NWSL MATCH RECAP | Houston Dash 1, Portland Thorns FC 1

HOUSTON – After conceding a goal in the opening 10 minutes, Portland Thorns FC fought back to earn a point on the road as midfielder Lindsey Horan delivered a free-kick goal in second-half stoppage time to earn a 1-1 draw against the Houston Dash in front of 3,869 fans on Saturday night at BBVA Compass Stadium.

Outshooting Houston 14-7 in the second half, Thorns FC (5-4-4, 19pts) recorded eight shots in the final 10 minutes, pushing for the equalizer. In second-half stoppage time, midfielder Allie Long was fouled from behind by Houston defender Amber Brooks, earning Portland a free kick. Horan addressed the ball and deposited a perfectly struck free kick from 25 yards out into the top left corner of the goal to level the match.

Thorns FC opened the second half with a flurry of chances, including a set-piece opportunity in the 55th minute. Defender Meghan Klingenberg floated the ball into the box near the penalty spot for Long, who was able to beat Houston goalkeeper Jane Campbell coming off her line to punch the ball, but sent a headed shot just over the crossbar. Long was able to find space again less than 10 minutes later, making a late run into the box, Sinclair slotted a pass to Long, but her low, hard shot was stopped by Campbell in the 61st minute.

Forward Hayley Raso collected a loose ball in the box off a deflected cross played in from the right wing by defender Celeste Boureille. Raso settled the ball at the back post, but the attempt was blocked and skipped just wide of the post in the 80th minute. Less than a minute later, forward Tyler Lussi, who made her professional debut in the match, received the ball inside the box and took a quick touch before firing a powerful left-footed strike on target that skimmed off the head of a Houston player and out for a corner kick.

Trailing 1-0 after a goal by Houston (4-7-2, 15pts) midfielder Janine Beckie in the eighth minute, Portland remained on the front foot, finishing the match with 58.7 percent of the possession, while also tallying a season-high 21 shots. 

Forward Christine Sinclair nearly evened the match off a long free kick in the 34th minute. Defender Emily Sonnett served the ball into the box from near midfield. The ball was initially cleared by a Dash defender but landed at the feet of Sinclair, who lobbed a shot towards the top left corner of the goal, but Campbell made a one-handed save, pushing the ball over the crossbar.

Klingenberg created an additional scoring chance early in the first half, dribbling down the left side of the field before cutting back across the box, but her curling shot was cleared from inside the box in the 16th minute. Raso was able to get behind the Houston backline in the 28th minute, receiving a ball flicked into space by Long, but Raso sent a half-volley attempt from the edge of the box high of the target.

Portland goalkeeper Adrianna Franch finished the match with four saves, making a critical stop to deny Houston forward Nichelle Prince in the 71st minute as she quickly came off her line, sliding to stop Prince from close range.

Thorns FC return to the Rose City to open up a three-game home stand, beginning with a match against the North Carolina Courage on Saturday, July 15. The July 15 match kicks off at 12:30 p.m. (Pacific) with a national television broadcast on Lifetime. 
 
Notes:

·         Midfielder Lindsey Horan tallied her third goal of the season.

·         Six of Horan’s eight career goals for Portland have been either game-tying or game-winning goals.

·         Portland finished the match with a season-high 21 shots, tied for the fifth-most shots in a regular-season match in club history.

·         Defender Emily Menges started her 33rd consecutive match, dating back to 2016. Menges has now played 2,970 consecutive minutes.

·         Menges and defender Emily Sonnett are the only two field players to have played all 1,170 minutes this season.

·         Forward Tyler Lussi and midfielder Ashley Herndon both made their professional debuts in the match.

Portland Thorns FC (5-4-4, 19pts) at Houston Dash (4-7-2, 15pts) 
July 8, 2017 – BBVA Compass Stadium (Houston, Texas)

Goals by Half                1          2          F
Portland Thorns FC      0          1         1
Houston Dash               1          0          1

Scoring Summary
HOU: Beckie (Daly), 8
POR: Horan, 90+1

Misconduct Summary
POR: Horan (caution), 45+1
HOU: Bruna (caution), 83
HOU: Daly (caution), 90
HOU: Lloyd (ejection), 90+1

Lineups & Stats
POR: GK Franch, D Boureille, D Sonnett, D Menges, D Klingenberg, M Long, M Shim (Lussi, 46), M Horan, F Raso (Herndon, 84), F Sinclair ©, F Sykes (Weber, 65)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Eckerstrom, D Johnson, D Cox, D Hubly

TOTAL SHOTS: 21 (Long, Sinclair, 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Sinclair, 2); FOULS: 12 (Three players tied, 2); OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 8; SAVES: 4

HOU: GK Campbell, D Poliana, D Brooks, D Van Wyk, D Levin, M Privett, M Adressinha (Bruna, 70), M Beckie (Heap, 75), F Daly, F Lloyd ©, F Prince (Hagen)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Williams, D Roccaro, D Falknor 

TOTAL SHOTS: 15 (Lloyd, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Beckie, Daly, 2); FOULS: 11 (Lloyd, 6); OFFSIDES: 2; CORNER KICKS: 4; SAVES: 4

Referee: Christina Unkel
Assistant Referees: Deleana Quan, Brooke Mayo
4th Official: Estefania Estrada
Attendance: 3,689
Weather: Cloudy, 80 degrees

All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial.

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