Reign FC suffered a 2-1 home loss in its season finale to Portland on Saturday.
Seattle, which had already been eliminated from postseason contention, finished its first year on a four-game losing streak and ultimately went 5-14-3 in the inaugural season of the NWSL. The Thorns (11-6-5) swept the Pacific Northwest series, winning all four games en route to the playoffs.
USWNT star Megan Rapinoe opened the scoring for the Reign in the third minute, her team-leading fifth goal despite joining the team halfway through the year. Canadian star Christine Sinclair equalized for the visitors five minutes later, however, and added the winner in the 84th minute in front of 3,855 fans at a sold-out Starfire Stadium. Alex Morgan was out with an MCL sprain.
Seattle started the season on an 0-9-2 stretch as goalkeeper Hope Solo was injured and Rapinoe was on loan with France’s Lyon. Things turned around once the team got to full strength, which resulted in a nice 5-1-1 run, but struggles returned to close the year.
Either way, you definitely saw a first-year franchise start to get some traction in the community throughout the season, which should lead to optimism — off the field and on — heading into Year 2.
In fact, season tickets for the 2014 season are already on sale, even while it’s uncertain if someone like Rapinoe will be coming back.
Full box score from Saturday after the jump…
* * *
THORNS FC 2, REIGN FC 1
SEA — Megan Rapinoe (un) 3′
POR — Christine Sinclair (Allie Long) 8′
POR — Christine Sinclair (Tiffany Weimer) 84′
SEA: 1-Solo Goalkeeper; 3-Barnes D; 4-Deines F; 6- Kyle M; 7-Reed D (25- Dallstream 87’); 9-Cox M (23-Cuéllar 78’); 10-Fishlock M; 11-Winters M; 19-Nairn M;15-Rapinoe F; 20-Van Egmond F (5-Bogus 63’)
Subs not used: 2- Zurrer ; M; 14-Larsen; 18-Betos Goalkeeper; 22- McDonald F
Head Coach: Laura Harvey
POR: 1- LeBlanc Goalkeeper; 2- Dougherty (15- Ramirez 50’); 5- Williamson (24-Ellertson 72’); 6-Shim; 7- Marshall; 8-Kerr; 9-Foxhoven (20-Wetzel 81’); 10-Long; 12-Sinclair F; 16- Buehler; 19-Weimer
Subs Not Used: 3-Guess; 4- O’Neil; 17-Heath; 23- Gay
Head Coach: Cindy Parlow Cone
SEA / POR
Shots: 18 / 12
Shots on Goal: 8 / 6
Saves: 4/ 7
Corner Kicks: 6 / 4
Fouls: 7 / 11
Offside: 3 / 0
Referee: Christina Unkel
Assistant Referee 1: Adrienne McDonald
Assistant Referee 2: Ronald Lagraff
Fourth Official: Farhad Dadkho
Weather: 76- Sunny