Pores Eighth Goal Of The Season Paces Portlands Offense
A second-half goal by midfielder Ryan Pore was countered with a last-minute strike by midfielder Daniel Paladini as the Portland Timbers and Carolina RailHawks battled to a 1-1 draw in front of 8,119 at PGE Park on Sunday.
The Timbers controlled the run of play for a majority of the match, and edged the visiting RailHawks 16-7 in shots. Pore scored his league-leading eighth goal of the season to lift the Timbers to a 1-0 lead in the 61st minute. On one of the final plays in second-half stoppage time, the RailHawks leveled the score on a bouncing shot from Paladini to earn a share of the points in another close contest between the two clubs.
Pore attempted a team-high six shots and scored in his third straight match, forward Bright Dike logged the assist and midfielder Alex Nimo attempted three shots of his own to lead the Timbers (3-3-3, 12pts). With the draw, the Timbers snapped a two-game losing streak in league play.
Paladini and forward Etienne Barbara provided a spark off the bench for the RailHawks (3-2-3, 12pts), who with the draw maintain an unbeaten record on the road this season. Barbara was credited with the assist on Paladini's equalizing goal.
The Timbers looked to put Carolina under pressure from the opening minutes of the match, out-shooting the RailHawks 8-2 in the first stanza. After nearly finding the back of the net early in the second half, Pore struck the go-ahead goal for Portland just passed the hour mark. Dike found Pore in stride down the left side. With space as he entered the box, Pore slid a low, rolling shot past RailHawks goalkeeper Eric Reed and inside the far post.
Even in the late going, the Timbers looked to push forward, but Carolina found the equalizer in extra time on a play started by Barbara down the right side. As he penetrated the area from deep in the corner, he sent a cross into a crowded box. Paladini was on a run at the near post and was able to get enough of the ball to send it over the goal line to tie the match at 1-1.
The Timbers frontline of Dike and forward Mandjou Keita caused problems for the RailHawks in the first half. The two strikers combined for five of Portland's eight shots in the opening period. Dike nearly caught up to a long pass played over the RailHawks back four in the 18th minute, but the threat ended in the hands of Reed.
Dike stripped Carolina defender Matt Bobo in the Timbers' offensive third in the 25th minute and forced a one-on-one with Reed. In effort to get by the goalkeeper, Dike pushed the ball to the far left side of the penalty area. He chased it down and attempted to put a shot into an open net with Reed off his line. As his shot drew close to the goal, RailHawks midfielder Cory Elenio tracked back in time to knock it wide of the near post.
Carolina's best chance of the first half came in stoppage time. Timbers goalkeeper Steve Cronin was able to punch out a long free kick into the box. The ball landed at the feet of forward Gregory Richardson, who then put a shot on frame with a bicycle kick attempt. Protecting an open net, Timbers defender Ross Smith was in position to head the ball over the end line.
Pore attempted five of his six shots on the night in the second half, as the Timbers continued to put the heat on the RailHawks. His first attempt came in the opening minutes of the second half, firing a blistering a shot from the top left corner just over the mark.
In the 88th minute, Nimo set up Pore for a chance to double the Timbers lead. Off a pass from across the box, Pore settled the ball and then unleashed a low shot from 14 yards out that hit off the near post.
Barbara was the difference for the RailHawks in the second half, and helped the team to five shots in the period. Aside from assisting the equalizer, Barbara had two quality chances of his own, including one in the 74th minute which was stopped on a key save by Cronin.
The Timbers embark on a two-game road trip to face the Austin Aztex on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. (Pacific) and the Miami FC Blues on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (Pacific). Both matches will air on 95.5 The Game and a live video webcast at www.portlandtimbers.com/live.
Notes: Carolina defender David Hayes made his first visit back to PGE Park since playing for the Timbers in 2009 ... The two goals on Sunday were just the sixth and seventh goals scored in the all-time series between Portland and Carolina ... Including Sunday's contest, five of the nine matches between the two clubs since 2007 have ended in a draw.
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U.S. Soccer Federation D-2 Stories from June 7, 2010
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- Pores Eighth Goal Of The Season Paces Portlands Offense - Portland Timbers
- Whitecaps Maintain Their Position At Top Of The NASL Conference - Vancouver Whitecaps
- RailHawks Tie Portland 1-1 - North Carolina FC
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