VANCOUVER, BC – Make it two wins in a week over Portland Timbers for Vancouver Whitecaps FC as the clubs’ U-23 sides battled in United Soccer Leagues (USL) Premier Development League (PDL) action at UBC’s Thunderbird Stadium on Friday. Two goals from Marco Bustos and one each from Kianz Froese and Marlon Ramirez led the way for the Blue and White.
After a scrappy first 20 minutes, the match finally came to life when great build-up play by the ‘Caps saw Froese cross in to Ramirez, who laid it off to Bustos, who subsequently fired a great strike on goal that was well saved. That was a mere warning to the Timbers though, as a minute later the home side opened the scoring. Ramirez took a corner kick and Bustos got his head on it, directing it into the far corner for a 1-0 lead.
The first half ended with the young ‘Caps on top 1-0.
Portland came out strong after the break and pressed for an equalizer. However it was Froese who would find the net first in minute 59, making a great individual effort up field, charging past his defender and slotting it into the net for a 2-0 advantage.
The Timbers would not give up easily. On 68 minutes, midfielder Jacori Hayes found Ben Strong streaking in front of goal, with Strong then poking it past Carducci and tapping it into goal to make it 2-1.
Whitecaps FC were not deterred and rode a fine performance to the final whistle. Ramirez finished off a great game in style come stoppage time. First, the little Honduran was taken down in the box, with Bustos stepping up to finish it and make it 3-1. Finally in the last minute, Christian Dean burst down the left flank and struck a pass across the mouth of goal where Ramirez was waiting for an easy tap-in and a 4-1 final score.
“Everyone on our squad had their moments tonight,” commented Whitecaps FC U-23 head coach Niall Thompson after the match. “Bustos attacked fiercely, as did Kianz. Carducci shined as usual and Chris Serban defended our goal valiantly. Everyone played well tonight.”
Whitecaps FC U-23 continue a busy week on Sunday when they travel to Alberta for a friendly match with Calgary Foothills FC U-23 this coming Sunday, June 6. Kickoff will be at 4 p.m. local time (3 p.m. PT) at Shouldice Athletic Park, Encana Field. Tickets can be purchased at the Foothills box office or at the gate.
22' – VAN – Marco Bustos (Marlon Ramirez)
59’ – VAN – Kianz Froese
68’ – POR – Ben Strong (Jacori Hayes)
90’ – VAN – Marco Bustos
90 +3’ – VAN – Marlon Ramirez
Shots: Vancouver 7 – Portland 8
Saves: Vancouver 2 – Portland 2
Fouls: Vancouver 23 – Portland 17
Offsides: Vancouver 5 – Portland 8
Corners: Vancouver 3 – Portland 8
39’ - VAN – Christian Dean
57’ – VAN – Marlon Ramirez
71’ – POR – Jacori Hayes
76’ – VAN – Harry Lakhan
79’ – POR – Fatai Alashe
Vancouver FC U-23
22. Marco Carducci; 27.Chris Serban, 6. Jordian Farahani, 16.Christian Dean, 2.Colton O’Neill; 25. Bryce Alderson, 7.Harry Lakhan, 10.Marco Bustos; 19.Kianz Froese (18. Sean Einarsson 82’), 24.Cody Cook (14. Brett Lewis 67’), 25.Marlon Ramirez
Substitutes Not Used:
13.William Diaz, 4.Mark Baldisimo, 5.Nicholas Prasad, 17.Mitch Piraux, 30.Adam Jones
Portland Timbers U-23
0. Brendan Moore; 2. Kyle Fisher, 13. David Rose, 15. Evyn Hewett, 18.Devon Fisher; 6. Jacori Hayes, 27. Fatai Alashe; 5.Ben Strong, 8.Jose Ribas (10. Zachary Hamer 64’); 12. Kharlton Belmar, 21.Sam Gainford (20. Nolan Moore 43’) (9. Foster Longsdorf 90’+1’)
Substitutes Not Used:
1.Justin Luthy, 4.Louis Cross, 22.Bobby Conner, 28.Anthony Machionne