SEATTLE, WA— (club report) In the first of four regular-season matches this season, Seattle Reign FC (2-2-1, 7 pts) came from behind to secure a 1-1 draw against Portland Thorns FC (2-0-3, 9 pts) at Memorial Stadium in front of a crowd of 4,631.
MATCH GALLERY: by Wilson Tsoi
Just three minutes after kickoff, forward Manon Melis was forced to leave the match after a non-contact injury. Carson Pickett replaced Melis in the fifth minute, with Seattle head coach Laura Harvey shifting forward Kiersten Dallstream to the opposite side of the field to make way for the left-footed Pickett.
Both teams saw a handful of scoring opportunities in the first half, though none hit their mark. In the 38th minute, Portland forward Lindsey Horan fouled defender Elli Reed near the left corner of the box, earning a free kick that was taken by defender Lauren Barnes. Midfielder Keelin Winters tried to put Barnes’ cross away with a diving header from the left side of the box, but she sent it over the crossbar.
Portland took the lead in the 47th minute when midfielder Meg Morris chipped a ball inside the six-yard box between goalkeeper Hope Solo and defender Lauren Barnes, neither of whom moved to clear the ball, leaving it for Portland forward Nadia Nadim, who headed the ball above Solo into the back of the net for her first goal of the season.
Reign FC immediately responded to level the score in the 49th minute off a corner from Lauren Barnes, which forward Beverly Yanez headed into the left side of the frame.
As the game progressed it became increasingly physical. The referee apparently suffered from a strange form of paralysis that prevented him from pulling a yellow card from his pocket until late in the game, despite a plethora of bodies in blue that littered the field.
In the 62nd minute, midfielder Keelin Winters collided with Morris and took several moments to regain her footing. Yanez then took an elbow to the mouth in the 66th minute while fighting for possession in the center circle. Pickett spent time on the sidelines after taking an elbow to the face in the 78th minute, after which Reed was smashed by Meg Morris and collapsed to the ground, where she lay motionless for several moments. Morris was subsequently issued a caution for the foul.
Despite the physical play, Seattle controlled possession for most of the 2nd half, but was unable to find the game-winner. The match ended at 1-1, for the first draw between the two clubs, leaving Seattle’s all-time record against Portland at 4-5-1.
Although the draw wasn’t the result she was hoping for, Reign FC head coach Laura Harvey was pleased with her team’s performance given last week’s 0-2 loss to Orlando Pride.
“We obviously reduced them to minimal chances,” said Harvey. “But I think we should be disappointed that we didn’t win, given the amount of possession we had and pressure that we put on them.”
The Pacific Northwest clubs will face off again on Sunday, May 29 at Providence Park in Portland, Ore.
Next weekend, Reign FC will host the Chicago Red Stars (3-1-1, 10 points) on Sunday, May 22 at 4:00 p.m. PT. Tickets begin at $18 and are available at reignfc.com/redstars or by calling (855)-REIGN-FC.
Match: Seattle Reign FC vs. Portland Thorns FC
Date: May 14, 2016
Venue: Memorial Stadium – Seattle, Wash.
Kickoff: 7:00 p.m. PT
Weather: 63 degrees – Scattered showers
Goals by Half
SEA 0 1, 1 Total
POR 0 1, 1 Total
POR – 47’ Nadim (Morris)
SEA – 49’ Yanez (Barnes)
POR – Caution – Lindsey Horan
POR – Caution – Meg Morris
Lineups & Stats
SEA: GK Hope Solo, D Lauren Barnes, D Kendall Fletcher, D Rachel Corsie, D Elli Reed, M Keelin Winters ©, M Kim Little, F Manon Melis (5’ Carson Pickett), F Beverly Yanez, F Kiersten Dallstream, F Merritt Mathias (81’ Lindsay Elston)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Haley Kopmeyer, D Paige Nielsen, D Michelle Cruz, M Havana Solaun
Head Coach: Laura Harvey
POR: GK Adrianna Franch, D Kathrine Reynolds, D Emily Menges, D Emily Sonnett, D Meghan Klingenberg, M Meg Morris, M Dagny Brynjarsdottir (74’ Hayley Raso), M Allie Long, M Lindsey Horan, M Mana Shim (56’ Christine Sinclair), F Nadia Nadim
Substitutes Not Used: D McKenzie Berryhill, M Celeste Boureille, F Mallory Weber
Head Coach: Mark Parsons
About Seattle Reign FC:
Seattle Reign FC is one of ten teams in the National Women’s Soccer League. The NWSL is the premier women’s professional soccer league in North America, featuring many of the top players from the United States, Canada and around the world. Seattle Reign FC train and host home matches at Memorial Stadium, located in the shadow of the Space Needle on the Seattle Center campus. For more information on the club visit reignfc.com.