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Match Recap & Highlights: Portland Thorns 2-0 OL Reign
The Thorns won the Cascadia Rivalry with Sophia Smith and Christine Sinclair getting the goals.
The Portland Thorns won in Lumen Field for the first time, tallying their first regular season away win in Seattle since 2017 behind an early goal from Sophia Smith, and a late one from Christine Sinclair.
Saturday was big for the Portland and Seattle teams with a doubleheader that saw the Timbers play first while the Thorns finished off the Cascadia Rivalry day.
Regarding the starting XI, Megan Klingenberg was back after missing last week's game and coach Mike Norris decided to give Olivia Moultrie a nod.
As always, Sophia Smith was the most dangerous forward on the Thorns but she still had to break her seven games drought which she did at minute 17.
OL Reign looked a little flat at first but Elyse Bennett started to create some problems for the Thorns at the end of the first half.
The second half didn’t go better for the Reign and the visitors scored once more.
5’ Sophia Smith passes the ball to Hina Sugita on the right. The Japanese international sent a low cross to Smith who couldn’t get to the ball on time.
11’ Kuikka clears a ball that otherwise Megan Rapinoe would’ve headed and that was dangerously close to the Thorns goal.
15’ Smith passes the ball to Weaver. Her first touch is a little heavy and the ball goes to the corner.
17’ SOPHIA SMITH SCORES! She hits the ball from outside the box in front of two defenders that try to close her down but can’t do it on time.
23’ Emily Menges clears Rapinoe’s on-frame shot.
31’ Elyse Bennett’s shoot is just inches wide.
43’ Morgan Weaver shoots, but it was high.
45’ Free kick for Portland. Olivia Moultrie goes for goal but the shot is wide.
50’ Weaver sends the perfect ball to Sugita, she connects with the cross on the far post but can’t direct it properly.
55’ Great ball by Huerta to Rapinoe. She shoots but Bella Bixby doesn’t hesitate to grab that ball.
60’ Chance for OL Reign but it goes wide. Bixby ends up injured while trying to defend her goal. After being treated by the medic, she’s good to go.
65’ Crystal Dunn shoots but it sails high.
66’ Substitutions: Becky Sauerbrunn and Christine Sinclair enter for Menges and Moultrie.
70’ Substitutions: Reyna Reyes enters for Natalia Kuikka.
87’ CHRISTINE SINCLAIR GOAL! Klingenberg sends a long pass to Weaver. She cruises to get to it and waits until Sinclair gets to the box from behind. The Canadian finishes with expertise.
89’ Substitution: Michele Vasconcelos enters for Sugita.
90+1’ Smith shoots but it goes wide.
Thanks to this win, the Thorns are temporarily back in first place. We will have to wait until Gotham’s game tomorrow to see if Portland remains in the top spot or not.
It was good to see Sophia Smith scoring again. For sure that goal will give her confidence and will bring tranquility to some nervous fans who were begging for her to score again.
Weaver had a great game and her skills helped the team to secure the win. It was nice to see Olivia as a starter in such a pivotal match and it was also nice to see Sinc make an impact as a sub.
Finally a big shout-out to our defense and our midfield. It is important to say that Crystal and Sam killed it in the middle of the park, winning a total of 19 duels between both of them (Coffey = 9, Dunn = 10)
The Thorns will be back next Sunday, June 11, to play Orlando in Florida. But for now, the mission has been accomplished. The “Jersey Curse” has been broken and the Reign have been beatn. Let’s go home.