I’ve been downstate all week so I missed both posting about the Thorns’ hapless 1-nil road loss to Sky Blue last weekend and the hardly-unexpected eviction from the 2015 playoffs the followed yesterday through what sounds like a listless scoreless draw between playoff contenders Washington and Kansas City. In their third year of existence Thorns FC will end their season with the regular season with a match here Sunday and a final road match against the also-on-the-outside-looking-in Western New York Flash.
Last week, I said we could take our pick: ugly wins or pretty draws. So what do we call Friday’s 2-2 result? It wasn’t exactly pretty or ugly. What was it? Exciting? Dramatic? Disappointing? Thrilling? Exhausting? I think we’ll call it a “Pick Your Favorite Adjective” Draw. How’s that?
On May 30th, the Timbers played at 5,280 feet and beat Colorado on a goal at the death. Two and half months later, we returned to elevation – this time 4,327 feet – and beat RSL with a goal at the death. As a result, I’m starting a grass-roots movement demanding that Merritt Paulson raise Providence Park a few thousand feet.
I’m terribly late in posting about Thorns FC’s 2-1 win over the visiting Red Stars last Sunday night. Long with the brace, Betos with a couple of good saves (and a bizarre concession on a Mautz shoss…) and a solid half hour from our newest Thorn, Lianne Sanderson…and if you’re a fan you know what the high points were. Third win in a row pushing PTFC up into a virtual tie with FCKC for the final playoff spot.
And speaking of KC, the Thorns play at Swope tomorrow, so there’s no more time for me to review the match in detail. Instead, let me breeze through a positively Six-degree-esque rundown of some of my observations before we settle in to watch the away match…
After four weeks of losses and draws, it was nice to get back to our winning ways Friday. Sadly, the 1-0 win over Chicago won’t win any beauty contests. At home, versus a last-place team, we still had to claw and fight and scrap until the very end. We’re definitely not a 1st-place juggernaut. But a 5th-place scrapper? Yeah, that’s pretty much who we are.
I don’t want to refine too much on Wednesday’s 5-2 beatdown of the Boston Breakers. Boston is…well, let’s just say that Portland needed to play them some Boston right now. Last night’s match was the soccer equivalent of those tomato can bouts that Mike Tyson used to fill in his idle time while he was the heavyweight champ back in the late Eighties.
But that sort of thing has its risks – you never know when a Buster Douglas will show up. Between Portland’s competence and Boston’s ineptitude, however, last night looked a lot more like the Marvis Frazier fight. Jodie Taylor threw a sweet twisting uppercut and McCall Zerboni dropped the hammer and that was that.
If Valeri’s PK is a couple inches lower, if Adi’s 47th minute strike is a couple inches to the right, if Borchers’s header in the 39th minute is a couple inches left or right, we walk out of San Jose with a win. Truly, it’s a game of inches.