Portland Thorns surrender equalizer in injury time to tie Kansas City Currents 1-1

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The Portland Thorns appeared to be back at the top of the National Women’s Soccer League standings, taking control of the fate of their second straight NWSL Shield themselves. But then Hayley Mace set an astonishing record in injury time for Kansas City, with Portland left with just his one point to show the effort after his 1-1 road draw. did not.

Thornes (8-3-8, 32 points, +19 goal difference, 4th in the NWSL) had a delayed lead thanks to a goal on the rebound by Rocky Rodriguez. But with a disappointing draw with three games left and games against other Shield contenders to go, Portland found themselves in the middle of a dense playoff pack in the NWSL.

“I’m so angry. I’m incredibly pissed off,” said Thorns midfielder Sam Coffey. “We need to use all that emotion now and don’t turn it inward. … I’m caught in myself, girl, you gotta let it go.” Hmm.

Thornes dominated the scoring chances in the first half, beating the current 12-2 and maintaining 60% possession.

Portland’s offensive success began in the 6th minute with their deadliest weapon, the Sophia Smith. After slipping through the defense, Smith fired an open shot that was kick-saved by Kansas City keeper (and former Thorne) Adriana Franchi.

Christine Sinclair and Morgan Weaver had great chances in the 7th and 16th minutes respectively, while Yazmeen Ryan had a first-half chance in the 18th minute.

Kansas City’s best chance in the half was a header from Cece Kizer in the 21st minute. Otherwise, there were few goal chances for the home side as Portland cracked down.

In the 35th minute, Weaver hit another powerful shot, forcing another kick save from Franchi. In the 38th, Sam Coffey hit a long shot from outside the box, forcing Franchi to make a diving save.

As halftime ended, Franchi and Smith clashed in the box and both took time to get back on their feet. When she and Soanes called for goal, Smith seemed to be playing in pain for the rest of the way.

It was 0-0 at halftime as Smith and Thornes tried to get more than good chances in the second half.

Smith and Franchi merged again in the 49th minute, allowing Franchi to hang onto the ball and make the save.

A terrifying moment for Thornes came in the 59th minute, as Bixby forced a kick save and Claire Lavojes nearly headed the ball. However, Portland escaped unscathed, with Sinclair attempting a shot on the other side in the 61st minute but being saved by Franchi.

Frank did it again with Smith’s perilous run in the 65th minute, kick-saving what would undoubtedly be a tiebreaker.

Weaver had chances in the 70th and 78th minutes and the other Thornes also had shots on goal. However, Frank stagnated and proved nearly impossible to break down.

However, Rodriguez stepped up in the second half and fired a shot in the 87th minute that bounced off the far post. rice field.

Rodriguez said, “Obviously a frustrating match in terms of the end result. I thought we created a lot of chances, but we didn’t capitalize on a lot of them. Sometimes it’s the NWSL. Kansas (City). ) are a great team and will take advantage of every opportunity they have.

Portland held a 1–0 lead into stoppage time, but Kansas City didn’t give up.

Mace scored Current’s equalizer in the 94th minute and approached the final whistle to tie the game at 1-1. Portland left the field stunned and disappointed after losing an opportunity to regain the NWSL lead.

Thornes coach Rian Wilkinson said, “It’s pretty frustrating and a little emotional. “A goal after us and them came back to equalize in the final seconds. We totally dominated. A game that I thought, we created a good chance to win this game and in that sense we definitely have to take responsibility for that but right now we need to rest and recover and in the next few days We need to move forward again.”

next: Thornes will return home Wednesday for a quick turnaround match against Racing Louisville FC. Kickoff is scheduled for 7pm in Providence Park (streaming on Paramount+).

— Ryan Clarke, rclarke@oregonian.com, Twitter: @RyanTClarke

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