The North Carolina Courage and Seattle Reign sit atop the NWSL standings – in first and second place, respectively – after important wins this past weekend. Five U.S. WNT players who were on the roster for the most recent Mexico friendlies found the back of the net for their respective clubs over the four matches.
Utah Royals FC vs. Chicago Red Stars (1-0: Colaprico)
An overflow crowd of 19,203 fans came out to Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday afternoon to officially welcome the Utah Royals FC as it hosted its first NWSL home match in club history. Despite the incredible support from the crowd, Utah fell to Chicago 1-0 thanks to a well-struck volley from distance by Danielle Colaprico that spoiled the home opener in Sandy. A big storyline in the game was the return of forward Amy Rodriguez, who was sidelined last season after tearing her ACL in her first game of the 2017 season, which was her first game back following the birth of her second son that caused her to miss the 2016 season. Rodriguez went into the game in the 77th minute and created some danger in the attacking third.
Washington Spirit vs. North Carolina (2-4:
Pugh, Ordega;Zerboni (2), Williams, Dunn
A high-scoring game in Washington saw Mallory Pugh score in just the third minute after some nifty play at the top of the penalty box. The goal was Pugh’s second of the season. Fellow U.S. WNT teammate Crystal Dunn tied the match in the 20th minute for North Carolina. Dunn’s right-footed volley was her first NWSL goal since 2016. McCall Zerboni then scored two in a row to put the visitors up 3-1,and though Washington pulled one back in the second half via Francisca Ordega, it could not create an equalizer before Lynn Williams made it 4-2 in the final minutes of the game with a low shot from just outside the penalty area. It was Williams’ first goal of the season.
Sky Blue FC vs. Seattle Reign (1-0: Rapinoe)
In a match played in harsh weather conditions, the Seattle Reign won Sunday’s first game, 1-0 against Sky Blue FC in New Jersey as Megan Rapinoe scored her second goal in as many games. This time her goal came via a penalty kick that was awarded in the fifth minute after SBFC’s defender Erica Skroski was called for a handball in the box.
The visiting @ReignFC earned the road victory on Sunday night over @SkyBlueFC thanks to @mPinoe converting at the pk spot in the 6th minute. #NJvSEA #NWSL Week 3 highlights for you 👇 pic.twitter.com/bhIK0ExriF— NWSL (@NWSL) April 16, 2018
Portland Thorns FC vs. Orlando Pride (2-1: Horan, Sinclair; Ubogagu)
Portland Thorns FC made it six wins out of six in home openers, earning a 2-1 victory against the Orlando Pride on Sunday afternoon. Another terrific crowd showed up at Providence Park as 16,466 fans came out to support the reigning NWSL champs. Orlando jumped out to an early lead with a goal in the 20th minute from Chioma Ubogagu, but Portland responded with two goals in the next 18 minutes. Lindsey Horan hit a rocket from just atop the 18-yard box to tie the game in the 28th, and Christine Sinclair scored her NWSL-leading third goal of 2018 10 minutes later to seal the game for the home side.
Week 3 #NWSL action wraps up at Providence Park with a big home win for @ThornsFC led by goals from @Lindseyhoran11 and @sincy12 for the 2-1 result over @ORLPride.#PORvORL highlights ✅ pic.twitter.com/sNwt6314o5— NWSL (@NWSL) April 16, 2018
Goalkeeper Jane Campbell – 90 minutes (Houston Dash)
Defender Abby Dahlkemper – 90 minutes (NC Courage)
Forward Crystal Dunn – 90 minutes, GOAL, ASSIST (NC Courage)
Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris – 90 minutes (Orlando Pride)
Forward Ashley Hatch – 90 minutes (Washington Spirit)
Midfielder Lindsey Horan – 90 minutes, GOAL (Portland Thorns FC)
Defender Sofia Huerta – 90 minutes (Chicago Red Stars)
Defender Meghan Klingenberg – 90 minutes (Portland Thorns FC)
Midfielder Carli Lloyd – 90 minutes (Sky Blue FC)
Midfielder Allie Long – 90 minutes (Seattle Reign)
Forward Savannah McCaskill – 90 minutes (Sky Blue FC)
Forward Alex Morgan – 90 minutes (Orlando Pride)
Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher – 90 minutes (Chicago Red Stars)
Forward Mallory Pugh – 75 minutes, GOAL (Washington Spirit)
Forward Megan Rapinoe – 56 minutes, GOAL (Seattle Reign FC)
Forward Amy Rodriguez – 23 minutes (Utah Royals FC)
Defender Kelley O’Hara – 45 minutes (Utah Royals FC)
Defender Becky Sauerbrunn – 90 minutes (Utah Royals FC)
Defender Emily Sonnett – 90 minutes (Portland Thorns FC)
Midfielder Andi Sullivan – 90 minutes (Washington Spirit)
Defender Taylor Smith – 90 minutes (Washington Spirit)
Forward Lynn Williams – 90 minutes, GOAL (NC Courage)
Did Not Play
Midfielder Julie Ertz – Injury [knee] (Chicago Red Stars)
Midfielder Tobin Heath – Injury [ankle] (Portland Thorns)
Midfielder Rose Lavelle – Injury [hamstring] (Washington Spirit)
Midfielder Samantha Mewis – Injury [knee] (NC Courage)
Defender Casey Short – Injury [ankle] (Chicago Red Stars)