Vancouver cuts down Timbers 2-0
PORTLAND, Ore. - The Vancouver Whitecaps overtook the Timbers for first place in the Western Conference, shutting out Portland 2-0 on goals by John Sulentic and Jason Jordon before 6,007 fans Friday night at PGE Park.
It was the third-consecutive home loss for the Timbers (8-5-0, 22pts), who had not dropped three-straight at PGE Park since joining the A-League in 2001.
Vancouver (8-4-1, 25pts) has won four of their last five games while shutting out the Timbers for the second time this season.
The Whitecaps jumped on the board in the 10th minute of play when Alfredo Valente dished inside the box to Sulentic, who snuck the ball past Portland goalkeeper Josh Saunders into the left side of the net for the early 1-0 advantage.
Vancouver’s Nico Craveiro let loose on a shot that rebounded off the outstretched hands of Saunders in the 68th, but Jordan’s follow-up found the back of the net and gave the Whitecaps a 2-0 lead, from which the Timbers would never recover.
The Timbers had a shot to equalize in the 64th, when Byron Alvarez took a cross from Hugo Alcaraz-Cuellar for the open look, but his attempt was misplayed and looped over the crossbar.
In the first half, Portland’s Alex Bengard took a ball from the top of the box and sailed it just high over the crossbar, narrowly missing a chance at a goal in the 10th minute.
Portland had another opportunity in first-half stoppage time, but Vancouver goalkeeper Alex Marques made a diving save on a 20-yard shot by Jake Sagare.
The Timbers host the Edmonton Aviators on Thursday, July 8 at 7 p.m. The match will be televised live on Comcast Cable Channel 14.
TIMBERS NOTES: Despite the loss, the Timbers still lead the Cascadia Cup tournament with nine points … Vancouver has seven points and Seattle has zero … Friday’s match was Oregon Youth Soccer Federation night at PGE Park … a proceed of ticket sales went to the non-profit organization … Vancouver has handed the Timbers their only two shutouts this season.
SCORING SUMMARY: Sulentic, 10’ (Valente); Jordan, 68’ (UA).
PENALTY SUMMARY: VAN Heald, YC (20’), Kindel, YC (58’); POR Alcaraz-Cuellar, YC (42’), Bengard, YC (87’).
LINEUPS: VANCOUVER (8-4-1) Marques GK, Craveiro D, Lyall D, Thompson D, Morris M, Heald M, Sulentic M (Nash 71’), Kindel M, Valente M, Jordan F, Xausa F (Griffiths 77’); PORTLAND (8-5-0) J. Saunders GK, Heinzen D, Benedetti D, Henning D, Winters M (S. Saunders 81’), Gregor M, Bengard M, Alcaraz-Cuellar M, Sagare M, Gordon F, Alvarez F.