Real Salt Lake drops nail-biter to Portland Timbers

SANDY, Utah (Saturday, August 15, 2015) – For the majority of the match at Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday, Real Salt Lake were the aggressors against the Portland Timbers.  Entering second-half stoppage time, RSL held statistical advantages across the board and narrowly missed grasping three points on several occasions.

However, a Nat Borchers header in the last moments of stoppage time gave Salt Lake a 1-0 defeat and ended a difficult stretch of five matches in 15 days that saw RSL go 1-4-0 across MLS play, the U.S. Open Cup and CONCACAF Champions League.

For the match, RSL outshot Portland 15-10, with both teams finishing the match with five shots on goal.  GK Nick Rimando finished the night with three saves and MF Kyle Beckerman had a goal-line clearance that seemed to save a point for RSL at home.  But in the fifth-minute of added time, Borchers broke free on a corner kick and nodded in the ball from Diego Valeri for the final 1-0 result.

In the first half, RSL had a flurry of shots from inside the box, putting the Timbers defense under duress early in the match.

Portland goalkeeper Adam Kwarasey made a stellar stop on a long shot from MF Luke Mulholland in the 31st minute.  On a bouncing ball from the right side, Mulholland launched a shot on the half-volley bound for the top left corner of the net, but Kwarasey swiped it away for a corner kick.

By halftime, RSL had outshot Portland 10-4, but didn’t have a goal to show for it.  FW Sebastian Jaime and FW Olmes Garcia had three shots each in the first 45 minutes.

Portland managed just one shot on goal through the first 70 minutes and that came directly off a free kick from Valeri.  In the 71st minute, though, Rimando made a tremendous stop on another ball from Valeri.  Maximiliano Urruti got out on a break and clipped it to the near post where Valeri flicked a shot on goal.  Rimando got a glove to it and parried it over the crossbar to keep the match knotted at 0-0.

Portland had two more late chances, but the Timbers were denied in the 85th minute when Rimando sprung to his left to punch a ball clear for a corner kick, then on MF Kyle Beckerman headed a ball off the line to preserve the shutout.

Then in stoppage time, Borchers – who played for Real Salt Lake from 2008-2014 – netted his third goal of the season to give the match to the Timbers.

Salt Lake remains just three points out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference at 7-10-8.  RSL will host the No. 6 team in the West, Seattle Sounders FC, for the first time this season on Saturday, July 22, at Rio Tinto Stadium.

Real Salt Lake Match Notes – RSLvPOR
-       RSL Head Coach Jeff Cassar served a one-match suspension Saturday for his dismissal from RSL’s previous match against Vancouver Whitecaps FC.  Assistant Coach Daryl Shore served as the lead bench coach in his place along with Ted Eck and Tyrone Marshall.
-       RSL DF Jamison Olave made his first start since playing just six minutes on June 7 against the Colorado Rapids.  He missed nine straight league matches in that span.
-       The goal by Nat Borchers ended a 372-minute shutout streak for RSL against the Timbers across all competitions.  The last goal prior to that came from another former RSL player, as Will Johnson scored on a penalty in June, 2014.


Goals by Period                    1          2          F
Real Salt Lake                        0         0           0
Portland Timbers                    0         1           1

Scoring Summary:

POR: Nat Borchers (Diego Valeri) 95+’

Misconduct Summary:

RSL: Demar Phillips (Yellow; Foul) 12’
POR: Liam Ridgewell (Yellow; Foul) 80’

Real Salt Lake (4-3-3): Nick Rimando; Tony Beltran, Aaron Maund, Jamison Olave (Elias Vasquez 86’), Demar Phillips; Kyle Beckerman (C), Luke Mulholland, Javier Morales (C); Luis Silva (Devon Sandoval 89’), Sebastian Jaime, Olmes Garcia (Sebastian Saucedo 76’).
Substitutes not used: Jeff Attinella, Justen Glad, John Stertzer, Luis Gil.

Portland Timbers (4-2-3-1): Adam Kwarasey; Alvas Powell, Nat Borchers, Liam Ridgewell, Jorge Villafana; Diego Chara, Will Johnson (Jack Jewsbury 87’); Darlington Nagbe (Dairon Asprilla 82’), Diego Valeri, Rodney Wallace; Lucas Melano (Maximiliano Urruti 65’).
Substitutes not used: Jake Gleeson, Dairon Asprilla, Norberto Paparatto, Taylor Peay.

Referee: Drew Fischer
Assistant Referees: Daniel Belleau, Marco Arruda
4th Official: Tyler Ploeger
Attendance: 20,338
Weather: Cloudy and 91 degrees