PORTLAND, Ore. – T2 held two separate first-half leads but could not overcome three goals in the second half from OKC Energy FC in a 4-2 loss at Providence Park on Friday night. Ryan Sierakowski scored in his second straight match, while Portland Timbers Academy forward Gio Calixtro tallied his third goal of the season for T2.
Timbers Academy defender Caleb Kiner made his third appearance and second start of 2019, logging 90 minutes. Calixtro made his 17th appearance of the USL Championship campaign. Carlos Anguiano and Foster Langsdorf, both Timbers Academy products, logged their 14th and 20th appearance of the season, respectively.
T2 jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the fourth minute after Cristian Ojeda delivered a cross into the penalty area. Langsdorf calmly headed the ball down to Calixtro, who fired his shot off an OKC defender into the top left corner of the net. Calixtro came close to adding a second goal after his heel-flicked shot off Ojeda’s corner kick delivery was saved by OKC goalkeeper Cody Laurendi in the 14th minute.
OKC Energy leveled the match in the 20th minute after Christian Eissele was released in behind the Portland defense before placing his shot from inside the penalty area past T2 goalkeeper Aljaz Ivacic.
Portland took a 2-1 lead in the 28th minute when Kiner’s cross from the right flank found Ojeda near the edge of the box. Ojeda then headed the ball to Sierakowski, whose left-footed, volleyed shot was fired into the lower left corner of the net.
T2 nearly scored just before halftime after Calixtro slid the ball back to Langsdorf in the center of the penalty area, but his shot missed inches past the far post in the 45th minute.
Energy FC tied the match in the 53rd minute after Mekeil Williams headed a corner-kick delivery into the bottom right corner of the net. OKC took a 3-2 lead three minutes later when Eissele finished into the far corner of the net from the right edge of the six-yard box.
Portland threatened when Todd Wharton carried the ball to Ojeda, whose shot from the top of the box was parried away by Laurendi in the 69th minute. Two minutes later, Calixtro slid the ball to Sierakowski down the right side of the penalty area, but his low shot hit the side netting. In the 79th minute, Wharton’s shot from outside the box forced Laurendi into a diving save to his left.
OKC added a fourth goal when Christian Ibeagha finished from close range in the 86th minute.
Next up, T2 will travel to face Las Vegas Lights FC at Cashman Field on Saturday, Aug. 24. Beginning at 7:30 p.m. (Pacific), the match against Las Vegas will be streamed live on ESPN+.
Postgame quote sheet
T2 Head Coach Cameron Knowles
General thoughts on the match...
"It was a good start; overall a good first half and I think we're unfortunate not to come into halftime up 3-1. But then obviously a disappointing second half. I thought we were too easy to break down in certain moments and, plays that we expected from the opposition, we just weren't able to deal with it."
On the team's first-half effort in the attack...
"I think that the front group in the first half was excellent, playing simple, finding guys in the right moments and the right spaces and recognizing when it was a good opportunity to cross, when it was a good opportunity to shoot from distance. Through the first 45 minutes that entire group were very good."
On any takeaways heading into the upcoming road matches...
"Well I mean anytime you drop points at home you need to go and find them on the road, and we've shown that we're a very good team on the road. We can go anywhere and beat anyone, so you know that gives us a lot of confidence. But the two games that we've got coming up are going to be very difficult. We're getting to the business end of the season and the table is very congested, so results are going to be really important."
T2 (8-8-8, 32pts) vs. OKC Energy FC (8-8-9, 33pts)
Aug. 16, 2019 – Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
T2 2 0 2
OKC Energy FC 1 3 4
POR: Calixtro (Langsdorf), 4
OKC: Eissele (Ross), 20
POR: Sierakowski (Ojeda), 28
OKC: Williams (García), 53
OKC: Eissele (Gordon), 56
OKC: Ibeagha (Brown), 86
POR: Ojeda (caution), 90+1
POR: GK Ivacic, D Kiner, D Ornstil (Kobayashi, 82), D Diz Pe, D Smith, M Sierakowski, M Wharton ©, M Anguiano, M Ojeda, F Calixtro, F Langsdorf
Substitutes Not Used: GK Leeker, D Elliott, M Akale, M Clapier
TOTAL SHOTS: 16 (Ojeda, 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Calixtro, 2); FOULS: 11 (Langsdorf, 4); OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 7; SAVES: 4
OKC: GK Laurendi, D Jones, D Harris ©, D Ibeagha, D Williams, M Cato, M García, M Watson (Brown, 78), M Ross, M Hyland (Gordon, 45), F Eissele (Brown, 45)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Byars, M Gebhard, M Okot, M Sasivarevic
TOTAL SHOTS: 16 (Eissele, 7); SHOTS ON GOAL: 8 (Eissele, 3); FOULS: 16 (Watson, 4); OFFSIDES: 9; CORNER KICKS: 6; SAVES: 3
Referee: Elijio Arreguin
Assistant Referees: Baboucarr Jallow, Ryan Jung
4th Official: Pawel Sojka
Weather: Clear, 71 degrees
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial