SEATTLE — The shot by Clint Dempsey didn't need any help going into the net. Chad Barrett wasn't taking any chances.
Barrett scored 30 seconds into second-half stoppage time to give the Seattle Sounders a 2-1 comeback victory over the New York Red Bulls on Sunday.
Marco Pappa tied it for the Sounders (8-3-2) in the 69th minute
Seattle defender Tyrone Mears helped set up the winning goal. Playing near the goal line on the right side, he floated a ball across the penalty area. Dempsey got a left foot to it and sent it toward the far post, where Barrett was waiting unmarked to tip it in off his right toe.
"The whole reason I wanted to get my toe on it and didn't head is that I wasn't sure," said Barrett, who had just come on for Pappa at the start of the 89th minute. "At the last second, as the ball was coming across, I could kind of see that it's going in. As a forward, I can tell when it's going in and when it's not.
"But there's always that chance the ball might hit the post or someone might be on the other side of me that I'm not too sure of. I just did it to make sure we got the three points. I knew I was onside, but it was going in anyway."
Barrett has three goals this season.
The goal originally was credited to Dempsey, who still picked up an assist and got back onto the scoresheet after two straight games without a point.
Lloyd Sam scored in the 36th minute for New York (4-3-5). He has four goals this season. But it wasn't enough for the Red Bulls.
"It's gut-wrenching right now because we put a lot of good things together on the day," coach Jesse Marsch said. "It's another game where we feel like there's a lot of good moments, but we don't make them add enough to good chances and then to goals."
The Sounders, who regained the overall league lead with 26 points (D.C. United has 25), lost two games this year when conceding the first goal.
"For our team to show their resiliency and battle back and win in injury time show our team's character," Schmid said. "I didn't think our game was 100 percent sharp today. A little bit of that was fatigue in the third game, playing against a good team and a team that pressed us."
Late in the 36th minute, New York ended Seattle's league-leading 338-minute stretch of not allowing a goal. With a free kick just to the left of the penalty area arc. Bradley Wright-Phillips lofted the ball over a four-man Sounders wall. It deflected off one of the defenders and floated toward the 6-yard box
Sam, while falling forward, knocked the ball off his head toward the turf. It bounced and flew into the right side of the net, despite goalkeeper Stefan Frei getting his outstretched fingers on it.
Pappa notched the equalizer for the Sounders. Obafemi Martins sent a long through ball toward the left side. Pappa took it into the penalty area, deked around defender Chris Duvall and sent a 12-yard shot across the goalmouth into the right side.
"You knew when it was 1-1 that the game was still up for grabs a little bit," said Marsch, whose team has just one win in its last seven games (1-3-3). "We're going to continue to push and we're going to get there. But now, we're struggling to put full performances together."