Portland Timbers Advance to USOC Semi-Finals with 3-2 Win Over FC Dallas

USA TODAY Sports

Despite exhaustion after a tough month of June, and withstanding 100-degree heat, the Portland Timbers continued their dream season and advanced to the US Open Cup semi-final with a 3-2 win over FC Dallas.

This was one for the ages.

In one of the most nail-biting matches of the season, the Portland Timbers climbed out of an early hole with three second half goals, and held on to the victory in spite of a late-match surge from FC Dallas.

The Boys in Green looked sluggish in the early going, giving the ball away easily and giving FC Dallas ample space and time in the attacking half. FC Dallas capitalized with a goal in the 17th minute on a shot from just outside the penalty area that barely beat Donovan Ricketts diving to his left.

Portland still didn't put much together on the offensive side until the very end of the half, and continued to build their attack in the second. Darlington Nagbe finally leveled the score in the 61st minute with a bit of individual flair, then followed it up with an impressive assist of Diego Valeri just two minutes later. Frederic Piquionne scored a gimme a few minutes later, taking advantage of a rookie mistake by Walker Zimmerman.

Blas Perez pulled Dallas back into the game with a gift from Ricketts, a rare miscue on an otherwise typical solid night for the Portland keeper.

In the final second of the four minutes allotted for stoppage time, David Ferreira found a loose ball at the edge of the area and put a shot to the far post that beat Ricketts ... but bounced out against the woodwork.

The Timbers will get a much deserved break now after an incredible month of June. They will take on Real Salt Lake on August 7 in the Open Cup Semi-Finals.

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