Just 364 days removed from the Portland Timbers' crushing extra time loss to Cal FC, the Timbers made no mistake about their win tonight, scoring five goals, four in the first half.
The Wilmington Hammerheads, who rode into town having already played three road games in nine days, were no doubt hoping to sit back and play defense and hope for a counter attack goal, much like their predecessors. Frederic Piquionne put an end to those plans just two minutes into the match.
An early corner kick taken by Will Johnson hit Piquionne, whose glancing header skipped past keeper Tony Hernandez and scooted into the back of the net.
From there on it was off to the races. Piquionne scored a first-half fourspot, and after Wilmington's Paul Nicholson pulled one back in the 61st minute, Futty Danso restored the four-goal advantage with another header off a Will Johnson corner. Three of the Timbers five goals came off set pieces delivered by Will Johnson.
For Wilmington's part, they did not give up, even four goals down, continuing to push for goals and putting a total of eight shots on Portland's frame, several of which required some acrobatics from Milos Kocic.
The Timbers will now host the Tampa Bay Rowdies, who defeated the Seattle Sounders this evening by a score of 1-0. Timbers-Rowdies will take place in two weeks, on Wednesday, June 12.