Sounders U-23 opened U.S. Open Cup play Tuesday with a 5-1 mauling of Doxa Italia on Tuesday at Sunset Chev Stadium in Sumner.
All of the U-23 goals came in the first half, and four came from David Geno, a forward from Kingsport, Tenn., and East Tennessee State University.
“Soccer’s a player’s game,” U-23 coach Darren Sawatzky said. “A young guy from Tennessee came out and said, ‘This is why I want to be in Seattle.’ … If that’s any indication of where he’s headed, it’s a good pickup.”
Geno became the 10th player to score four goals in U.S. Open Cup competition since 1995 (when such record began being kept). The tournament record is six.
“Everybody played so well today,” Geno said. “I was just on the end of some perfect balls in. I had the easy part, really.”
Doxa Italia came in as a Southern California men’s league power. It has won the Coast Soccer League Premier Division title five times in nine years and was U.S. Adult Soccer Association’s National Amateur Cup runner-up in 2011. Its goal Tuesday came in the 68th minute.
Sounders U-23 jumped ahead in the 13th minute with a goal from Darwin Jones from the University of Washington. Geno’s four goals in a 19-minute span made it 5-0 by the 38th minute. Geno didn’t play in the second half as Sawatzky turned an eye to his club’s Premier Development League opener Thursday at Portland.
Sounders U-23’s next Open Cup match will be Tuesday at the Charlotte (N.C.) Eagles of USL Pro.
Don Ruiz: 253-597-8808 email@example.com/soccer