Timbers U-23s Top Rival Kitsap 1-0
MILWAUKIE, Ore. - Midfielder Zach Barnes converted a first-half penalty kick and goalkeeper David Meves recorded five saves to earn the shutout as the Portland Timbers U-23s defeated the Kitsap Pumas 1-0 in a hard-fought match at Alder Creek Middle School on Friday night.
Playing in their first home match in three weeks, the Timbers U-23s improved to 6-1-2 (20 pts) and maintained their lead in the Premier Development League's Northwest Division. The Timbers U-23s lead Victoria Highlanders FC by one point in the division standings, after Highlanders FC (6-1-1, 19pts) beat North Sound Seawolves FC 2-0 earlier Friday.
The shut-out victory also extended the Timbers U-23s home winning streak to four games and the team's home shutout streak to 360 minutes, as the team has now shut out each of its first four league opponents at home in 2013. Portland goalkeeper David Meves earned his PDL-leading sixth clean sheet of the season.
Kitsap (1-3-5, 8pts) had a six-match unbeaten run come to an end in the loss.
The Timbers U-23s scored the lone goal of the match in the first half. Midfielder Zach Barnes converted a penalty kick in the 27th minute, shortly after the game had paused more than 10 minutes early in the match following an injury to Timbers U-23s forward Mark Sherrod.
The Timbers U-23s earned the penalty kick in the 26th minute, after Pumas goalkeeper Aaron Fenalson took down Timbers U-23s midfielder Reinaldo Brenes in the box. Played into the box by midfielder John McFarlin, Brenes had sidestepped Fenlason on his way to the goal when Fenalson took him down.
The Timbers U-23s had a good chance to go up 2-0 in the 55th minute, when a solid cross from midfielder Jose Ribas along the left side set up two chances from point-blank range. Forward Clark Phillips and Midfielder Nick Palodichuk each had solid chances within seconds of each other, but Pumas defender Cody Shelton saved both shots off the goal line to keep the Pumas within one at 1-0.
The Pumas forced Meves into four saves in the second half. Second-half sub Shane Malcome had two shot attempts early in the second half stopped by Meves, including one on a firmly hit ball in the 58th minute. Kitsap midfielder Kasra Kiarash drove a header on frame from 10 yards out off a cross from the right side in the 67th minute, but Meves was in position to catch the ball.
The physical nature of the match took hold in the second half, leading to ejections for both teams late. Timbers U-23s midfielder Victor Souto and Pumas defender Josh Kelly each received red cards in the 78th and 81st minutes, respectively, leaving each team with 10 players the rest of the way. The two rivals combined for 37 fouls and eight cautions.
The Pumas had two scoring chances waived off in the second half due to an offside call on Sebastiaan Jansen in the 48th minute and an offensive foul on second-half sub Alex Chavez in the 87th minute.
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