Timbers net preseason win
A dynamic performance from Victor Arboleda and the return of Diego Chara highlighted the Portland Timbers fourth official preseason match.
And the Timbers on Wednesday won for the first time under head coach Giovanni Savarese.
Arboleda used his speed to score one goal and to set up two others as the Timbers beat a group of second-team New York Red Bulls players 4-1 in a preseason contest at Tucson, Arizona.
The Timbers have one win, two losses and one draw in four preseason matches. They play their final preseason match on Saturday against an opponent to be determined at Tucson.
Most of the Timbers projected starters did not play in the match. Chara, who suffered a broken foot in the first leg of Portland's playoff loss to Houston at the end of last season, came on in the 74th minute for his first action since the injury. He showed no hesitation and was called for a couple of fouls during his 15 minutes on the field.
Andy Polo, who started on the left side of midfield, opened the scoring in the 10th minute after Arboleda got behind the defense and dribbled into the right side of the penalty area. He passed to Samuel Armenteros who touched a sideways pass to the open Polo.
Two minutes later Arboleda again sprinted forward from the right wing. His cross found Armenteros in front of goal. Armenteros mis-hit his first touch but was able to tap home the rebound for his second goal in two preseason appearances.
Arboleda scored on a dash off the left wing in the 60th minute for a 3-0 lead, dribbling past two defenders and scoring from a tight angle.
New York — which fielded a squad of primarily of rookies and members of its United Soccer League team — got a goal in the 69th minute when Timbers left back Vytas mis-hit a Red Bulls' cross into his own goal.
The final goal came in the closing seconds of the match. Portland center back Julio Cascante got a tap-in goal after a Jeremy Ebobisse volley forced a save and Andres Flores sent the rebound to the wide-open Cascante.
Jake Gleeson started in goal and made one strong reaction save on a header off a Red Bulls corner kick late in the first half. Kendall McIntosh played the final 30 minutes and made a tip save on a close-range header in the 85th minute.
Jack Barmby started in the attacking central midfield position. Arboleda played the entire match, with Dairon Asprilla coming on for Polo and playing the right side in the second half. Flores and Cristhian Paredes started in holding midfield in front of a back four of Marco Farfan, Bill Tuiloma, Cascante and Zarek Valentin.
Farfan made several dangerous runs forward during his 45 minutes of action at left back. Modou Jadama replaced Tuiloma in the 51st minute. Tuiloma was down for a spell in the first half with what appeared to be a left ankle injury. He looked fine in finishing the first half, but was replaced after the first few minutes of the second half.
The Red Bulls first team opens play in the CONCACAF Champions League on Thursday, so the squad that took on the Timbers featured mostly members of the Red Bulls II USL team, along with rookies and players on trial.
Niko De Vera, a Camas, Washington, native who played for the Timbers youth academy prior to spending four seasons at Akron, started at left back for New York. He was drafted by the Red Bulls in the January MLS SuperDraft.
Former Oregon State forward Jordan Jones started up front for New York. Both De Vera and Jones are unsigned players trying to earn a roster spot with New York.
After Saturday's final preseason match, the Timbers will return next week at their training center in Beaverton to prepare for the March 4 season opener at the LA Galaxy.