Marlon Hairston would have tapped in the ball to equalize the match.

Here is how I saw the match.

Zac MacMath - 7 (7.68): MacMath started a little rusty but grew into the match as it went along. He made some good saves to keep the Rapids into this and will be just fine on Sunday.

Marc Burch - 5 (5.14): Burch was good and did well both offensively and defensively in this match. But got baited into a yellow in the first half and then needlessly stepped in on Lodeiro to give up the penalty.

Axel Sjoberg - 6 (6.41): A good performance on a wet, turf field. He did make some mistakes, one that led to a dangerous opportunity for the Sounders. But in the end, nothing came of it.

Jared Watts - 7 (6.59): Another good performance by Watts who was solid at center back again for the Rapids. Watts was able to make some attacking runs from the backline that caused Seattle some issues.

Eric Miller - 5 (6.05): Not bad, but not great from Miller. For a right back that gets up in the play, he did not have that many touches.

Sam Cronin - 6 (6.14): Sam had a great match, but made a stupid play to earn a yellow that will take him out of leg two on Sunday.

Jermaine Jones - 7 (6.64): Jones gave it his all on Tuesday. He did well on offense and breaking up play on defense. He was fouled more than what was called.

Shkelzen Gashi - 6 (5.95): His dummy on Doyle's goal was great plus his effort after being injured against the LA Galaxy was one for playoff history. He was dropping back and playing defense too.

Kevin Doyle - 8 (6.59): It was a nice goal from Doyle. Though it was deflected, I think his original shot would have been tough for Frei to handle. He worked hard in the number 10 and 9 position once Badji came off.

Sebastien Le Toux - 7 (4.95): Le Toux's work rate was incredible. He was getting into the attack and defending quite well. He just needed to get his head up and find Hairston to his right.

Dominique Badji - 5 (4.77): Badji struggled on the wet turf. He had many turnovers and bad first touches. He was never able to get his speed or turn on the defense. He will need to be better on Sunday.

Substitutes

Marlon Hairston - 7 (6.23): Hairston came on and made an immediate impact on the wing, just like he has done all season.

Micheal Azira - 6 (6.27): Azira came on and helped stabilize the defense, allowing Jones to go up to midfield. He may see more action on Sunday with Cronin out.

That is how I saw the match. What do you think?