Timbers U-23s earn comeback road win at Victoria
VICTORIA, B.C. — Back-to-back goals by forward Jaime Velasco and defender Mark Daus helped guide the Portland Timbers U-23s to a 2-1 victory against Victoria Highlanders FC in their final road match of the 2013 Premier Development League regular season on Saturday night before 2,347 fans at Royal Athletic Park.
The Timbers U-23s, who clinched a playoff berth Friday night with a draw at Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-23, sit in second place in the PDL’s Northwest Division, with a six-point lead over Vancouver. The top three teams in the division advance to the postseason.
The Timbers U-23s (7-3-3, 24pts) overcame a 1-0 halftime deficit with second-half goals from Velasco and Daus to help cap a two-game road trip to British Columbia with a victory. Velasco, a native of Beaverton, Ore., scored the equalizer in the 65th minute, and Daus, a recent roster addition, notched the game-winner just past the 70th-minute mark.
The Timbers U-23s were unbeaten over their final four road games of the regular season.
Highlanders FC (8-2-3, 28pts) was handed just its second loss of the 2013 campaign in its regular-season finale. The 2013 Northwest Division champions struck for the opening goal, as forward Sahil Sandhu tallied off a corner kick play in the 24th minute.
The Timbers U-23s return home for their regular-season finale Tuesday, July 16, against Sounders FC U-23 at Southridge High School in Beaverton, Ore., at 7 p.m. (Pacific).
Notes: The Timbers U-23s finished the 2013 regular season with a 3-1-3 record on the road, scoring eight goals … Portland goalkeepers Blake Hylen and Paul Blanchette each played a half against Victoria, seeing their first regular-season minutes of the 2013 campaign … The goals scored by Daus and Velasco were their first of the season … The Timbers U-23s and Highlanders FC split the 2013 season series 1-1-0, with each team winning on the road … The Timbers U-23s have scored at least two goals in seven of their 13 regular-season matches.