Portland Timbers forward Brian Fernandez (front) celebrates with Jeremy Ebobisse after Fernandez scored a goal against the Seattle Sounders in the first half of their MLS soccer match Sunday in Seattle. Fernandez scored twice in the Timbers’ 2-1 win. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Portland Timbers forward Brian Fernandez (front) celebrates with Jeremy Ebobisse after Fernandez scored a goal against the Seattle Sounders in the first half of their MLS soccer match Sunday in Seattle. Fernandez scored twice in the Timbers’ 2-1 win. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Big crowd watches the Sounders fall to the Timbers, 2-1

Brian Ferndandez scores both goals for Portland before more than 50,000 fans

Associated Press

SEATTLE — Brian Fernandez only arrived in Portland a couple of months ago. He’s quickly become a despised figure in Seattle.

Fernandez scored his second goal of the match in the 51st minute, moments after Seattle had pulled even, and the Portland Timbers beat the Sounders 2-1 Sunday night in the first Major League Soccer clash of the season between the Cascadia rivals.

For Fernandez, it was his third and fourth goals against Seattle this season. He scored twice against the Sounders when the sides met in a U.S. Open Cup match last month.

But what he did on Sunday — before a crowd of more than 50,000 — had a bigger impact.

“To come to a stadium, especially in a big rivalry derby like this, and be able to score and be able to quiet people and not have people talk to you during the match it’s beautiful,” Fernandez said through an interpreter. “It’s part of the game. I don’t mean to be condescending. I don’t mean to be arrogant about it. It’s just one of those beautiful things about football.”

It was the first league matchup between the rivals since last year’s Western Conference semifinals, when Portland advanced from the two-leg series after an exhausting, exhilarating second-leg that eventually went to penalties before the Timbers moved on. Portland reached the MLS Cup final before losing to Atlanta.

While the stakes weren’t the same, the intensity between the two long rivals was evident and erupted after the final whistle with several scrums, plenty of pushing and shoving and players needing to be separated. Seattle’s Roman Torres and Portland goalkeeper Steve Clark were at the center of the activity, but plenty of others were involved.

“When you get taunted by some of their players toward the end of the game, that’s a rivalry,” said Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei, who was trying to separate others after the game. “Maybe getting feisty after the referee blows the whistle and people go after each other, we just need to remember those moments when we play them next time.”

Fernandez scored his seventh and eighth goals of the season in just his second full month with the Timbers after being signed as a designated player form Necaxa in Mexico.

Fernandez gave Portland the early lead when he collected the ricochet from Jorge Moreira’s shot off the crossbar and scored in the 20th minute, finishing into an open net. After Seattle’s Raul Ruidiaz scored in the 50th minute to pull the Sounders even, Fernandez answered seconds later when his one-time shot deflected off Frei and trickled into the goal.

The victory kept alive Portland’s chances of winning the Cascadia Cup competition between the Timbers, Sounders and Vancouver Whitecaps. It was also a crucial three road points for the Timbers, who have just two MLS matches away from Providence Park the rest of the regular season.

It’s also the second straight year Portland won the only regular-season matchup in Seattle.

“There is a belief we can do it together as a group and there is that trust in each other to go out there and play with our hearts and stick to what we ask them to do,” Portland coach Giovanni Savarese said.

While Ruidiaz did collect Seattle’s only goal and his eighth of the season, he’ll also lament a pair of missed chances in the first 45 minutes and another opportunity in the 79th minute.

Seattle will have its chance to get even on Aug. 23 when the teams meet in Portland.

“Still some fire in this rivalry, and that got stoked to a higher level tonight,” Seattle coach Brian Schmetzer said. “We’ll remember some of the things that happened tonight, and hopefully we can use that in the next game.”

Talk to us

More in Sports

Silvertips’ Niko Huuhtanen and Giants’ Jaden Lipinski fight for the puck during the playoff match up against the Vancouver Giants on Saturday, April 23, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Silvertips will look to replace Huuhtanen in CHL import draft

The standout forward who scored 37 goals this past season recently signed a professional contract to play in Finland.

FILE - UCLA guard Jaime Jaquez Jr., right, tries to get by Southern California forward Isaiah Mobley during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game on March 5, 2022, in Los Angeles. UCLA and Southern California are planning to leave the Pac-12 for the Big Ten Conference in a seismic change that could lead to another major realignment of college sports. A person who spoke to The Associated Press on Thursday, June 30, 2022, on condition of anonymity because the schools' talks with the Big Ten have not been made public said the schools have taken steps to request an invitation to join the conference. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)
UCLA, USC leaving Pac-12 for Big Ten

The two schools announce they will be exiting the Pac-12 in 2024 in a major blow to the viability of the conference.

Seattle Mariners' Carlos Santana helps Cal Raleigh at home after they scored against the Oakland Athletics during the fifth inning of a baseball game, Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Seattle. Raleigh hit a two-run triple and scored on a throwing error. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)
Rodriguez, Raleigh lead Mariners over Athletics

The young standouts each come up with big hits in Seattle’s 8-6 victory over Oakland.

AquaSox's manager, Louis Boyd, Funko Field at Everett Memorial Stadium in Everett on July 28, 2019. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
AquaSox pitchers fan 19 in win over Emeralds

Alberto Rodriguez adds a two-run blast in Everett’s 4-3 victory.

The roof-top sign for Climate Pledge Arena is shown next to the Space Needle, Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021, ahead of the NHL hockey Seattle Kraken's home opener Saturday against the Vancouver Canucks in Seattle. The historic angled roof of the former KeyArena was preserved, but everything else inside the venue, which will also host concerts and be the home of the WNBA Seattle Storm basketball team, is brand new. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Seattle to host NBA preseason game between Blazers, Clippers

Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell declined to comment on any recent conversations with NBA officials about expansion to the city.

Evergreen Speedway remains closed due the stay-at-home order while NASCAR will run it's first race since the pandemic began on Sunday. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Community roundup: Evans tops podium at Mark Galloway Shootout

Also, EvCC athletes named All-American, Tulalip native signs with MLB organization and more.

Seattle Seahawks running back DeeJay Dallas (31), wide receiver Cade Johnson (88), and wide receiver Aaron Fuller (13) walk off the field after NFL football practice Wednesday, June 8, 2022, in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Seahawks announce training camp registration date for fans

Fans must register through the team’s website starting Wednesday at 10 a.m.

Seattle Mariners' Julio Rodriguez rounds the bases after hitting a two-run home run against the Baltimore Orioles during the fourth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 29, 2022, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Caean Couto)
Rodriguez hits 12th home run, Mariners topple Orioles

Seattle tops Baltimore 9-3 for its seventh win in the past nine games.

Dallas Wings' Kayla Thornton, front left, and Marina Mabrey, right, defend as Phoenix Mercury center Tina Charles (31) shoots in the second half of a WNBA basketball game, Friday, June 17, 2022, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
Storm sign former MVP Tina Charles

The 33-year-old center joins a roster that now has 4 former No. 1 overall picks.

Most Read