Thorns FC Clinch 1-0 Road Win against Chicago Red Stars in Second Match of 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. - In their second match of the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup, Portland Thorns FC clinched a 1-0 win over the Chicago Red Stars at SeatGeek Stadium on Thursday evening. Morgan Weaver tallied the game-winning goal in the 66th minute to help Thorns FC earn their second straight win in the tournament and move to the top of the West Division in the Challenge Cup standings.
2021 Challenge Cup Standings
Portland (2-0-0, 6pts) sits in the first place in the West Division in the Challenge Cup standings. The Houston Dash (0-0-1, 1pt) occupy the second spot and Chicago (0-1-1, 1pt) ranks third with OL Reign (0-0-0, 0pts) in fourth and KC NWSL (0-1-0, 0pts) in fifth place. In the East Division, the North Carolina Courage (1-0-0, 3pts) are in the first spot with in second place NJ/NY Gotham FC (1-0-0, 3pts) and the Washington Spirit (1-1-0, 3pts) in third place based on goal differential. Orlando (0-1-1, 1pt) ranks fourth and Racing Louisville FC (0-1-1, 1pt) in fifth as a result of goal differential.
With the win, Portland extended its unbeaten streak to six games (5-0-1), dating back to the 2020 NWSL Fall Series. During that stretch, Thorns FC are 2-0-1 in road matches. Across those six matches, Portland has outscored its opponents 13-3, while receiving goals from seven different players: Rocky Rodríguez, Lindsey Horan, Sophia Smith, Christine Sinclair, Simone Charley, Tyler Lussi and Weaver.
Thursday's match marked the 23rd meeting all-time between Portland and Chicago. It was the second time the two teams squared off in the Challenge Cup with the two teams playing to a scoreless draw in the preliminary round on July 1, 2020. Thorns FC improved to 11-2-10 across all competitions against the Red Stars. Notably, Portland has recorded a shutout in four of its last five matches against Chicago.
POR - Morgan Weaver (Celeste Boureille), 66th minute: Celeste Boureille delivered a pass from midfield that dropped in behind the Chicago backline. Weaver ran into the space and beat Casey Krueger with two touches into the box, slotting the ball inside of the right post.
Portland is unbeaten in its last six matches (5-0-1), including a mark of 2-0-1 on the road.
Weaver scored her second career professional goal. Both of her goals have come in the Challenge Cup.
Weaver's first goal came in a 1-0 win against North Carolina on July 17th, 2020. Both goals served as the lone goal and game winner respectively and were just minutes apart (68th and 66th minute).
Boureille tallied the second assist of her NWSL career. It was her first assist since June 15, 2019, when she registered an assist on the road against North Carolina.
Meaghan Nally made her Thorns FC and NWSL debut, entering the match in the 83rd minute.
Emily Menges made her season debut in the match, logging 19 minutes as a substitute. It was Menges' first substitute appearance since July 4, 2014 during her rookie season, which also came against the Red Stars.
Meghan Klingenberg started and played in her eighth Challenge Cup game. Klingenberg is the only Thorns FC player to start and play in every Challenge Cup game for Portland.
Weaver, Rodríguez, Christen Westphal, Angela Salem and Tyler Lussi have all played in every Challenge Cup match for Thorns FC.
Adrianna Franch earned her first clean sheet of 2021, recording five saves in the match.
Rich Gunney served as head coach for the match due to head coach Mark Parsons' red card suspension. Gunney was also the head coach for Portland in a road match against Chicago in 2018, earning a 3-2 win on March 31.
Thorns FC return home to face OL Reign on Wednesday, April 21, at Providence Park; kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m. (Pacific) and features a national television broadcast on CBS Sports Network.
Portland Thorns FC vs. Chicago Red Stars - 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup
April 15, 2021 - SeatGeek Stadium (Bridgeview, IL)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Portland Thorns FC 0 1 1
Chicago Red Stars 0 0 0
POR: Weaver (Boureille), 66
POR: Westphal (caution), 45
CHI: Stevens (caution), 85
POR: GK Franch, D Westphal (Menges 71), D Kuikka, D Hubly, D Pogarch, M R. Rodríguez (Salem 46), M Boureille, M Klingenberg ©, M Everett (Nally, 83), F Weaver, F Lussi
Substitutes Not Used: GK Bixby, GK Angerer, GK Hogan, M Fitzgerald
TOTAL SHOTS: 9 (Rodríguez, Everett, 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 1 (Weaver, 1); FOULS: 9 (Westphal, Hubly, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 4; SAVES: 4
CHI: GK Miller, D Krueger, D Wright, D Milazzo (Johnson, 71), D Gorden, M Colaprico (Stanton, 80), M Gautrat, M Woldmoe (Hill, 71), M Dibernardo (Stevens, 80), F Doniak (Luebbert 57), F Watt
Substitutes Not Used: GK Lowder, D Morse, D Goralski, F Pugh
TOTAL SHOTS: 8 (Doniak, Johnson, 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (Doniak, Johnson, 2); FOULS: 10 (Wright, Colaprico, 2); OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 8; SAVES: 0
Referee: Karen Callado
Assistant Referees: Laura Waliski, Art Arustamyan
4th Official: Lukasz Szpala
Weather: Partly cloudy, 50 degrees
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial
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