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Timbers Tie 3-3 in Last Second Let Down Against RSL

The highs were high and the lows were low as the Timbers tied Salt Lake today.

Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

The Portland Timbers gave up the tying goal in the 93' of their heartbreaking match against Real Salt Lake, coming away with only a point from what was a winnable game against the league leaders.

The scoring started off with a 24' goal from Rodney Wallace. The ball ended up at Wallace's feet as the Timbers broke down the pitch before he was taken down for a free kick 25 yards from goal. Diego Valeri curled in a beautiful delivery from the set piece that Rodney Wallace claimed and was able to get a glancing header to, sending the ball past Jeff Attinella and into the back of the net to put the Timbers up 1-0.

The Timbers' lead lasted longer than it did against FC Dallas, but not by much.

In the 38' Javier Morales got around his friend and countryman Diego Valeri on the endline before sending the ball into the box for Nat Borchers. Borchers got a head on the cross only to have it swatted away by Donovan Ricketts. Unfortunately for the Timbers, the save put the ball right at Borchers' feet and he only had to tap it in to equalize 1-1.

Five minutes later in the 43' Morales again was causing the Timbers trouble. Contesting a ball with Andrew Jean-Baptiste in the Timbers' box, Morales went down under light contact and Ricardo Salazar whistled for a penalty. A view of the replay revealed a questionable call, but one made possible by AJB's arm present across the chest of Morales. Having earned the penalty, Morales converted it as well, sending Ricketts the wrong way with a chipped penalty to his left and giving RSL the 2-1 lead.

The first half ended with the Timbers looking scattered and RSL controlling play. However, as the second half kicked off the Timbers looked much more like a team that could compete with the best in the league.

It took twelve minutes of hard pressure before the Timbers were able to erase the RSL lead. In the 57', Rodney Wallace got on the end of a long ball out of the back and went straight at the RSL defense. With Wallace bulling his way between two defenders, the ball bounced up and hit the arm of a defender on the edge of the box. Perhaps to make up for the previous penalty call, Salazar pointed to the spot. Again it was an Argentine stepping up to the spot and, just like Morales, Valeri sent the keeper the wrong way and placed the ball in the back of the net to even the game up at 2-2.

The Timbers began to lose some of their edge as the half wore on until they received a boost in the 79' when Yordany Alvarez went in late on Diego Chara, taking down the Colombian and earning a straight red card for his efforts.

With RSL down a man, the Timbers seemed to get a second wind, pushing forward and getting what seemed like it would be the winning goal in the 86'. With the Timbers throwing men forward and keeping the pressure on RSL, the ball fell to Kalif Alhassan in the RSL box. With nobody on him but a sharp angle to the net, Kalif went for power over finesse, crushing the ball past Attinella and into the side netting to put the Timbers up once again.

That should have been it, but there was still ten minutes to play thanks to the numerous injuries in the half. As the Timbers tried to manage out the game, something they did with aplomb over the weekend, it all went wrong. An AJB back pass to Ricketts was mishit and landed at the feet of Ned Grabavoy. He sent a quick cross into the box only to have AJB stick a foot out and block the ball away. The ball landed at the top of the box and bounced to the final RSL substitute of the day, Cole Grossman, who, unmarked in the scramble, calmly slotted the ball home past Ricketts. Pa Modou Kah was unable to clear a long pass into the box with his head and the ball fell to Luis Gil. Gill put a shot on frame that AJB got a foot on and blocked away, only to have the ball fall to Cole Grossman who calmly slipped the ball past Ricketts at the near post.