Preseason Notebook: Preparations continue for season opener

Today in Portland: The Portland Timbers continued their daily preparations for the 2006 season today with a two-hour training session held at PGE Park.

The session got underway around 10 a.m. with basic warm-ups, stretching and drills. Players then participated in a seven-on-seven drill, a device which was designed to emphasize supporting play and spacing. Points were scored when a team held possession of the ball in the opponent's end zone, similar to a touchdown.

Training concluded with a full 11-on-11 scrimmage, which lasted about 30 minutes. Timbers head coach and general manager Chris Agnello said that the scrimmage is a regular part of the team's practice schedule and they will be using it as the final exercise in their daily routine.

Treatment Table: Although it is still early, the treatment table has so far remained largely unoccupied. Defender Josh Brown picked up a small knock but he will be returning to the first team as early as tomorrow.

No other signed players are being treated for injuries at the moment and all others are participating in regular training.

Tuning Up: The Timbers will be participating in their final pre-season exhibition game this Saturday when they take on the University of Portland at Merlo Field. Game time is set for 2 p.m. on campus at U of P.

The team traveled south to Corvallis on Wednesday to face off against Oregon State, a game which they won 2-1, on goals from Hugo Alcaraz-Cuellar and Luke Kreamalmeyer.

In order to keep match fit, the Timbers will also be playing a second exhibition match against Oregon State a week after their season opener at Vancouver. The match, to be held at the Tualatin Hills Rec Club, will be kicking off at 3 p.m.

Ready to Begin: The Timbers open their home schedule on May 5 against the Vancouver Whitecaps at 7:00 p.m. A variety of season ticket options are available by calling the Timbers ticket office at (503) 553-5555. For ticket information, go to www.portlandtimbers.com.