Pumas Vs Portland Timbers U-23’s

Pumas Home Opener at Gordon Field

Warning: a lots of photos

The Kitsap Pumas launched a new era as they opened up their new home, on bright sunny Pacific Northwest evening, against the Portland Timbers U-23 squad. The Pumas said goodbye to their old home and said hello to Gordon Field as nearly 700 supporters were there to participate in the pomp and circumstance. The once open field, which was used by the fair grounds for concerts and carnival games, has been transformed into a classy soccer venue with an intimate feel as players run by only a few yards away from the stands.

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Gordon Field on a beautiful afternoon

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Nearly 700 fans fill Gordon Field

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The Blue Guard standing watch

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Neil Shaffer leads the Pumas onto the field with kids from the Kitsap Pumas Youth

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Full of supporters

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Onto the Pitch!

Facing an undefeated Portland Timbers U-23 squad did not faze the Pumas, who are in a league with three teams affiliated with Major League Soccer clubs. Having already faced the Vancouver Whitecaps U-23’s and playing the Seattle Sounders U-23’s to an epic draw, the Pumas already knew they could face another giant. The Pumas would be the toughest opponent for this Timbers squad, pushing them to a 0-0 draw.

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Announcing the lineups

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Starting 11
Back row: Alex Rodriguez, Alex Chavez, Aaron Fenlason, Nuno Gourgel, Josh Kelly, Cody Shelton
Front row: Hellah Sidibe, Sebastiaan Jensen, Neil Shaffer, Andrew Sterling, Brandon Scott

While no goals were scored in this matchup, there wasn’t a lack of action and drama. The game was a back and forth match with no team truly winning the possession battle. One team would make a push then the other would counter and vice versa. It was yet another physical game with Pumas showing they won’t be pushed around.

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Alex Rodriguez battles for the ball

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Nuno Gourgel heads a ball away

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Josh Kelly puts a stop the a Timbers advance

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Brandon Scott pushes the ball up field

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Neil Shaffer takes one away from a Timbers player

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Nuno Gourgel wins another 50-50 ball

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Cody Shelton puts another stop on the Timbers

While the Pumas were out shot almost 3-1, keeper Aaron Fenlanson did a wonderful job filling in for the injured Dustyn Brim. The Pumas had several chances at putting a goal on the board, with Hella Sidibe pushing a ball wide of the goal on a wonderful break away, and Will Daniels had a chance at an open net as he beat the Timbers keeper and another defender in the box but just couldn’t get a shot off.

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Aaron Fenlason, filling in for the injured Dustyn Brim does a great job stonewalling the Timbers

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Neil Shaffer is everywhere on the pitch

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Brandon Scott pushes the attack with overlapping runs from his defensive position

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Nuno Gourgel slows the Timbers at midfield

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Substitute Kennedy Chongo wins a ball

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Substitute Will Daniels makes the keeper look silly but can’t find the handle to put the ball in the net.

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Hella Sidibe makes another blistering run down the sideline

After the full 90 minutes were up, the Pumas had pushed another corporate soccer giant to a draw. At the end of the match, the community feeling and intimacy of the venue showed as kids and fans walked onto the pitch as the players signed shirts, programs, and even arms!

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Neil Shaffer poses for a photo

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Will Daniels signs a souvenir program

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Coach and Goalie Dustyn Brim gives his autograph

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Shane Malcolm signs his John Hancock

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Josh Kelly signs away

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This girl will never wash her arm again. (Cody Shelton)

If you enjoyed these photos, the rest of the gallery can be seen here:¬†Pumas vs Timbers U23’s

Also check out the Pumas homepage http://kitsapsoccerclub.com

2 Responses

  1. With permission from the club all Pumas photos are now for sale when you visit the full gallery!