COLUMBUS, Ohio - Forward Fanendo Adi scored two goals - one in each half - to help the Portland Timbers to a 2-1 victory on the road against Columbus Crew SC at MAPFRE Stadium.
With two goals on the night, Adi now has 12 on the season, which set a new Timbers MLS club record for goals in a single season.
A match that promised to be entertaining delivered in the first half with a back-and-forth affair. Playmakers from both squads had chances early on, as the likes of Kei Kamara, Ethan Finlay, Diego Valeri and Darlington Nagbe all created danger in the opening minutes.
Crew SC escaped a very early deficit when a sliding Wil Trapp tackle brought Nagbe down in the Columbus box. Nagbe looked stunned to not hear a whistle, but referee Silviu Petrescu waved play on.
In the 27th minute, Waylon Francis lofted a perfect cross for Kamara, who put an open header over the bar. Just a minute later, Portland capitalized.
With a piece of magic, Nagbe scooped a pass between Crew SC defenders, finding a streaking Adi, who powered a shot past a helpless Steve Clark for the match opener.
The league’s leading scorer had a bit of brilliance of his own, as Kamara pulled Columbus level just before the half with a perfectly placed header into the bottom corner from a corner kick.
The strike gave Kamara 22 goals in 2014, just five away from the league’s all-time mark and four away from the most in Crew SC history. It also raised the amount of MLS clubs he has scored against to 21, as he now has goals against each of the current active teams and the now-defunct Chivas USA.
Portland wasted little time regaining the lead in the second half.
As fullback Harrison Afful streaked down, a Portland break isolated Michael Parkhurst on Rodney Wallace. The center back couldn’t keep up, and the winger slid a cross to Adi, who calmly placed the point-blank shot in the opposite corner in the 50th minute for the winner.
The three points for the Timbers (12-10-8) brings them to 44 points on the season, tied with Sporting KC for the fifth seed in the Western Conference and four points ahead of seventh-placed San Jose. Portland next host Sporting KC on Oct. 3, at Providence Park.
Crew SC (13-10-8), however, missed a chance to take command of the Eastern Conference and guarantee a playoff berth. Columbus visit the New York Red Bulls next Saturday.
Portland Timbers (12-10-8, 43pts) at Columbus Crew SC (13-10-8, 47pts)
Sept. 26, 2015 – MAPFRE Stadium (Columbus, Ohio)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Timbers 1 1 2
Columbus Crew SC 1 0 1
POR: Adi (Nagbe), 28
CLB: Kamara (Higuaín), 43
POR: Adi (Wallace, Valeri), 50
POR: Chara (Caution), 45+1
CLB: Higuaín (Caution), 88
POR: Fochive (Caution), 90+1
POR: Kwarasey (Caution), 90+4
Lineups & Stats
POR: GK Kwarasey, D Powell, D Borchers, D Ridgewell ©, D Villafaña, M Chara, M Jewsbury, M Nagbe, M Valeri (Fochive, 87), M Wallace (Asprilla, 81), F Adi (Melano, 75)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Gleeson, D Paparatto, D Peay, F Urruti
TOTAL SHOTS: 13 (Adi, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 7 (Adi, 3); FOULS: 19 (Valeri, 4); OFFSIDES: 2; CORNER KICKS: 11; SAVES: 2
CLB: GK Clark, D Afful, D Parkhurst ©, D Wahl, D Francis, M Finlay (Cedrick, 65), M Trapp, M Tchani (Saeid, 65), M Meram (Jimenez, 81), M Higuaín, F Kamara
Substitutes Not Used: GK Stuver, D Klute, D Pogatetz, F Schoenfeld
TOTAL SHOTS: 11 (Higuaín, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 3 (Three players tied, 1); FOULS: 9 (Francis, Wahl, 2); OFFSIDES: 4; CORNER KICKS: 7; SAVES: 5
Referee: Silvui Petrescu
Assistant Referees: Craig Lowry, Kathryn Nesbitt
4th Official: Nima Saghafi
Time of Game: n/a
Weather: 70 degrees, Cloudy
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial