Pore leads Timbers to 2-0 win over Carolina at PGE Park

PORTLAND, Ore. – Midfielder Ryan Pore recorded a goal and an assist to lead the Portland Timbers to a 2-0 victory over the Carolina RailHawks in front of 6,742 Saturday at PGE Park. The Timbers handed the first-place RailHawks their first loss of the season.

Midfielder Brian Farber scored his first goal of the season in the first half and goalkeeper Chris Seitz logged nine saves to lead the Timbers (1-1-1, 4pts) to their first victory of the season. In his second game on loan to Portland, Seitz picked up his second consecutive shutout.

Pore’s three-point performance guided Portland to its first win over the RailHawks since the 2007 season. The Timbers dealt the RailHawks their second shutout of the season and have now held Carolina scoreless in four games at PGE Park since 2007.

Midfielder John Cunliffe and forward Andiry Budnyy each recorded three shots for the RailHawks (3-1-1, 10pts), who had a four-game unbeaten streak come to an end Saturday. Carolina out-shot the Timbers 14-8 on the night.

The Timbers jumped out to an early lead on Farber’s goal in the fifth minute. A Carolina foul set up a free kick for defender David Hayes 15 yards outside the box. With a quick re-start, Hayes slipped a pass down the left side of the box for Pore, who then sent a cross at the back post. Farber was there on the back side and headed a shot into the back of the net for the Timbers’ first goal against the RailHawks since Sept. 1, 2007.

Led by Seitz’s six saves in the first half, Portland kept the RailHawks’ offense at bay through the first 45 minutes of the match. Carolina had its best chance of the opening period in the 35th minute on a shot by Cunliffe. From the top right corner of the box, Cunliffe curled a shot around a Timbers defender at the left post forcing Seitz into action, but his shot missed wide.

The RailHawks had one last chance before the break. During first-half stoppage time, Carolina midfielder Kupono Low got on the end of a corner kick, but sent his header off the crossbar and out of play.

Early in the second half, the Timbers had a chance to add to their lead as forward George Josten, making his first start of the season, found forward Mandjou Keita on the doorstep just three yards out from goal. With a defender on his back, Keita got the ball to his feet and forced RailHawks goalkeeper Eric Reed to make a reaction save to keep Keita’s shot from finding the back of the net.

In the 55th minute, the RailHawks nearly took advantage of a couple Portland miscues to level the score. Defender Jeremy Tolleson brought the ball down into the box and tried to thread a pass to a teammate in the middle of the area. The ball was deflected and Seitz made a great initial stop but the ball trickled back into play, creating a scramble in the box. The RailHawks had two chances get deflected before the Timbers were able to clear the ball past the endline.

But the Timbers steadily gained momentum late in the second half starting with chances by Pore and second-half sub Keith Savage. Pore unleashed a 25-yard shot from the top of the box that looked destined for the back of the net, but hit the top right corner of the frame in the 69th minute.

Moments later, Savage helped win the ball in the offensive third and worked it across the top of the box to the left side in the 75th minute. He then unloaded a shot at the right post that rolled just wide.

The late build up late by the Timbers paid off in the 83rd minute as Pore delivered his first strike of the season. Josten started the play when he drew three Carolina defenders as he attacked the box and then found Pore open on the wing. Pore dialed up a low 20-yard shot from the top right corner of the box that snuck past the out-stretched arms of Reed and into the back of the net.  

Portland hits the road for their next match on May 9 against the expansion Cleveland City Stars at 4 p.m. (Pacific). A live broadcast will be available on 95.5 The Game and online at www.portlandtimbers.com. A live video webcast of the match will be available through USL Live – now a free service at www.usllive.com.

Notes: The Timbers picked up their first win over Carolina at PGE Park since 2007 (4 matches) … Seitz made his second start for the Timbers Saturday while on loan from Major League Soccer’s Real Salt Lake. He is to return to Salt Lake Sunday … Injured goalkeeper Steve Cronin is listed as day-to-day and could return as soon as the Timbers next match in Cleveland … Forward Antou Jallow made his Timbers debut Saturday against the RailHawks coming on as a sub late in the second half.

Lineups:
POR: GK Seitz, D Thompson, D Knowles, D Danso, D Hayes, M Farber (Jallow, 89), M Claesson (Savage, 58), M McManus, M Pore, F Josten (Nimo, 88), F Keita (McLaughlin, 68)

CAR: GK Reed, D McKenney, D Schulte, D Rusin, D Tolleson (Gilkerson , 88), M Lowery, M Low, M Watson (Glinton, 67), M Cunliff, F Budnyy (Gardner, 77), F Bundu (Diallo, 58)