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Portland Timbers Go Down a Man, Up a Goal to Beat San Jose Earthquakes 1-0

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Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The Portland Timbers played half of tonight's match down a man, but still came out on top in this 1-0 win over the San Jose Earthquakes.

Once again the Timbers grabbed the first goal, going ahead in the 11th minute off a Diego Valeri free kick. With the ball at his feet wide on the Timbers' right, Valeri drove at the San Jose box only to be taken down by San Jose fullback Jordan Stewart. Off the ensuing free kick, Valeri hit a out-swinging ball into the San Jose box, dropping at the back post where Timbers captain Liam Ridgewell rose above the back and hit a powerful header past keeper David Bingham to open the scoring.

From there things got decidedly chippy as referee Chris Penso called a decidedly inconsistent game for both sides. Things came to a head in first half stoppage time as Stewart went down while pressing Dairon Asprilla from behind. After a long discussion with his linesman and fourth official, Penso pulled out a red card and ejected Asprilla for what replays would show was an elbow to the head of Stewart.

Now down a man, the Timbers found themselves under bombardment from San Jose, scrambling to contain a disjointed Earthquakes attack. Pressing forward, the Quakes forced a number of blocks and saves from the Timbers, including a point blank header off the top of Taylor Peay's head, but rarely troubled Jake Gleeson in goal.

The Timbers have a week off before facing the Earthquakes again in the U.S. Open Cup on June 14th at Providence Park.