MILWAUKIE, Ore. - The Portland Timbers U-23s extended their unbeaten streak to three games as forward Kharlton Belmar scored twice in a 3-1 victory over Victoria Highlanders FC on Saturday night at Alder Creek Middle School in Milwaukie, Ore.
Belmar opened the scoring for Portland (3-4-3, 12pts), collecting the rebound off forward Miguel Aguilar’s shot from the left wing and converting in the 14th minute. Victoria tallied the equalizer five minutes later as midfielder Riley O’Neill registered the goal.
The Timbers U-23s regained the lead in the 80th minute, capitalizing on a corner kick. Defender Hugo Rhoads sent in a cross to the near post and Aguilar headed the ball into the top corner for his first goal of the season.
Belmar put Portland in front 3-1, scoring his second goal of the match in the 90th minute, and his second consecutive brace. The goal was his team-leading seventh goal of the season.
Portland controlled possession and created multiple scoring opportunities, hitting the crossbar twice in the first half. Belmar’s header hit the crossbar in the 38th minute, while midfielder Reed McKenna shot from distance bounced off the woodwork in the 45th minute.
Portland outshot Victoria 19-13 and had a 10-2 advantage in corner kicks. Timbers U-23s goalkeeper Justin Luthy made four saves in the match, while Highlanders FC goalkeeper Elliott Mitrou stopped seven shots.
The Timbers U-23s play host to Kitsap Pumas on Saturday, June 28, at Doc Harris High School in Camas, Wash. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. (Pacific).
Notes: Belmar has scored five goals in the last three matches … Belmar tallied a brace in a second consecutive match … Aguilar registered his first goal of the season in the match … Rhoads, a second-half substitute, made his Timbers U-23s debut … Rhoads became the first Timbers U-23s player this season to tally two assists on his debut … All but two Portland starters registered a shot in the match … The Timbers U-23s improved to 7-3-3 all-time against Victoria.