Timbers Fall 3-2 to New York on Late Winner by PearceAugust 19, 2012 - Major League Soccer (MLS) Portland Timbers
In an action-packed first half, the Timbers jumped out to a 2-0 lead by the 32nd minute, with Dike scoring eight minutes in and Nagbe finding the back of the net just past the half hour. The Red Bulls responded with a pair of goals inside the final five minutes of the half, with Kenny Cooper scoring in the 43rd minute and Tim Cahill tallying in the 45th minute, to knot the score at 2-2 at the break.
Key saves from both club's goalkeepers highlighted the second half until Pearce headed home a cross from Jan Gunnar Solli seven minutes from time to seal the 3-2 win, keeping New York unbeaten at home (9-0-3) in 2012.
Nagbe scored in his second consecutive match, midfielder Sal Zizzo logged two assists, Dike scored in his first MLS start, defender Kosuke Kimura matched a career high with his third assist and midfielder Franck Songo'o recorded his third assist for the Timbers (5-13-6, 21pts).
Pearce scored his second goal of the season, Cahill's first MLS goal was the equalizer, Cooper registered a goal and an assist and Solli recorded two assists to help the Red Bulls (13-7-5, 44pts) to victory and maintain their second-place position in the Eastern Conference.
Making his first MLS start, Dike lifted the Timbers to an early lead, scoring the club's quickest MLS road goal in the eight minute. Kimura sprung Zizzo on a break with a well-placed pass down the right touch line. Zizzo threaded a pass between Red Bulls defenders to Dike on the back past and Dike smashed a right-footed shot from inside the box past New York goalkeeper Bill Gaudette.
Portland staked a 2-0 lead in the 32nd minute, capitalizing on another fast-break play. In the attacking third, Songo'o worked the ball in to the center of the field from the left side. He passed the ball off to Zizzo, who one-timed a leading pass into the box for Nagbe. As Gaudette left his line, Nagbe tucked a rolling shot into the bottom left corner of the goal for his fifth goal of the season.
The Red Bulls evened the score at 2-2 before halftime, scoring two goals in quick succession. Solli picked out Cooper in the center of the box with a cross in from the right side, and Cooper headed home his 14th goal of the season in the 43rd minute. Two minutes later, Cahill struck for his first MLS goal when he put away a deflected Dax McCarty shot from the top of the box.
Pearce provided the late game heroics seven minutes from time. Off a corner kick, Cooper played the ball out wide on the right to Solli, who then sent a cross back into the box. Pearce, on the near post, was the first to the ball and snapped in the game-winning header.
Gaudette made three key saves in the second half, turning away one-on-one opportunities by Zizzo in the 63rd minute and midfielder Diego Chara in the 66th minute. Songo'o set up Nagbe for an open look at the top of the box in the 61st minute, but Gaudette was able to turn away Nagbe's low shot to the left post with a diving stop.
Portland goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts made two stops early in the second half to keep the score line even. In the 52nd minute, he turned away a glancing header by forward Thierry Henry at the near post and was then able to recover and deny the follow-up attempt by Sebastien Le Toux at the top of the goal box.
The Timbers return home to play host to Vancouver Whitecaps FC in a Cascadia Cup clash on Saturday, Aug. 25, at JELD-WEN Field; kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. (Pacific). The Portland-Vancouver matchup will be televised live on ROOT SPORTS, with radio broadcasts available on 750 AM The Game and in Spanish on La Pantera 940 AM.
* The Timbers and Red Bulls met for the only time during the 2012 regular season on Sunday. New York leads the all-time MLS series against Portland with a record of 2-0-1, winning both matches at Red Bull Arena. * The Red Bulls are one of just two clubs in MLS who remain unbeaten at home this season; New York is 9-0-3 through 14 matches at Red Bull Arena in 2012. * The Timbers are 3-3-3 against Eastern Conference clubs this season. * After scoring multiple goals on the road for the first time as and MLS club Wednesday, the Timbers on Sunday claimed their first multiple-goal lead on the road with Darlington Nagbe's goal in the 32nd minute. * With two goals and four credited assists, the Timbers finished with eight offensive points against New York, matching the club's second-highest points total this season. Portland recorded nine points (3 goals, 3 assists) in a 3-1 win over Philadelphia in its season opener March 12. * The four credited assists against New York is a season high for the Timbers in 2012. * On their two-game road trip, the Timbers scored multiple goals in back-to-back games for the first time this season. * The Timbers and Red Bulls finished even in shots (12), shots on goal (5) and corner kicks (6). * The match against Red Bulls was the Timbers' second road match played on a Sunday this season. The Timbers are 2-2-1 in Sunday fixtures in 2012. * Forward Bright Dike made his first MLS start Sunday against New York, and scored the quickest road goal in Timbers MLS history with his strike in the eighth minute. * Dike's first strike of the season comes exactly one year and two days after he scored his first MLS goal on Aug. 17, 2011, at Sporting Kansas City. * Additionally, Dike's goal was just the second scored by Portland this season inside the opening 15 minutes of a match. The other, was by Kris Boyd in the third minute against the LA Galaxy on July 14 at JELD-WEN Field. * Midfielder Sal Zizzo made a second consecutive start Sunday, starting both matches of the two-game road trip. Over the last two games, Zizzo has recorded a goal and two assists. * Zizzo's two assists against the Red Bulls was the third multiple-assist performance by a Timbers player this season, joining Jack Jewsbury (March 12) and Eric Alexander (March 31) to have accomplish the feat. * After scoring the equalizer against Toronto FC on Wednesday, midfielder/forward Darlington Nagbe scored in a second straight match, tallying in the 32nd minute against New York. He became the second Portland player to score in back-to-back matches this season. Boyd was the first, scoring against Chivas USA on April 7 and then again against the Galaxy on April 14. * Nagbe has five goals on the season, which ranks second on the club in goals scored. * With an assist on the opening goal by Dike, defender Kosuke Kimura earned his third assist of the season (second while with the Timbers), matching a career high he set in 2010 while with the Colorado Rapids. * Kimura was forced to leave the match due to injury in the 56th minute, taking a knock to the face by Red Bulls midfielder Tim Cahill; Kimura was replaced by Lovel Palmer, who just returned from international duty with Jamaica. Palmer featured in Jamaica's 2-0 win over El Salvador on Wednesday. * Making his 195th career MLS start Sunday, midfielder Jack Jewsbury surpassed 18,000 minutes played in his MLS career, joining a short list of only 20 other active MLS players to have played 18,000 or more minutes. * Designated Player Diego Chara made his 50th appearance for the Timbers on Sunday against New York. He's started in 49 of his 50 appearances since his club debut April 23, 2011. Chara becomes the fourth player in Timbers MLS history to reach the milestone. * Chara was issued his eighth caution of the season in second-half stoppage time against New York. As a result, he will miss the Timbers' upcoming match against Vancouver due to a league-imposed suspension for caution accumulation. * Midfielder/defender Rodney Wallace also reached a career milestone Sunday, appearing in his 75th career MLS match - 36 of those have come as a member of the Timbers. * Midfielder Franck Songo'o started Sunday against New York, returning to Starting XI after missing Wednesday's draw against Toronto FC due to a one-game, league-imposed suspension for caution accumulation.
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