Austin dominates Portland in rematch that follows familiar script

Austin FC

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin FC exploded for three goals in the first half against Portland to cruise to a 3-1 win and snap a three-game losing streak.

Saturday night’s performance seemed like déjà vu for the Live Oaks. They scored their first four goals at home and earned their first win at Q2 Stadium against the Timbers on July 1.

Cecilio Dominguez got the scoring started in the 11th minute on a penalty kick. After a few seconds of theatrics from Portland goalie Steve Clark, Dominguez froze Clark with a kick in the lower righthand corner.

It was Austin’s first penalty kick all season, but it almost didn’t happen. In the seventh minute, Jose Van Rankin took out Dominguez inside the box. Originally, no foul was called, but after a VAR review, it was determined to be penalty.

It was redemption for Dominguez, who got the start after getting benched in the first half in Austin’s loss to Vancouver on Wednesday.

Three minute’s after his goal, the Oaks struck again on a snap header by Diego Fagundez off a cross into the box from Nick Lima.

Dominguez has a team-high five goals, with Fagundez right behind him with four.

Austin’s first-half flurry continued in the 29th minute on an aggressive sequence. From the top of the box, Alex Ring found a wide open Jon Gallagher who beat the goalie, but a Timbers defender was able to keep it out of the goal. Fagundez got the rebound and passed it back to Sebastian Driussi, who one-timed it into the back of the net.

It was the first goal for Driussi, who is Austin’s third designated player and was making just his third start.

Brad Stuver gave up a goal in the 55th minute on a strike by Dairon Asprilla from 24 yards out. But that was the only shot that got past Stuver, who finished with five saves.

The win improves Austin to 5-11-4. They now have 19 points, which is tied with Houston for worst in the Western Conference, but the Live Oaks have the tie breaker over the Dynamo, so they’re no longer in last in the West.

After playing three games in eight days, Austin is off until a week from Sunday, when Dallas makes its first visit to Q2. FC Dallas has a 2-2 draw with Houston on Saturday night.

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