Three quick thoughts on the Thorns FC victory

Want a recipe for an epic day in women’s soccer? Take Portland Thorns FC defender Jazmyne Avant absolutely nailing the United States national anthem, Karina LeBlanc’s hair, add the Rose City Riveters beautiful tifo and finally throw in 16,479 fans rocking Jeld Wen Field and you have a pretty phenomenal day.

It was most definitely a more epic day for Thorns FC supporters as they watched goals from Marian Dougherty and Alex Morgan lead Portland to a 2-1 victory over Seattle Reign FC.

Here’s three quick thoughts on the match:

* Christine Sinclair is pretty good.

Cindy Parlow-Cone said this about Sinclair in the postgame press conference: “Everybody talks about Christine in terms of scoring goals but she’s one of the best passers in all of women’s soccer.”

Coach hits the nail on the head there. NWSL needs to get some Opta Stats, because I’d be drooling over Sinclair’s heat map and distribution chart from today’s match. She was in one word: spectacular.

* Cindy Parlow-Cone can coach.

If you watched the first match of the season against FC Kansas City, you know the team didn’t display the kind of play Thorns FC was hoping for and Christine Sinclair and Alex Morgan had way too few touches. In this match, Cone had Sinclair playing more withdrawn and underneath Morgan. As a result, Sinclair had many more touches on the ball and a much more influential impact on the match.

* Still room for improvement.

We saw some terrific flashes of brilliance from Thorns FC yesterday and with time, things should only get better. It’s still amazing to think that last week was only the first time every Thorns FC player was available for a full week of practice. That definitely showed against Seattle as every player was much improved over their first match in Kansas City. I have to think that every more steps will be taken in the next match against Chicago Red Stars.

Quotable:

Cindy Parlow-Cone on the atmosphere at JELD-WEN Field for the first Thorns FC home game:
“This was awesome. I was walking around the field with Rachel Buehler and we looked at each other and she’s like, ‘This is like the World Cup!’ That’s what it felt like. It felt like that atmosphere we had at the World Cup and at the Olympics. It was an unbelievable atmosphere.”

Game Stats:

Portland Thorns FC (1-0-1, 4pts) vs. Seattle Reign FC (0-1-1, 1pts)
April 21, 2013 – JELD-WEN Field (Portland, Ore.)

Goals by Half                1          2          F
Portland                        1          1          2
Seattle                            0          1          1

Scoring Summary
POR: Dougherty (Washington), 45
POR: Morgan (Sinclair), 52
SEA: Fishlock, 74

Misconduct Summary
POR: Long (Caution), 10
POR: Kerr (Caution), 11
SEA: Reed (Caution), 30
SEA: Nairn (Caution), 33
POR: Washington (Caution), 68
SEA: Fishlock (Caution), 78

Lineups & Stats
POR: GK Karina LeBlanc, D Marian Dougherty, D Kathryn Williamson, D Rachel Buehler, D Nikki Marshall, M Nikki Washington, M Becky Edwards, M Angie Kerr (Danielle Foxhoven, 76), M Allie Long (Courtney Wetzel, 80), F Christine Sinclair, F Alex Morgan

Substitutes Not Used: GK Adelaide Gay, D Jazmyne Avant, D Emilee O’Neil, M Meleana Shim, F Jessica Shufelt

TOTAL SHOTS: 11 (Morgan, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Morgan, 2); FOULS: 11 (Long, 4); OFFSIDES: 2; CORNER KICKS: 6; SAVES: 1

SEA: GK Michelle Betos, D Emily Zurrer, D Lauren Barnes (Jenny Ruiz, 84), D Kate Deines, D Ellie Reed, M Kaylyn Kyle, M Teresa Noyola (Kiersten Dallstream, 54), M Jessica Fishlock, M Keelin Winters, M Christine Nairn, F Liz Bogus (Kristina Larsen, 66)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Hayley Kopmeyer, M Lyndsey Patterson, M Kristen Meier,

TOTAL SHOTS: 7 (Three players tied, 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 2 (Fishlock, Nairn, 1); FOULS: 10 (Fishlock, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 2; SAVES: 3

Referee: Josh Wilkens
Assistant Referees: Felisha Mariscal, Desmond Miller
Fourth Official: Jason Perlewitz
Attendance: 16,479
Weather: 51 degrees, overcast

5 thoughts on “Three quick thoughts on the Thorns FC victory

  1. Sincy is the heart and soul of this team. No flaws in her game. She came so far back to get the ball at times that I was wondering where her position was. She’s a goal box to goal box player whose position is “everywhere”. Allie Long was everywhere as well and was the Thorns version of Chara…doing the hard and dirty jobs needed to hold Seattle’s “poor person’s Rapinoe” in check.

    The number of people at the match may have seemed WC worthy, but my estimation is the environment was enhanced by the constant singing and chanting by the supporters. That is something I have not seen at at WWC or Olympics match. Great job by the supporter group to make the day special for everyone.

    1. What’s been interesting to watch is how CPC has asked her to change her style of play and how she’s responded. For UP and for the CWNT she’s a very conventional “big forward” sort of striker; she plays well up the pitch and typically is on the receiving end of through balls and crosses; the CWNT equivalent of Abby Wambach. After the trouble that the Thorns MF had providing service against KCFC CPC has asked her to drop into midfield and play a sort of trequartista for Morgan and Washington, and she has done well there, both in the second half against KCFC and this match.

      And I thought that the Riveters did a great job, especially since the mass of people in GA weren’t familiar with the Portland traditions. The new Thorns songs were a little less raucous than the familiar TA standards, but that’ll come with time. Terrific match and terrific atmosphere!

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