2019 Thorns Awards, 12.18.19
Photos by Craig Mitchelldyer

Thorns FC announce 2019 Club Awards

PORTLAND, Ore. – Following the conclusion of the 2019 National Women’s Soccer League season, four Portland Thorns FC players were named recipients of club awards for the 2019 campaign.

Highlighting this season’s list of award winners in the club’s seventh season are defender Emily Menges, forward Midge Purce, midfielder Christine Sinclair and forward Hayley Raso.

Most Valuable Player, Defender of the Year – Emily Menges 
Menges was named Most Valuable Player for the first time in her Thorns FC career and Defender for the Year for the third time since being selected by Portland in the 2014 NWSL College Draft. In 2019, Menges started and played in 19 games, logging 1,665 minutes. Notably, Menges did not commit a foul during the campaign. Defensively, Thorns FC recorded eight clean sheets during the regular season, which ranked as the second-most in a single season in club history. Additionally, Menges reached career milestones, surpassing 10,000 career minutes and appearing in her 100th NWSL match on May 18 against the Washington Spirit

Supporters’ Player of the Year, Co-Community MVP – Midge Purce
Voted on by Thorns FC fans and presented after the team’s final regular-season home match on Oct. 12, Purce was named Supporters’ Player of the Year. She was also recognized for her efforts in the Portland community as Co-Community MVP and was honored at the team’s annual Stand Together Banquet on Sept. 8. During the 2019 campaign, Purce ranked tied for sixth in the NWSL with eight goals, appearing in 22 matches. Off the field, Purce visited a local children’s hospital and played games and delivered Thorns FC gifts to patients. She also took part in the Girl Strong Clinic with 75 young women as she helped teach young girls about mindfulness, health and empowerment, the Rose City Readers program and spent time at Chelsea’s Closet, sorting and organizing toys for seriously ill children in hospitals during Stand Together Week. 

Golden Boot – Christine Sinclair
Midfielder Christine Sinclair lead Thorns FC in goals for the second time in the last three seasons, tallying nine goals in her seventh NWSL campaign. Sinclair finished the regular season tied for third in the NWSL in goals. It marked the sixth time in seven seasons that Sinclair has tallied at least six goals. She also recorded her second career hat-trick – the seventh multi-goal game of her NWSL career – in a 4-4 draw on the road against the Chicago Red Stars on April 20. 

Co-Community MVP – Hayley Raso
Raso, along with Purce, visited a local children’ hospital together to spend time with children, play games and deliver special Thorns FC gifts to the patients. At the hospital, Raso met an inspiring eight year old named Rohen and the pair instantly bonded. Rohen and Hayley remained in contact throughout the season and he frequently attended Thorns FC matches to show his support. During Stand Together Week, Raso joined volunteers to help fix up new homes for families in need with the Willamette West Habitat for Humanity. She also has been active with the Pixie Project, a non-profit animal adoption center and rescue, fostering two kittens.

2019 Portland Thorns FC Club Awards
Most Valuable Player, Defender of the Year – Emily Menges
Supporters’ Player of the Year, Co-Community MVP – Midge Purce
Golden Boot – Christine Sinclair
Co-Community MVP – Hayley Raso

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