PORTLAND, Ore. – Returning from a two-match road trip, Portland Thorns FC defeated the Houston Dash 2-0 in front of a season-high 19,672 fans at Providence Park on Saturday night.
With the win, Thorns FC (10-5-4, 34pts) have won five straight home games, a new team record, improving to 8-1-1 at Providence Park this season, which ties their single-season record for most home wins in a season (2016). Additionally, Portland earned its eighth shutout of the season, which is a new single-season record for the club. Portland is now five points behind league-leading North Carolina FC (39pts), and five points ahead of the third-place Chicago Red Stars (29pts).
Portland scored the opening goal of the match in the 14th minute when midfielder Lindsey Horan got on the end of defender Meghan Klingenberg’s service from the left flank, heading past Houston goalkeeper Jane Campbell to record her fourth goal of the season. The assist was Klingenberg’s team-leading fifth of 2017 season, which is tied for the second-most in the NWSL.
Thorns FC doubled their lead at the start of the second half after threatening the Houston goal. Forward Christine Sinclair received a cross inside the box, passing it to midfielder Amandine Henry, who blasted a shot that forced Campbell into a diving save in the 47th minute. Collecting the loose ball on the left wing seconds later, second-half substitute Nadia Nadim crossed the ball to an unmarked Henry in the six-yard box, heading past Campbell to give Portland a 2-0 lead. The goal marked Henry’s second-straight match with a goal and her third of the 2017 campaign.
Portland nearly added a third goal when second-half substitute Mallory Weber played a driven pass into the center of the box that picked out Sinclair. With time on the ball, Sinclair played a pass at the right edge of the penalty area to Nadim, who rifled her shot inches past the far post in the 83rd minute.
Holding a 20-7 shot advantage over Houston (7-10-2, 23pts) in the match, Portland created a number of scoring chances. Thorns FC nearly scored in the 41st minute when Henry drove in a pass from the right edge of the penalty area towards the center of the box towards Sinclair, whose one-timed effort struck the crossbar. After earning a free kick, Horan’s shot from 25-yards went over the Houston wall and was caught by Campbell in the 75th minute. Continuing to push forward, Sinclair drove in a pass from the right wing inside the box to Nadim. The Danish International laid the ball off to second-half substitute Allie Long at the top of the box. Long took a touch to avoid a Houston defender and drove a low shot that Campbell saved in the 85th minute.
Thorns FC goalkeeper Adrianna Franch recorded two saves, earning her eighth shutout of the season, which set a new team record for shutouts in a single season.
Up next, Thorns FC travel to face Seattle Reign FC on Saturday, Aug. 26, at Memorial Stadium; kickoff is set for 1 p.m. (Pacific) and features a live, high-definition web stream available at www.nwslsoccer.com and www.go90.com.
Portland Thorns FC (10-5-4, 34pts) at Houston Dash (7-10-2, 23pts)
Aug. 19, 2017 – Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Thorns FC 1 1 2
Houston Dash 0 0 0
POR: Horan (Klingenberg), 27
POR: Henry (Nadim), 48
POR: Brynjarsdottir (Caution), 32
HOU: Beckie (Caution), 61
POR: Sinclair (Caution), 70
HOU: Daly (Caution), 73
HOU: Levin (Caution), 76
POR: Sonnett (Caution), 79
HOU: Daly (Ejection), 80
Lineups & Stats
POR: GK Franch, D Reynolds, D Sonnett, D Menges, D Klingenberg, M Henry (Long, 54), M Horan, M Sinclair ©, F Sykes, F Raso (Weber, 78), F Brynjarsdottir (Nadim, 46)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Eckerstrom, D Cox, D Johnson, M Boureille
TOTAL SHOTS: 20 (Sinclair, 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Henry, Horan, 2); FOULS: 18 (Raso, 5); OFFSIDES: 2; CORNER KICKS: 6; SAVES: 2
HOU: GK Campbell, D Poliana, D Brooks ©, D Van Wyk (Benites, 75), D Levin, M Roccaro (Falknor, 86), M Beckie, M Andressinha, F Daly, F Hagen (Privett, 57), F Prince
Substitutes Not Used: GK Henninger, M Conheeney, M Heap
TOTAL SHOTS: 7 (Beckie, Poliana, 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 2 (Hagen, Prince, 1); FOULS: 14 (Andressinha, 4); OFFSIDES: 4; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 4
Referee: Christina Unkel
Assistant Referees: Adrienne McDonald, Andrew Deuker
4th Official: Sya Magee
Weather: Clear, 76 degrees
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial.