COLUMBUS, OH - JULY 23: James Marcelin #14 of the Portland Timbers and Eddie Gaven #12 of the Columbus Crew battle for a loose ball during the second half on July 23, 2011 at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. Columbus defeated Portland 1-0. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
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Columbus was awarded a pivotal free kick in the 20th minute for an early scoring opportunity, but could not convert. The Timbers would soon miss on a similar opportunity in the 58th minute on a shot that went wide, in a game that was hotly-contested but did not necessarily generate a bevy of scoring chances.
The scoreless outing represents the fifth time in 2012 that Columbus has been shut out by an opponent, and the third time in its last four contests. The Crew currently sits in a tied with Houston for 7th place in the Eastern Conference with 8 points, but needs to start finding the net soon to avoid falling further down the standings.
Next up for Columbus is a home date with FC Dallas, who is 0-3-1 on the road this year.