Go ahead and cross week three of NWSL matches off the board, with last weekend rendering new emerging victors and upsets while raising a fresh batch of league questions as we head into week four.
Is Portland the Team to Beat this Season?
It’s another win for the Portland Thorns after they defeated the Chicago Red Stars 2-0 in Lisle, IL on Saturday.
Forwards Danielle Foxhaven and Chrsitine Sinclair were the stars, delighting fans with back-to-back goals in the second half. Thorns goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc had a satisfying game as well, recording three nice saves and Portland’s first clean sheet of the season.
Foxhaven scored off a rebound after Alex Morgan’s shot was deflected in the 70th minute. Minutes later Sinclair added to the Thorns lead off an assist from Morgan with a smooth right-footed shot that landed inside the far post of the Red Stars net.
Portland lead the board with 7 points, with Sinclair leading in league scoring with two goals and one assist.
POR – Foxhoven 70
POR – Sinclair (Morgan) 81
O’Reilly Shines in Breakers First Season Win against Flash
It was an exciting Saturday for the Boston Breakers with a brace scored by Heather O’Reilly that earned a 2-1 win against WNY Flash in Rochester, NY.
Things got heated on the field after Flash forward Samantha Kerr opened scoring in the 7th minute to give them a 1-0 lead.
The Breakers were not about to let the lead hold for long, as Forward Sydney Leroux took possession. She crossed to Heather O’Reilly who easily put the ball in for the equalizer.
They kept up the momentum after that, and O’Reilly stepped up once again to score the brace in the 83rd minute off an assist from Lianne Sanderson and seal the deal.
WNY – Kerr (Heyboer) 7
BOS – O’Reilly (Leroux) 16
BOS – O’Reilly (Sanderson) 83
Sky Blue FC Shut Down Washington Spirit
Sky Blue FC was rewarded with a nice 2-1 win against Washington Spirit Saturday in Germantown, MD, after a suspenseful back-and-forth match that kept players and fans on edge.
They took the lead off a corner kick in the 2nd minute when forward Danesha Adams sent the ball flying in to CoCo Goodson. The ball found the towering 5’11” player’s head, who was able to knock it in with precision.
Spirit got one back before the end of the half, with forward Diana Mattheson equalizing and leaving Sky Blue fans gritting their teeth.
Sky Blue jumped into the second half with fire in their eyes and at the 48th minute they took possession with a vengeance. Lisa DeVanna crossed to Sophie Schmidt in a well executed play that resulted in the ball sailing into the back of Washington’s net for the win.
SBFC – Goodson (Adams) 2
WSH – Matheson (Lindsey) 35
SBFC – Schmidt (De Vanna) 48
Kansas City FC Notch First Win Against Seattle Reign
Despite wet, rainy conditions in Overland Park, KS on Friday, it didn’t stop Kansas City FC from conquering Seattle Reign 2-0 for their first win of the season.
A corner kick opened scoring in the 21st minute when Lauren Cheney sent a bender flying across the field to Sinead Farrelly, who gracefully headed it in.
Seattle tried their hardest to equalize, but were put down over and over as powerhouse goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart diminished any hopes of a goal.
Renae Cuellar added some cushion to Kansas’ lead at the 71st minute, tucking the ball into the right corner to cement their win.
FCKC – Farrelly (Cheney) 21
FCKC – Cuellar (Cheney) 71
Wambach Misses Flash Home Opener after Head Injury
It was a daunting moment when super star Abby Wambach collapsed to the ground after the final whistle of the WNY Flash vs. Washington Spirit game on April 20.
An accidental ball to the face from teammate Brittany Taylor in the 80th minute of the match made Wambach see stars, and ultimately, was the reason she sat out the Flash’s home opener last Saturday as a pre caution.
“She got peppered in the face from point-blank distance,” Spirit goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris told reporters. “I could tell she was pretty dazed. I said, ‘Are you all right?’ She was mumbling. That’s not a good sign.”
There is no word on whether or not Wambach suffered a concussion, but a team press release stated, “Wambach is progressing each day, but will be taking the necessary steps to ensure a full, healthy recovery.”
No More Guess work: Elizabeth Guess Joins Portland
Late last week Portland Thorns announced the signing of Elizabeth Guess after she was unexpectedly released from the Boston Breakers with no explanation as to why. She left the Breakers tallying up one assist in their first season match against Washington Spirit.
“We are thrilled to have her join us,”said Thorns head coach Cindy Parlow Cone in a press conference. “She is capable of playing both in the midfield and on the front line and she is a great complement to the other players we have on the roster.”
All eight teams gear up for games May 1 and May 4. Tune in to GotSoccer for the latest NWSL news and game recaps.
|1.||Portland Thorns FC||3||2||0||1||7|
|2.||Sky Blue FC||2||2||0||0||6|
|3.||FC Kansas City||2||1||0||1||4|
|6.||Western New York Flash||3||0||2||1||1|
|7.||Chicago Red Stars||2||0||1||1||1|
|8.||Seattle Reign FC||3||0||2||1||1|