MIAMI – Midfielder Andrew Gregor recorded a goal and an assist to help the Portland Timbers defeat Miami FC 2-1 at Tropical Park in Miami on Saturday. Portland defender Scot Thompson scored the game-winning goal late in the match to help the Timbers pick up the team’s first win in Miami.
With the win, Portland (13-4-8, 47pts) has won two straight and moves into first place in the USL First Division by two points over the Seattle Sounders. Both Seattle and Portland play on Sunday. Portland visits the Puerto Rico Islanders while Seattle hosts the Charleston Battery.
Miami (8-15-4, 28pts) lost its fourth straight match, and finishes the month of August with a 0-4-1 record. The Timbers’ victory in Miami was the first in two attempts since 2006 and improves their road record to 5-4-2 this season. It was the Timbers’ first road victory since July 21.
In the 73rd minute, a corner kick by Gregor connected with Thompson a few yards off the goal line to give the Timbers a 2-1 lead. Miami goalkeeper Patrick Hannigan left his line to play Gregor’s kick which curled into the box. Thompson, left with space, headed in his second goal of the season.
The Timbers took a 1-0 lead in the 21st minute on a penalty kick goal by Gregor. Portland midfielder Shaun Higgins drove the ball 20 yards up field before he was knocked down in the box as he attempted to sneak a pass to Bryan Jordan. Gregor’s eighth goal of the season slipped under Hannigan and inside the left post.
Miami tied the match at 1-1 in the 67th minute on a header by midfielder Jamil Jean-Jacques. Midfielder Luis Gonzalez sailed his corner kick into the box where Jean-Jacques deflected the ball inside the far post from six yards out.
Portland goalkeeper Josh Wicks made several key saves throughout the match, including two point-blank stops in the first half on shots by Miami midfielder Sean Fraser. In the 35th minute, Wicks smothered a 12-yard shot by Fraser to help the Timbers maintain a one-goal lead. In the closing minutes of the match, Wicks denied a shot by Miami’s Zinho on a 20-yard free-kick attempt into the top right corner with a diving effort.
The Timbers finish their trip to the Southeast with a match against the Puerto Rico Islanders on Sunday at 3 p.m. (Pacific). A video webcast of the match is available through USL Live at www.usllive.com. An audio broadcast through www.portlandtimbers.com will not be available.
Notes: The Timbers swept the 2007 season series against Miami FC going 2-0-0 in two games … Portland’s last road win was on July 21 against the Atlanta Silverbacks … Four of Gregor’s eight goals on the season have come via penalty kick attempts.
POR: GK Wicks, D Griffin, D S. Thompson, D Knowles, D J. Thompson, M Lara, M Poltl, M Gregor, M Higgins, F Olum, F Jordan
MIA: GK Hannigan, D Dias, D Rodrigues, D Jean-Jacques, M Cameron, M Zinho, M Pulido, M Gonzalez, M Goncalves, F Calcagno, F Fraser
POR: Gregor (PK), 21
MIA: Jean-Jacques (Gonzales), 67
POR: S. Thompson (Gregor), 73