Indy Eleven concluded its Arizona preseason trip with a 1-0 loss to the Portland Timbers of MLS in a scrimmage at Kino Sports Complex in Tucson on Wednesday evening.
The expansion North American Soccer League team, which was playing only its third ever match, held the Timbers to a scoreless draw until the 75th minute when midfielder Ben Zemanski scored off a 30-yard free kick for the only goal of the game.
“We stayed competitive for most of the 90 minutes out there. There were some slumps from time to time, but we were really pleased with what we saw tonight,” said Indy Eleven Head Coach Juergen Sommer. “We set up the group to get a look at a certain amount of guys that we really wanted to give some extra time to and get a good last impression in our mind before we have some final conversations. Tonight’s game really served its purpose, and for most of the game we were there on Portland’s level or pretty close to it.”
Indy Eleven kicked off its preseason trip in Grande, Ariz. last week, with 3-2 loss to the Canadian side Vancouver Whitecaps FC on February 5, and then two days later in Tucson dropped a 3-1 decision to the defending MLS Cup winners, Sporting Kansas City. In both scrimmages, the Indiana squad scored first and had the lead.
The squad returns to Indianapolis Thursday and settle down in the Hoosier State for nearly two weeks before beginning its next spring training camp in the Orlando area on Feb. 25. The club will release full details on its trip to the Sunshine State in the coming days once the scrimmage portion of the training camp has been finalized.
“I think we’re going to come away with at least five signings out of this trip, which will give our squad a real firm foundation to build on as we go down to Florida,” explained Sommer. “We hope to do more of the same down there, and if we can find some new talent to fold into the group in Orlando we should be in pretty good shape as we head deep into March and prepare for April 12th.”
Indy Eleven’s inaugural match of the 2014 NASL Spring Season is set for April 12 at home against the Carolina RailHawks.
02.14.2014: Tucson, Arizona; Kino Sports Complex
PORTLAND TIMBERS - INDY ELEVEN 1-0 (0-0)
Ben ZEMANSKI 75’
Portland Timbers: Jake Gleeson - Jorge Villafana, Taylor Peay, Rauwshan McKenzie, Alvas Powell, Aaron Long, Michael Nanchoff, George Fochive, Nikita Koltov, Victor Chavez, Dadzie. Booked: none
TD: Caleb PORTER
Indy Eleven: Kristian Nicht - *E. Cass, *S. Allen, *F. Jefferson, Kyle Hyland, *M. Crawford, *M. Morgan, Don Smart, Mike Ambersley, *B. Elkhart , Walter Ramirez.
Subs Used: *D. Jasper - Chris Wey, Baba Omosegbon, *P. DuBois, *R. Gibson, *B. Jennings, A. Whitley, *S. Monroe, *S. Jay , Pedro Mendes, *M. Shelby. Booked: none
TD: Juergen SOMMER
Photo - @reidjsphoto