Alvarez garners 'Team of the Week' honors

PORTLAND, Ore. - On the heels of Portland’s emphatic 3-0 win over the visiting Toronto Lynx on Saturday, the Timbers will play host to the Minnesota Thunder on Friday, April 29, at PGE Park before traveling to Seattle the next day to take on the Sounders on Saturday, April 30. Both matches kick off at 7 p.m. (Pacific).

ALVAREZ HONORED
Timbers forward Byron Alvarez, who led the club last season with 36 points (16g, 4a), was named to the USL First Division Team of the Week after his solid play against Toronto led to a second half goal. The strike tied Alvarez with McKinley Tennyson for first place on the club’s all-time USL goal-scoring ledger with 29, giving the Portland striker a chance to break that mark this weekend against Minnesota and Seattle.

TIMBERS VS. MINNESOTA - FRIDAY, APRIL 29, AT 7 P.M.
The Minnesota Thunder make their first of two appearances at PGE Park this season with a Friday night match-up with the Timbers at 7 p.m. Portland didn’t lose to the Thunder last season, posting a 2-0-2 record against the club through four matches. Perennial contenders in the USL, the Thunder feature Liberian forwards Melvin Tarley and Johnny Menyongar in their attack. Individual tickets can be purchased at area Ticketmaster outlets and at the PGE Park box office.

TIMBERS AT SEATTLE - SATURDAY, APRIL 30, AT 7 P.M.
The Timbers return to the site of their 2004 exit from the postseason with a Saturday match against archrival Seattle. The Sounders, who are without former Timber Andrew Gregor, captain Danny Jackson and forward Craig Tomlinson for Saturday’s contest, fell to the Timbers 2-1 in a preseason friendly at PGE Park on April 9. The Timbers are 3-5-1 all-time in Seattle, but have won their last three regular-season contests there.

PREMIERSHIP TO PORTLAND
Sunderland AFC earned promotion to the English Premier League after defeating Leicester last weekend, 2-1. The Black Cats, who travel to PGE Park on July 23 to take on the Timbers, will provide Portland sports fans a unique opportunity to watch the Timbers take on some of the top talent in the world. The English Premier League features famed clubs Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea, and its talent pool of players is arguably unparalleled in world soccer. A variety of group rates and plans are available for the Sunderland exhibition by calling (503) 553-5555.

TIMBERS FANS MIGRATE NORTH
Although Saturday’s match at Seattle is technically a road game, Portland will have plenty of friends in the stands at Qwest Field. Approximately 100-150 Timbers fans are expected to travel to Seattle and cheer on the Timbers in their first road match of the 2005 season. Tickets are available on game day at the Qwest Field box office.

AARAN LINES IN TOWN
Timbers midfielder Aaran Lines had his visa application accepted last week and has been training with the team in anticipation of this weekend’s contests. Lines, who spent last season with Arka Gdynia of the Polish First Division, arrived in Portland from Germany on Friday afternoon.

WINTERS GOAL WAIVED OFF
After further review by the league, it was determined that Brian Winters’ second-half goal against the Lynx was actually an “own goal” by a Toronto defender, denying the fifth-year Timber of his first goal with the team.