1 - 0 Portland Timbers
Preseason match, French Field, Kent, WA
87' SEA: Bettinger (Brown)
Seattle: Rich Cullen (Carlos Castellanos 45'); Scott Jenkins, Ryan Edwards, Todd Stauber; Chad Brown, Casey Barber, Leighton O'Brien (Jason Kuska 56'), Mark Hogenhout; Viet Nguyen, Kyle Smith (Kei Kinoshita 67'), Rees Bettinger.
Portland: Daniel Moss (David Alexander
45'); Roger Gantz (Paul Brooks 45'), Todd Simmons (Neil Ryan 45'), Scott
Benedetti (Adam Cooper 45'), Jamie Byers (Jesus Ochoa 45'); Brian Winters
(Andy Casey 45'), Sean Sylvis (Ranvir Singh 45'), Caleb Westbay (Vadim
Tolstolutsky 45'), Darren Sawatzky (John Terlecky 45'); Mark Baena (Luke
Rust 45'), Rob Baarts.
A lone goal from rookie candidate Rees Bettinger in the closing minutes sent a large preseason crowd home happy. Goalkeeper trialists Rich Cullen and Carlos Castellanos shared their second shutout in as many nights.
The new Portland Timbers replaced 10 of 11 at the half, and Seattle fans saw a number of familiar faces: 1999 Sounders MVP Mark Baena, 2000 Sounders MVP Darren Sawatzky, Tacoma native Brian Winters, Redmond native Sean Sylvis (Sounders Select last season), and Vadim Tolstolutsky (SPU last season). 2000 Sounders rookie Greg Howes is still with his indoor team.
Several signed Sounders were unable to play: Jason Farrell (indoor playoffs), Craig Tomlinson (arthroscopic knee surgery), Preston Burpo (appendicitis), Chris Farnsworth (appendix removal), Mike Casale (pulled muscle), and Christer Forsberg (waiting for visa).
Seattle rookie Mark Hogenhout opened the attack, firing unsuccessfully in the first minute. Jamie Byers took Portland's first shot in the 3rd minute, a header from a corner kick that was saved by Cullen at the far post.
Viet Nguyen, playing as a forward with a license to roam, was involved in most of Seattle's chances. In the 5th he was open for a pass in the penalty area and forced Daniel Moss to push the ball wide for a corner kick.
Ex-Sounder Sawatzky looked dangerous as he ran up the middle, working a wall pass with Baena, but Cullen played it nicely and slid out to snare the ball as Sawatzky was forced to hurdle the 'keeper. Rob Baarts caught Cullen off his line when he headed a cross from 18, but missed the mostly-open goal.
Nguyen juked a defender in the left side of the area and blasted a near-poster on target, but Moss did well to dive and slap the ball wide for a corner. Plenty of attacks in the first 16 minutes, but the rest of the half saw only one good chance in the 24th when Leighton O'Brien carried the ball square across the penalty area and rolled it backwards to Nguyen, whose low 18-yarder was right to Moss.
Halftime: Seattle 0 - 0 Portland
After 19 minutes that were uneventful other than a yellow card each way, Nguyen resparked Seattle's offense with a corner kick to the far post that was centered low by Jason Kuska and shot by Bettinger inside the goal area, but a defender had a leg stuck out to deflect the ball over the bar.
Baarts came right back for Portland, firing a cleared ball from 33 yards, but right into 2nd-half goalkeeper Castellanos' bread basket.
Bettinger beat the last defender for a chance, but 2nd-half goalkeeper David Alexander was out to the 18-yard line for the block save.
In the 75th Portland's Luke Rust beat a man to carry up the middle and shoot from 15, and Castellanos did well to push it wide of the near post. Ranvir Singh had an excellent chance when a long free kick went over everybody but his volley missed badly.
87' Bettinger (Brown). Kei Kinoshita got around the left side, carried to the bye line, and aimed his cross for the far-post runner, but a defender managed to head the ball over the bar for a corner. The resulting corner kick play was busted, but Nguyen found the loose ball and fed it to Chad Brown, who was open near the right post. Brown sent a low, crisp cross through the goal area past the far post, and Bettinger was there to slam the ball into the back of the net.
A big smile from Bettinger, a few minutes of defending, and the first preseason victory was in the book.
Final: Seattle 1 - 0 Portland
Shots: 12 9
Saves: 5 5
Corners: 5 6
Fouls: 27 12
Offsides: 5 0
38' SEA: O'Brien cautioned for a foul at the center circle.
55' POR: Tolstolutsky cautioned for tripping O'Brien.
61' SEA: Brown cautioned for knocking down an opponent.
Referee: Mac Pinski; Asst Refs: Calin Znamirovschi, David Simon;
4th: Mike Fox