- Ross Smith and Steve Cronin
Yes, I know this is the second soccer post in a row. But PEOPLE. Did I not just post that this weekend is crazy full of soccer? It is and I am watching it and you are watching it and others have missed it and will want to know what happened.
Well, among other things, this: In an incredibly entertaining World Cup battle for third place, Germany beat Uruguay 3-2. Uruguay almost sent it into extra time with a Dreamy Diego Forlán free kick that went just off the cross bar in the dying seconds of the game. By the way, did you know Dreamy Diego tweets? He does, and his barbecue parties are awesome. Blogtown Cat Fans will also love to know that Diego loves cats.
But I digress. The Timbers also took care of business tonight knocking off Miami FC Blues 2-0 in front of a rollicking 12,189. This was one of those games that Portland knew they wanted to put away as they don't have a home league match for, like, ever. A team-wide solid effort was put in by all with particular standout performances by the night's Crockett and Tubbs in Ross Smith and Steve Cronin. Smith, aka "They Often Call Me Speedo, But My Real Name is Mr. Earl," was all over the pitch saving Miami shots off the line, dealing with peskily annoying Miami forward Edward Santeliz, and best of all, firing in a Alex Nimo free kick rebound past Miami's keeper Caleb Patterson-Sewell in the 48th minute for his first league goal of the season.
The Blues picked up the pace and began rush after rush on the Portland net. You half expected them to unveil LeBron at some point. However, Cronin—making his 45th consecutive league start for Portland—was up to each challenge stopping many point blank shots and having excellent support from his stalwart defense. Seriously, he was always in position all game long.
The contest was finally put away in the 90th minute by league leading scorer Ryan Pore who split the two Miami defenders with an insanely awesome feint and then flashed on through with a shot that Patterson-Sewell had no chance on. Pore, whose touch had failed him somewhat in recent matches, was a threatening all evening with great ball distribution and runs throughout.
Finally after all that, rumor has it that there was Timbers Army Tetris dancing in the PGE Park concourse. Dance, I say, DANCE!
Tomorrow, the soccer festivalé continues with the Holland v. Spain World Cup Final at 11:30 in the a.m. and then the Timbers friendly against Club Atlas at 6 p.m.
POR: GK Cronin, D Joy, D Smith, D Danso, D Purdy, M Pore, M McManus, M Gaudet (Marcelin, 67), M Nimo (Suzuki, 60), F Dike (Keita, 81), F DeMartin (Josten, 53)
MIA: GK Patterson-Sewell, D Neto, D Kirby, D Dias (Cameron, 62), D Veris, M Rodrigues (Dominguez, 79), M Gomez, M Cabas (Randolph, 81), F Thompson (Shriver, 45), F Santeliz (Jerome, 84), F Araujo, Jr.
POR: Smith (Nimo), 48
POR: Pore, 90
Lineup and scoring summary courtesy of Portland Timbers