You can be forgiven if you don’t know what this has to do with the Timbers. If you’re wondering, read on.
The most gracious man in the MLS has donated the ball he used to score the MLS Cup record setting 27 second goal to the Timbers Army. The images above are from the video and picture in the Timbers Army post that broke the news. Is it possible to retire a jersey number while the player is still playing? Let’s do it! Have you seen the fan-created patch that commemorated the event? Catch the patch and a replay of the goal after the jump.
When my buddy Tom told me his wife had been a cheerleader for the Portland Timbers, I initially scoffed. I had never heard of the team even having a cheer squad–what soccer team does? I couldn’t find a single reference online to there ever being a squad. Nobody I asked had ever heard of it. I thought it must have been a misunderstanding.
Then he brought in the uniform.
The team indeed did have a cheer squad…for one season. The 1981 Portland Timbers were in their seventh year in the NASL as part of the Northwest Division. To add a bit of pizzazz and entertainment to the match, a group of local young women were recruited to accompany Timber Jim as the Timber Jills dance squad.
When I heard about all of this, I of course had to hear more. So one night last fall, as we were on the eve of clutching our first MLS Cup Championship, Tom and I recorded a conversation with two of the members of the squad, Brenda Becker and Judy Bennett, to hear about this mostly forgotten part of Timbers history.
In addition to their story, there are clips of some old school stickers, programs, and of course…the uniform.