CHALLENGE CUP CHAMPIONSHIP RECAP | Portland Thorns FC 1 (6), NJ/NY Gotham FC 1 (5)

PORTLAND, Ore.- Portland Thorns FC won the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup Championship after a penalty kick shootout against NJ/NY Gotham FC on Saturday at Providence Park. Morgan Weaver scored the championship-winning kick after Adrianna Franch denied Nahomi Kawasumi moments earlier to win the shootout 6-5 after the clubs battled to a 1-1 draw in regulation.

The goals were scored by the two active leading international scorers with Portland's Christine Sinclair and Gotham FC's Carli Lloyd scoring in regulation. 

Match Moments

8' — GOAL (POR) — Christine Sinclair gave the home team an early lead just eight minutes into the Championship. The Canadian International stole the ball from Carli Lloyd, found space in Gotham FC's midfield and fired home a curling left-footed effort from 20 yards. 

25' — SHOT (POR) — After Simone Charley headed down a cross, Sophia Smith's shot flew wide of the Gotham FC net.

30' — SHOT (POR) — On a Meghan Klingenber corner kick, Lindsay Horan rose above the defense before putting a header wide of target. 

33' — SHOT (POR) — Smith forced a diving save when she received a lead pass from Charley, dribbled towards goal and took a shot on frame from a tough angle. 

36' — SHOT (POR) — Charley forced a corner when she found herself one-on-one with goalkeeper Didi Haracic but the Bosnian International goalkeeper was quick off her line and was able to save Charley's shot over the bar. 

39' — POST (POR) — Horan rattled the post when she fired a free kick past the wall and a sprawling Haracic. Horan's free kick came about 20 yards from goal after Charley was dragged down by a defender. 

50' — SHOT (POR) — It was again Horan forcing a save when her header from a Klingenberg cross was caught by Haracic. 

61' — GOAL (GFC) — Carli Lloyd tied the match when she headed home for Gotham FC on the club's first shot on goal of the match. 

69' — SHOT (POR) — Smith fired over the goal from ten yards out after Sinclair laid the ball off to her. 

71' — SHOT (POR) — Portland forced a turnover in Gotham FC's half but Smith's shot went into the outside netting. 

72' — SHOT (POR) — Charley was inches away from giving the Thorns the lead when she toe-poked a cross past the goalkeeper only to be denied by a goalline clearance from Mandy Freeman. 

75' — SHOT (POR) — After finding space behind a defender, Sinclair's header flew just wide of the far post. 

76' — SHOT (POR) — Sinclair sent a ball into space for Smith but the 20-year-old forward sent her shot wide of the target. 

86' — SAVE (GFC) — Haracic again denied the Thorns when she made a diving, fingertip save on Sinclair. 

Portland Thorns FC vs. NJ/NY Gotham FC- 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup Championship

May 8, 2021 – Providence Park (Portland, Ore.)

Goals by Half                 1          2          F          PKs

Portland Thorns FC       1          0         1             (6)

Gotham FC                   0          1         1             (5)

Scoring Summary: 

POR: Sinclair, 8

NJNY: Lloyd (Dorsey), 61

Shootout Summary

1 NJNY: Long – Goal

1 POR: Sinclair – Goal

2 NJNY: Lloyd – Goal

2 POR: Klingenberg – Miss

3 NJNY: Cudjoe – Miss

3 POR: Horan – Goal

4 NJNY: Freeman – Goal

4 POR: Rodriguez – Goal

5 NJNY: Onumonu – Goal

5 POR: Dunn – Goal

6 NJNY: Viens – Goal

6 POR: Sauerbrunn– Goal

7 NJNY: Kawasumi– Saved

7 POR: Weaver– Goal

Misconduct Summary:

NJ/NY: Lewandowski (caution), 38

POR: Charley (caution), 79


POR: GK Franch, D Kuikka (Westphal, 68), D Hubly, D Sauerbrunn, D Klingenberg, M Salem (Rodriguez, 68), M Horan, M Dunn, F Sinclair ©, F Smith (Weaver, 76), F Charley

Substitutes Not Used: GK Bixby, D Nally, D Pogarch, M Boureille, F Everett

TOTAL SHOTS: 26 (Horan, 12); SHOTS ON GOAL: 7 (three players tied, 2); FOULS: 8 (Smith, Horan, 2); OFFSIDES: 3; CORNER KICKS: 12; SAVES: 0

NJ/NY: GK Haracic, D Dorsey, D Lewandowski (Johnson, 45), D Dydasco (Flores, 82), D Freeman, M Long, M Cudjoe, M Kawasumi, F Purce (Onumonu, 73), F Lloyd ©, F Monaghan (Viens, 73)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Sheridan, GK McGlynn, D Skroski, M Baxter, M Richardson

TOTAL SHOTS: 8 (Lloyd, 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 1 (Lloyd, 1); FOULS: 9 (Lloyd, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 9; SAVES: 6

Referee: Natalie Simon

Assistant Referees: Brooke Mayo, Deleana Quan

4th Official: Karen Callado

Weather: Cloudy, 63 degrees

All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial

Remembering Victory: Thorns win the 2021 Challenge Cup: