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Match Recap and Highlights: Portland Thorns 4-1 Kansas City Current
It was the Sophia Smith show as the Thorns downed the Current.
The Portland Thorns jumped out early and then ran away in the end as they beat the Kansas City Current 4-1 on Saturday morning.
Crystal Dunn opened the scoring off a set piece, and Sophia Smith added a second via a penalty kick in the first half. KC pulled one back via Cece Kizer in the second half, but Smith added two more goals late, netting a hat trick for the 2022 NWSL MVP and sealing the deal for the defending 2022 NWSL Champs.
The Thorns’ lineup looked pretty similar to what we’ve seen so far this season. It was the same XI they went with in their first game.
The game started with a bang, as Crystal Dunn buried a shot in the third minute. After a battery of shots from Portland, their second goal came in the form of a PK. Sophia Smith was brought down in the box and she buried her opportunity.
In the second half, KC was far more threatening than in the first half. They found their first goal off the head of Cece Kizer. Smith, however, put the nail in the coffin when she took on most of KC’s backline to net Portland’s third goal. Shortly after that, she netted her third and Portland’s fourth. Reyna Reyes also made her debut as a Thorn.
1’ Kick-off in Kansas City!
3’ PORTLAND GOAL! Crystal Dunn put away a corner from Coffey with a simple one-touch shot, into the near post.
6’ Smith has a shot that goes wide. She found herself open against Franch but was unable to capitalize.
8’ Dunn was dragged down in the box, but the ref didn’t call anything and it was called a goal-kick.
9’ Weaver with a shot that sailed over the top of the goal.
10’ Sinclair tried to chip Franch but the keeper was able to snatch it out of the air.
11’ Kizer was working to find the goal, but Sauerbrunn did well to body her off the ball.
12’ Smith with a shot from the edge of the six that Franch was able to collect.
14’ Coffey sent a free-kick from outside. of the box looking for Sinclair, but it was sent away.
15’ PORTLAND GOAL #2! This time the penalty kick was called. Smith was taken out in the box and she stepped up to the line to take it, slotting it away in the side netting.
21’ Cooper was trying to make her way through the Thorns’ defense but she was shut down.
30’ Sugita drew a yellow card for her tackle on Kizer. KC sent the free kick out of bounds, however.
31’ Dunn sent Sugita through toward the goal but it was cleared away by KC.
32’ Sinclair found herself in front of the goal but her shot sailed wide.
35’ Kuikka was dragged down by Cooper and the Thorns recovered possession.
37’ Another corner for Portland, this one was taken by Kling. Her service in was cleared away by KC.
38’ Smith was through again, this time her shot was saved by Franch on the near post.
39’ After a header from Sinclair in the box, Sugita found the rebound but it went out of play.
42’ Weaver got a shot off but it again went sailing.
Two minutes of stoppage time were added to the first half but nothing comes of them and the half ended Portland 2- KC 0.
46’ No changes were made for either side starting the second half.
46’ LaBonta was looking for Cooper but it got away from her and the Thorns saw it out.
47’ Smith found Weaver who slotted a ball in looking for Sugita but it doesn’t make contact.
48’ Cooper fired off a shot but it went over the crossbar.
49’ KC really squandered an opportunity, it was Del Fava against Bixby but her shot was sent soaring into the crowd.
50’ This time Kizer found a shot but it was again off-target.
51’ Kizer yet again, this time her header was sent out of bounds.
58’ Coffey dragged down Labonta giving KC a free kick outside of the box. KC netted their first goal of the game, via Kizer with a header off of the service. PDX 2-1 KC.
60’ A few subs for Portland: Moultrie joined the game for Dunn, D’Aquila came on for Sugita, and Vasconcelos replaced Weaver.
64’ Bixby came out to clear the ball and it was deflected off KC but remained in Bixby’s possession.
66’ KC earned a free kick on the edge of the Portland box, and Hubly earned a yellow for her foul. Bixby came up with a save, keeping the lead for Portland.
69’ Moultrie’s touch got away from her in the box, she was hoping to control the through ball, instead, it’s cleared away.
71’ Smith was looking for a goal, but Franch saved it, pushing it wide.
77’ Rodriguez replaced Sinclair, the captain’s band goes to Sauerbrunn.
83’ PORTLAND GOAL #3! Smith found a way through a mass of KC players and her ball trickled into the goal past Franch.
84’ Vasconcelos fired off a shot from outside the 18, but it trickled wide.
86’ Kling got two hands to the throat from Debinha but nothing is called, she just had to take a breather.
88’ SMITH NETTED A HAT-TRICK! Portland 4-1 KC. Smith took the ball across the 18 and netted a beautiful goal from distance.
90’ Smith was hoping for a fourth but this shot hit the side-netting.
Three minutes of extra time were added to the second half.
90+1’ Reyna Reyes made her Thorns debut as she replaced Kling.
And the match ends Portland 4-1 KC.
The Thorns followed up their season opening four goal performance with a repeat, and won their first away match in emphatic fashion.
Portland will next be in action in two weeks, when return home to take on the Houston Dash on April 14 at 7:30 p.m. PT at Providence Park.