Michaela Hahn announces retirement

NewsAugust 16

Courage to host playoff game on Sunday, September 16

PlayoffsAugust 15

Watch: 3 Moments

HighlightsAugust 15

League Leaders

StatsAugust 15

Playoff Picture: Reign close to clinching a playoff spot

PlayoffsAugust 15

Goal of the Week: Hayley Raso

NWSL AwardsAugust 14

Player of the Week: Adrianna Franch

NWSL AwardsAugust 14

Save of the Week: Adrianna Franch

NWSL AwardsAugust 14

Week 20 Power Rankings: Playoff race heats up, Courage and Reign hold on to top spots

Power RankingsAugust 13

Week 20 Rewind

HighlightsAugust 13

Playoff Picture: Anything can happen

PlayoffsAugust 09

Outside the Box Scores: Courage chasing history

FeatureAugust 09

Janine Beckie joins Manchester City after transfer from Sky Blue FC

NewsAugust 09

Watch: 3 Moments

HighlightsAugust 08

Goal of the Week: Katie Stengel

NWSL AwardsAugust 07

Player of the Week: Lynn Williams

NWSL AwardsAugust 07

Save of the Week: Ashlyn Harris

NWSL AwardsAugust 07

Week 19 Power Rankings: Courage still No. 1, every other team changes spots

Power RankingsAugust 06

July Team of the Month

NWSL AwardsAugust 03

Rose Lavelle makes the most of her return to the USWNT starting XI

FeatureAugust 03

United States wins the Tournament of Nations

Tournament of NationsAugust 02

July Player of the Month: Lindsey Horan

NWSL AwardsAugust 01

Johnson, Henninger and Mexico win 2018 Central American and Caribbean Games

NewsJuly 31

O’Reilly, D’Angelo lead the Courage to inaugural ICC championship

FeatureJuly 30

Courage defeat Lyon to win inaugural ICC Women’s Tournament

HighlightsJuly 30

Marta, Horan goals highlight Day 2 of the Tournament of Nations

Tournament of NationsJuly 29

Courage vs. Lyon in the ICC final

FeatureJuly 28

Courage advance to final of inaugural ICC Women’s Tournament

FeatureJuly 27

Australia, United States win on Day 1 of the Tournament of Nations

Tournament of NationsJuly 26

NWSL joins SheIS leadership group

NewsJuly 26

Player of the Week: Jane Campbell

NWSL AwardsJuly 24

Goal of the Week: Toni Pressley

NWSL AwardsJuly 24

Save of the Week: Rachel Corsie

NWSL AwardsJuly 24

Shortlist announced for 2018’s The Best FIFA Women’s Player, Coach awards

NewsJuly 24

Seven NWSL players on Brazil’s Tournament of Nations roster

Tournament of NationsJuly 23

Week 17 Power Rankings: Courage hold on, Thorns and Reign swap spots

Power RankingsJuly 23

New test ahead as Courage gear up for the first ICC Women’s Tournament

FeatureJuly 20

MVP Watch

FeatureJuly 19

League Leaders

StatsJuly 19

Twenty-four NWSL players on USWNT training camp roster ahead of Tournament of Nations

Tournament of NationsJuly 18

Japan, Australia name rosters for 2018 Tournament of Nations

Tournament of NationsJuly 17

Player of the Week: Lynn Williams

NWSL AwardsJuly 17

Week 16 Power Rankings: Courage, Reign, Thorns take top three spots

Power RankingsJuly 16

Arin Gilliland injury update

NewsJuly 15

Player of the Week: Sam Kerr

NWSL AwardsJuly 10

Save of the Week: Adrianna Franch

NWSL AwardsJuly 10

Diana Matheson suspended one game

NewsJuly 10

Week 15 Power Rankings: Courage and Reign stay in the top spots

Power RankingsJuly 09

June Team of the Month

NWSL AwardsJuly 06

June Player of the Month: Crystal Dunn

NWSL AwardsJuly 05

Michaela Hahn announces retirement

Hahn was acquired by the Dash this offseason

Michaela Hahn has one goal and one assist in her NWSL career. (Photo credit: Craig Mitchelldyer/isiphotos.com)

Houston Dash midfielder Michaela Hahn announced her retirement on Thursday.

In a news release, the Dash said she will return to her alma mater, Florida State University, to pursue a master’s degree in sports management. She will also assist the Seminoles women’s soccer team this fall.

Hahn joined the Dash this offseason as a discovery player, but did not appear in a match. She spent the 2016 season with the Western New York Flash after being selected No. 9 overall in that year’s NWSL College Draft. She has one goal and one assist in 12 career NWSL games.

Courage to host playoff game on Sunday, September 16

Tickets go on sale August 16 at 10 a.m. ET

The North Carolina Courage are 15-1-5 through the first 21 games of the 2018 NWSL season. (Photo credit: Andy Mead/isiphotos.com)

So far, the North Carolina Courage are the only team to have punched their ticket to the 2018 NWSL Playoffs — and, as the NWSL Shield winners, they are the No. 1 seed and will host a playoff game.

Now we know the date and time of that playoff game: Sunday, September 16, at 3 p.m. ET at Sahlen’s Stadium at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina. The Courage also announced that tickets will go on sale on Thursday, August 16, at 10 a.m. ET.

The game will be the second playoff game of the playoff weekend, which runs Sept. 14-16 — with the first playoff game date and time still to be determined. The additional three playoff teams are also still to be determined.

The 2018 NWSL Championship will take place on Saturday, September 22, at 4:30 p.m. ET on Lifetime. Tickets are on sale now.

Additionally, it was announced this week that the Courage will receive their 2018 NWSL Shield (also their second straight NWSL Shield) from NWSL managing director Amanda Duffy in a postgame ceremony after their match on Saturday, August 18, vs. the Orlando Pride.

The game on September 16 will be the second-ever, and second straight home playoff game for the North Carolina Courage, who are in their second year in the NWSL after the franchise relocated from Western New York ahead of last season.

Watch: 3 Moments

Press, Naeher and Comeau

Three key moments from Week 20 in the NWSL:

  1. Utah Royals FC Christen Press escaping pressure
  2. Chicago Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher‘s punch into the path of Sam Kerr
  3. Houston Dash defender Taylor Comeau‘s clearance and block at the end of the game

 

 

 

 

League Leaders

NWSL league leaders in a number of statistical categories, as of August 14, 2018

NWSL league leaders in a number of statistical categories, as of August 14, 2018.

All stats are courtesy of Opta, and there is a key to the terms at the bottom of this story. 

Games Played

1. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 21
1. Erceg, Abby | NC | 21
1. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 21
4. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 20
4. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 20
4. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 20
4. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 20
4. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 20
4. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 20
4. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 20
4. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 20
4. Hamilton, Kristen | NC | 20
4. Stengel, Katie | UTA | 20
4. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 20
4. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 20
4. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 20
17. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 19
17. Moros, Becca | UTA | 19
17. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 19
17. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 19
17. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 19
17. Comeau, Taylor | HOU/CHI | 19
17. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 19
17. Dougherty Howard, Meggie | WAS | 19
17. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 19
17. Matheson, Diana | UTA | 19
17. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 19
17. Harris, Ashlyn | ORL | 19
17. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 19
30. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 18
30. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 18
30. Church, Whitney | WAS | 18
30. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 18
30. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 18
30. Long, Allie | SEA | 18
30. Freeman, Mandy | NJ | 18
30. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 18
30. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 18
30. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 18
30. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 18
30. Debinha | NC | 18
30. Williams, Lynn | NC | 18
30. Ubogagu, Chioma | ORL | 18
30. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 18
30. Hill, Rachel | ORL | 18
30. Spencer, Jasmyne | SEA | 18
30. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 18
30. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 18


Minutes Played

1. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 1890
1. Erceg, Abby | NC | 1890
3. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 1818
4. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 1800
4. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 1800
4. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 1800
4. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 1800
4. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 1800
9. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 1794
10. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 1728
11. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 1714
12. Harris, Ashlyn | ORL | 1710
13. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 1691
14. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 1684
15. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 1657
16. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 1655
17. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 1652
18. Comeau, Taylor | HOU/CHI | 1645
19. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 1620
19. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 1620
19. Long, Allie | SEA | 1620
19. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 1620
19. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 1620
19. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 1620
25. Moros, Becca | UTA | 1619
26. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 1609
27. Church, Whitney | WAS | 1600
28. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 1599
29. Freeman, Mandy | NJ | 1595
30. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 1591


Goals

1. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 11
2. Williams, Lynn | NC | 10
2. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 10
4. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 9
5. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 7
5. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 7
5. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 7
5. Debinha | NC | 7
5. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 7
10. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 6
10. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 6
12. Crnogorčević, Ana-Maria | POR | 5
12. Stengel, Katie | UTA | 5
12. Huerta, Sofia | HOU | 5
15. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 4
15. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 4
15. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 4
15. Ubogagu, Chioma | ORL | 4
15. Marta | ORL | 4
15. Ohai, Kealia | HOU | 4
15. Hill, Rachel | ORL | 4
22. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 3
22. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 3
22. Long, Allie | SEA | 3
22. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 3
22. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 3
22. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 3
22. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 3
22. Heath, Tobin | POR | 3
22. Mewis, Samantha | NC | 3
22. Dorsey, Imani | NJ | 3
22. Latsko, Veronica | HOU | 3


Assists

1. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 6
1. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 6
3. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 5
3. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 5
3. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 5
3. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 5
3. Heath, Tobin | POR | 5
8. Williams, Lynn | NC | 4
8. Hamilton, Kristen | NC | 4
8. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 4
8. Nairn, Christine | ORL | 4
8. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 4
13. Crnogorčević, Ana-Maria | POR | 3
13. Marta | ORL | 3
13. Ohai, Kealia | HOU | 3
13. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 3
13. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 3
13. Kgatlana, Thembi | HOU | 3
13. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 3
13. Catley, Stephanie | SEA | 3
13. Kawasumi, Nahomi | SEA | 3
22. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 2
22. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 2
22. Debinha | NC | 2
22. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 2
22. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 2
22. Mewis, Samantha | NC | 2
22. Groom, Shea | NJ | 2
22. Johnson, Katie | NJ | 2
22. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 2
22. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 2
22. Prince, Nichelle | HOU | 2
22. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 2
22. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 2
22. Klingenberg, Meghan | POR | 2
22. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 2


Total Shots (including blocked shots)

1. Williams, Lynn | NC | 98
2. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 83
3. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 74
4. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 69
5. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 68
5. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 68
7. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 54
7. Debinha | NC | 54
9. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 53
10. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 50
11. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 48
12. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 47
13. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 43
14. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 40
14. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 40
16. Marta | ORL | 39
17. Crnogorčević, Ana-Maria | POR | 34
18. Rodriguez, Amy | UTA | 32
19. Mewis, Samantha | NC | 31
20. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 30
21. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 29
22. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 28
23. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 28
24. Heath, Tobin | POR | 27
24. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 27
24. Press, Christen | UTA | 27
24. Fishlock, Jessica | SEA | 27
28. Ubogagu, Chioma | ORL | 26
28. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 26


Shots on Target

1. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 35
2. Williams, Lynn | NC | 33
2. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 33
4. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 30
5. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 26
6. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 25
7. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 22
7. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 22
9. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 21
9. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 21
9. Debinha | NC | 21
12. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 19
13. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 18
14. Marta | ORL | 17
15. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 16
15. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 16
17. Crnogorčević, Ana-Maria | POR | 15
18. Dorsey, Imani | NJ | 14
19. Stengel, Katie | UTA | 13
20. Groom, Shea | NJ | 12
21. Rodriguez, Amy | UTA | 11
21. Mewis, Samantha | NC | 11
21. Heath, Tobin | POR | 11
21. Press, Christen | UTA | 11
25. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 10
25. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 10
25. Fishlock, Jessica | SEA | 10
25. Hamilton, Kristen | NC | 10
25. Hill, Rachel | ORL | 10
30. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 9
30. Gorry, Katrina | UTA | 9
30. Banini, Estefanía | WAS | 9
30. Johnson, Katie | NJ | 9
30. Latsko, Veronica | HOU | 9


Total Touches

1. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 1486
2. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 1473
3. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 1331
4. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 1326
5. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 1323
6. Moros, Becca | UTA | 1321
7. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 1307
8. Long, Allie | SEA | 1303
9. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 1195
10. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 1188
11. Erceg, Abby | NC | 1171
12. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 1163
13. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 1162
14. Klingenberg, Meghan | POR | 1153
15. Comeau, Taylor | HOU/CHI | 1142
16. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 1134
17. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 1114
18. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 1113
19. Barnes, Lauren | SEA | 1075
20. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 1060
21. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 1059
22. Nielsen, Theresa | SEA | 1056
23. Sauerbrunn, Becky | UTA | 1053
24. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 1051
25. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 1048
26. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 1044
27. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 1026
28. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 1025
29. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 1014
30. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 1007


Chances Created

1. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 42
1. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 42
3. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 40
4. Debinha | NC | 39
5. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 38
6. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 35
7. Marta | ORL | 34
8. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 32
9. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 31
9. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 31
11. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 29
12. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 28
12. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 28
14. Klingenberg, Meghan | POR | 26
15. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 25
15. Williams, Lynn | NC | 25
17. Dahlkemper, Abby | NC | 24
18. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 23
19. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 22
19. Gorry, Katrina | UTA | 22
19. Fishlock, Jessica | SEA | 22
19. Nairn, Christine | ORL | 22
23. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 21
23. Crnogorčević, Ana-Maria | POR | 21
23. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 21
26. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 20
26. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 20
26. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 20
26. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 20
26. Ubogagu, Chioma | ORL | 20
26. Heath, Tobin | POR | 20


Clearances

1. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 114
2. Erceg, Abby | NC | 95
3. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 91
4. van Wyk, Janine | HOU | 88
5. Sonnett, Emily | POR | 85
6. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 82
7. Reynolds, Katherine | POR | 80
8. Sauerbrunn, Becky | UTA | 79
9. Church, Whitney | WAS | 76
9. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 76
11. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 74
12. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 66
13. Barnes, Lauren | SEA | 65
14. Johnson, Samantha | UTA/CHI | 63
14. Menges, Emily | POR | 63
16. Freeman, Mandy | NJ | 59
17. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 56
18. Dahlkemper, Abby | NC | 53
18. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 53
18. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 53
21. Comeau | HOU/CHI | 51
22. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 50
22. Hubly, Kelli | POR | 50
24. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 48
24. Chapman, Allysha | HOU | 48
26. Richardson, Dominique | NJ | 47
27. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 46
28. Klingenberg, Meghan | POR | 45
28. Skroski, Erica | NJ | 45
30. Long, Allie | SEA | 43
30. McNabb, Kristen | SEA | 43


Interceptions

1. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 72
2. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 64
3. Nielsen, Theresa | SEA | 52
4. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 50
4. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 50
6. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 49
7. Erceg, Abby | NC | 47
8. Moros, Becca | UTA | 46
8. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 46
10. Sauerbrunn, Becky | UTA | 45
10. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 45
12. van Wyk, Janine | HOU | 44
12. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 44
14. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 42
14. Pickett, Carson | ORL | 42
16. Church, Whitney | WAS | 41
16. Bowen, Katie | UTA | 41
18. Reynolds, Katherine | POR | 40
18. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 40
18. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 40
18. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 40
22. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 39
22. Long, Allie | SEA | 39
22. Boureille, Celeste | POR | 39
25. Poliana | ORL | 37
26. Freeman, Mandy | NJ | 36
26. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 36
28. Barnes, Lauren | SEA | 35
29. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 32
29. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 32


Blocks

1. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 27
2. van Wyk, Janine | HOU | 24
3. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 18
4. Mônica | ORL | 17
5. Erceg, Abby | NC | 15
5. Church, Whitney | WAS | 15
7. Sauerbrunn, Becky | UTA | 14
8. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 12
8. Freeman, Mandy | NJ | 12
8. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 12
8. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 12
12. Barnes, Lauren | SEA | 11
12. Sonnett, Emily | POR | 11
14. Reynolds, Katherine | POR | 10
14. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 10
14. Long, Allie | SEA | 10
14. Skroski, Erica | NJ | 10
18. Johnson, Samantha | UTA/CHI | 9
18. Gibbons, Christina | NJ | 9
20. Pickett, Carson | ORL | 8
20. McNabb, Kristen | SEA | 8
20. Dahlkemper, Abby | NC | 8
20. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 8
24. Ertz, Julie | CHI | 7
24. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 7
26. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 6
26. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 6
26. Boureille, Celeste | POR | 6
26. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 6
26. Stanton, Nikki | CHI | 6
26. Menges, Emily | POR | 6
26. Johnson, Samantha | CHI | 6
26. Quinn, Rebecca | WAS | 6
26. Hubly, Kelli | POR | 6
26. Polkinghorne, Clare | HOU | 6
26. Motlhalo, Linda | HOU | 6


Recoveries

1. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 248
2. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 231
3. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 211
4. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 200
5. Smith, Abby | UTA | 199
6. Long, Allie | SEA | 188
6. Sheridan, Kailen | NJ | 188
8. Harris, Ashlyn | ORL | 187
9. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 182
10. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 180
11. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 171
12. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 168
13. Rowland, Katelyn | NC | 164
14. Erceg, Abby | NC | 163
15. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 153
16. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 152
17. Comeau, Taylor | HOU/CHI | 146
18. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 145
19. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 139
20. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 138
21. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 134
22. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 133
23. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 129
24. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 127
25. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 125
26. Skroski, Erica | NJ | 122
26. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 122
26. Motlhalo, Linda | HOU | 122
29. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 120
30. Williams, Lydia | SEA | 119


Tackles Won

1. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 58
2. Moros, Becca | UTA | 54
3. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 40
4. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 39
4. Utsugi, Rumi | SEA | 39
6. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 38
7. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 37
7. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 37
7. Nielsen, Theresa | SEA | 37
10. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 36
11. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 35
11. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 35
13. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 34
13. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 34
13. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 34
16. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 33
17. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 31
18. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 30
19. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 29
20. Tiernan, Madison | NJ | 28
21. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 27
21. Motlhalo, Linda | HOU | 27
21. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 27
21. Nikki Stanton | CHI | 27
21. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 27
21. Hanson, Haley | HOU | 27
27. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 26
27. Mewis, Kristie | HOU | 26
27. Gibbons, Christina | NJ | 26
30. Debinha | NC | 25
30. Purce, Midge | POR | 25


Duels Won

1. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 244
2. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 190
3. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 184
4. Long, Allie | SEA | 154
5. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 139
6. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 134
7. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 127
7. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 127
9. Moros, Becca | UTA | 120
10. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 115
11. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 110
11. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 110
13. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 108
14. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 107
14. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 107
15. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 105
16. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 103
17. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 102
17. Erceg, Abby | NC | 102
19. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 101
19. Williams, Lynn | NC | 101
21. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 100
22. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 99
22. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 99
24. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 98
24. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 98
26. Comeau, Taylor | HOU/CHI | 97
27. Mewis, Kristie | HOU | 96
28. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 94
29. Debinha | NC | 93
29. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 93


Aerial Duels Won

1. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 115
2. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 90
3. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 82
4. Long, Allie | SEA | 77
5. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 72
6. Erceg, Abby | NC | 71
7. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 66
8. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 63
9. Mewis, Samantha | NC | 53
10. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 49
11. Williams, Lynn | NC | 48
12. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 47
13. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 45
13. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 45
15. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 44
15. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 44
17. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 43
18. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 40
18. van Egmond, Emily | ORL | 40
20. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 37
21. Huster, Tori | WAS | 36
22. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 35
22. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 35
22. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 35
25. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 34
26. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 33
26. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 33
28. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 32
28. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 32
28. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 32


Tackles

1. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 86
2. Moros, Becca | UTA | 68
3. Nielsen, Theresa | SEA | 59
4. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 57
5. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 56
6. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 54
7. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 51
7. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 51
9. Utsugi, Rumi | SEA | 50
10. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 49
11. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 48
12. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 47
12. Stanton, Nikki | CHI | 47
14. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 45
14. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 45
16. Mewis, Kristie | HOU | 44
17. Motlhalo, Linda | HOU | 43
17. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 43
19. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 42
19. Tiernan, Madison | NJ | 42
19. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 42
22. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 41
22. Purce, Midge | POR | 41
24. Long, Allie | SEA | 40
25. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 38
26. Klingenberg, Meghan | POR | 37
26. van Wyk, Janine | HOU | 37
26. Gorry, Katrina | UTA | 37
29. Hanson, Haley | HOU | 36
29. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 36


Duels

1. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 407
2. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 329
3. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 327
4. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 286
5. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 285
6. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 264
7. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 261
7. Long, Allie | SEA | 261
9. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 246
10. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 243
11. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 230
12. Huerta, Sofia | HOU | 229
13. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 221
14. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 220
15. Debinha | NC | 218
16. Williams, Lynn | NC | 213
17. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 213
18. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 211
19. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 209
20. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 207
21. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 195
22. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 191
23. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 187
23. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 187
23. Stanton, Nikki | CHI | 187
26. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 186
26. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 186
28. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 180
29. Moros, Rebecca | UTA | 179
30. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 178


Aerial Duels

1. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 161
2. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 159
3. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 157
4. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 134
5. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 119
5. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 119
7. Long, Allie | SEA | 116
8. Erceg, Abby | NC | 106
9. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 98
9. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 98
11. Williams, Lynn | NC | 91
12. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 88
12. Yanez, Beverly | SEA | 88
14. Huster, Tori | WAS | 81
15. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 80
15. Mewis, Samantha | NC | 80
17. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 79
18. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 78
19. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 74
19. Stengel, Katie | UTA | 74
21. Leroux, Sydney | ORL | 73
22. van Egmond, Emily | ORL | 70
23. Huerta, Sofia | HOU/CHI | 69
23. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 69
23. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 69
26. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 66
26. Crnogorčević, Ana-Maria | POR | 66
26. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 66
29. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 61
29. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 61


Successful Crosses/Corners

1. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 42
2. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 38
3. Dahlkemper, Abby | NC | 30
4. Klingenberg, Meghan | POR | 29
5. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 25
6. Marta | ORL | 23
7. Heath, Tobin | POR | 20
8. Huerta, Sofia | HOU | 19
8. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 19
8. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 19
11. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 16
12. Debinha | NC | 15
12. Nairn, Christine | ORL | 15
14. McDonald, Jessica | NC | 14
14. Nielsen, Theresa | SEA | 14
16. Church, Whitney | WAS | 13
16. Catley, Stephanie | SEA | 13
18. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 11
18. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 11
18. Gorry, Katrina | UTA | 11
18. Kawasumi, Nahomi | SEA | 11
22. Williams, Lynn | NC | 9
22. Mewis, Kristie | HOU | 9
24. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 8
24. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 8
24. Pickett, Carson | ORL | 8
24. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 8
24. Purce, Midge | POR | 8
24. Hill, Rachel | ORL | 8
30. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 7
30. Kerr, Sam | CHI | 7
30. Prince, Nichelle | HOU | 7
30. Comeau, Taylor | HOU/CHI | 7
30. Pugh, Mallory | WAS | 7


Passing Accuracy (min. 400 pass attempts)

1. Sauerbrunn, Becky | UTA | 85.07% | 837 passes
2. Long, Allie | SEA | 84.06% | 1010
3. Andressinha | POR | 83.95% | 430
4. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 82.79% | 1104
5. Menges, Emily | POR | 82.2% | 472
6. Mônica | ORL | 82.02% | 595
7. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 81.86% | 816
8. Skroski, Erica | NJ | 81.74% | 575
9. Marta | ORL | 81.47% | 448
10. Erceg, Abby | NC | 81.28% | 919
11. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 80.65% | 858
12. Johnson, Samantha | UTA | 78.96% | 656
13. Dahlkemper, Abby | NC | 78.62% | 725
14. McNabb, Kristen | SEA | 78.23% | 496
15. Motlhalo, Linda | HOU | 78.21% | 537
16. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 78.06% | 661
17. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 77.91% | 697
18. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 77.87% | 845
19. Sonnett, Emily | POR | 77.81% | 703
20. van Wyk, Janine | HOU | 77.11% | 533
21. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 76.98% | 695
22. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 76.7% | 618
23. Dougherty Howard, Meggie | WAS | 76.34% | 524
24. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 76.24% | 829
25. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 75.99% | 733
26. Banini, Estefanía | WAS | 75.95% | 449
27. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 75.93% | 835
28. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 75.75% | 837
29. LaBonta, Lo’eau | UTA | 75.73% | 412
30. Catley, Stephanie | SEA | 75.6% | 496


Total Passes

1. Corsie, Rachel | UTA | 1104
2. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 1032
3. Long, Allie | SEA | 1010
4. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 933
5. Erceg, Abby | NC | 919
6. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 907
7. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 887
8. Barnes, Lauren | SEA | 868
9. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 858
10. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 845
11. Sauerbrunn, Becky | UTA | 837
11. Zadorsky, Shelina | ORL | 837
13. Oyster, Megan | SEA | 835
14. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 829
15. Scott, Desiree | UTA | 816
16. Moros, Rebecca | UTA | 806
17. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 760
18. Naughton, Katie | CHI | 738
19. Krieger, Ali | ORL | 733
19. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 733
21. Hinkle, Jaelene | NC | 729
22. Dahlkemper, Abby | NC | 725
23. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 712
24. Church, Whitney | WAS | 711
25. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 710
26. Sonnett, Emily | POR | 703
27. Johnson, Estelle | WAS | 697
28. Brooks, Amber | HOU | 695
29. Gorry, Katrina | UTA | 672
30. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 661
30. Gilliland, Arin | CHI | 661


Saves

1. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 93
2. Sheridan, Kailen | NJ | 75
3. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 72
4. Harris, Ashlyn | ORL | 61
5. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 53
6. Betos, Michelle | SEA | 40
7. Eckerstrom, Britt | POR | 37
7. Rowland, Katelyn | NC | 37
9. Williams, Lydia | SEA | 35
10. Franch, Adrianna | POR | 33
11. Smith, Abby | UTA | 31
12. Kopmeyer, Haley | ORL | 11
12. Barnhart, Nicole | UTA | 11
14. D’Angelo, Sabrina | NC | 7
15. Boyd, Emily | CHI | 4
15. Haracic, DiDi | WAS | 4
17. Wys, Kelsey | WAS | 2
18. Casey, Caroline | NJ | 1


Clean Sheets

1. Williams, Lydia | SEA | 8
2. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 6
2. Smith, Abby | UTA | 6
4. Rowland, Katelyn | NC | 5
5. D’Angelo, Sabrina | NC | 4
5. Harris, Ashlyn | ORL | 4
5. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 4
8. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 2
8. Eckerstrom, Britt | POR | 2
8. Barnhart, Nicole | UTA | 2
8. Franch, Adrianna | POR | 2
8. Betos, Michelle | SEA | 2
13. Boyd, Emily | CHI | 1
13. Sheridan, Kailen | NJ | 1
13. Kopmeyer, Haley | ORL | 1


Catches

1. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 14
2. Smith, Abby | UTA | 13
2. Rowland, Katelyn | NC | 13
4. Franch, Adrianna | POR | 11
5. Harris, Ashlyn | ORL | 9
5. Betos, Michelle | SEA | 9
7. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 6
8. Naeher, Alyssa | CHI | 4
8. Sheridan, Kailen | NJ | 4
8. Barnhart, Nicole | UTA | 4
11. Williams, Lydia | SEA | 3
11. Eckerstrom, Britt | POR | 3
13. D’Angelo, Sabrina | NC | 2
14. Haracic, DiDi | WAS | 1


Penalty Kick Saves

1. Sheridan, Kailen | NJ | 3 saved | 5 faced
2. Bledsoe, Aubrey | WAS | 2| 3
2. Campbell, Jane | HOU | 2 | 5
4. Eckerstrom, Britt | POR | 1 | 3
4. Rowland, Katelyn | NC | 1 | 2
4. Williams, Lydia | SEA | 1 | 1


Fouls Conceded

1. Stanton, Nikki | CHI | 37
2. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 36
3. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 33
4. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 31
4. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 31
6. Long, Allie | SEA | 29
7. Colaprico, Danielle | CHI | 28
7. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 28
9. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 23
10. O’Sullivan, Denise | NC | 22
10. Weatherholt, Dani | ORL | 22
12. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 21
12. Rapinoe, Megan | SEA | 21
12. Marta | ORL | 21
12. Ubogagu, Chioma | ORL | 21
12. Tiernan, Madison | NJ | 21
17. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 20
17. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 20
17. Groom, Shea | NJ | 20
20. Johnson, Samantha | UTA | 19
20. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 19
20. Fishlock, Jessica | SEA | 19
20. Taylor, Jodie | SEA | 19
24. Killion, Sarah | NJ | 18
24. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 18
24. Hamilton, Kristen | NC | 18
27. Boureille, Celeste | POR | 17
27. van Egmond, Emily | ORL | 17
27. Nielsen, Theresa | SEA | 17
27. Pugh, Mallory | WAS | 17


Fouls Won

1. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 58
2. Zerboni, McCall | NC | 36
3. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 34
4. Comeau, Taylor | HOU | 32
5. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 29
6. Long, Allie | SEA | 28
6. Andressinha | POR | 28
8. Dougherty Howard, Meggie | WAS | 27
9. McCaskill, Savannah | NJ | 25
10. Fishlock, Jessica | SEA | 24
11. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 23
11. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 23
11. Mathias, Merritt | NC | 23
11. Kennedy, Alanna | ORL | 23
11. Huerta, Sofia | HOU | 23
16. Hatch, Ashley | WAS | 22
16. Sullivan, Andi | WAS | 22
18. Motlhalo, Linda | HOU | 21
18. Banini, Estefanía | WAS | 21
20. Dydasco, Caprice | WAS | 20
20. Dunn, Crystal | NC | 20
22. Groom, Shea | NJ | 18
22. Morgan, Alex | ORL | 18
22. Debinha | NC | 18
22. Mewis, Kristie | HOU | 18
26. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 17
26. Heath, Tobin | POR | 17
26. Addo, Elizabeth | SEA | 17
26. Gorry, Katrina | UTA | 17
26. Smith, Taylor | WAS | 17


Yellow Cards

1. Horan, Lindsey | POR | 5
1. Johnson, Samantha | UTA | 5
3. Jónsdóttir, Gunnhildur | UTA | 4
3. Daly, Rachel | HOU | 4
3. Nagasato, Yuki | CHI | 4
3. Sinclair, Christine | POR | 4
3. Hamilton, Kristen | NC | 4
8. Dougherty Howard, Meggie | WAS | 3
8. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 3
8. Ordega, Francisca | WAS | 3
8. Nikki Stanton | CHI | 3
8. Mautz, Alyssa | CHI | 3
8. Sonnett, Emily | POR | 3
31 players with 2 yellow cards


Red Cards

1. Marta | ORL | 1
1. Lloyd, Carli | NJ | 1


Opta Event Definitions

From Opta’s site:

Chances Created

Assists plus key passes (final pass or pass/shot leading to the recipient of the ball having an attempt at goal without scoring.)

Tackles

A tackle is defined as where a player connects with the ball in ground challenge where she successfully takes the ball away from the woman in possession. 

  • The tackled player must clearly be in possession of the ball before the tackle is made

A Tackle Won is deemed to be where the tackler or one of her team-mates regains possession as a result of the challenge, or that the ball goes out of play and is “safe.”

A Tackle Lost is where a tackle is made but the ball goes to an opposition player.

Clearance

This is a defensive action where a player kicks the ball away from his own goal with no intended recipient of the ball.

Block

This is where a player blocks a shot from an opposing player.

Interception

This is where a player intentionally intercepts a pass by moving into the line of the intended ball.

Recovery

This is where a player wins back the ball when it has gone loose or where the ball has been played directly to her.

Foul conceded

A foul conceded is defined as any infringement that is penalized as foul play by a referee. Offsides are not given as a foul conceded.

Foul won

A foul won is defined as where a player wins a free-kick or penalty for their team after being fouled by an opposing player.

Touches

A sum of all events where a player touches the ball, so excludes things like Aerial challenge lost or Challenge lost. 

Duels

A duel is an 50-50 contest between two players of opposing sides in the match, including aerial duels. For every Duel Won there is a corresponding Duel Lost depending on the outcome of the Duel.

Aerial Duel won – Aerial Duel lost

This is where two players challenge in the air against each other. The player that wins the ball is deemed to have won the duel. When more than two players are involved the player closest to the duel winner is given an Aerial Duel lost.

Playoff Picture: Reign close to clinching a playoff spot

The Reign can become the second team to clinch a playoff spot

Seattle Reign FC will host the Chicago Red Stars in a critical Week 21 game. (Photo credit: Daniel Bartel/isiphotos.com)

Correction: An earlier version of this story said the Reign needed a win AND a Pride loss or draw. The Reign need only a win vs. the Red Stars to clinch as they will have 39 points. If The Reign get to 39 points, only two other teams can get to at least 39 points: the Thorns and either the Red Stars or Pride (the Red Stars and Pride meet on August 25, which prevents them both from getting to at least 39 points). Additionally, this was updated on August 17th to adjust the scenarios in which the Reign can clinch a playoff spot at 37 points, following their draw vs. Red Stars.

With just 18 games left in the regular season, only one playoff spot is booked and the remaining three are still to be determined. But that can change this week as Seattle Reign FC have a chance to clinch a spot in the playoffs.

 

The Reign have the ability to clinch a spot in the playoffs by the end of Week 21 with:

Reign win vs. Red Stars

OR

Reign draw vs. Red Stars AND Dash draw or loss vs. Spirit AND Pride loss vs. Courage AND Utah loss or draw to Sky Blue FC

There are a number of multi-team tiebreak situations still possible unless the Dash, Pride and Utah Royals FC all drop to under 37 max points.

No other team can clinch a spot in Week 21, nor can a team can be eliminated this week.

 

Meanwhile, the North Carolina Courage’s pursuit of several regular records continues. (Read More: Courage quest for history) They are currently 15-1-5 with 50 points. With three games remaining, they need:

— 5 points to break the record for points in a season (54 points, set by Seattle Reign FC in 2014)

— 2 wins to break the record for wins in a season (16, set by the 2014 Seattle Reign FC/2017 North Carolina Courage in NWSL, as well as the 2010 FC Gold Pride of WPS)

— 7 goals to break the record for goals scored in one season (50, set by the 2014 Reign)

— 7 points to hold the highest points per game average (2.33 set by the 2011 Western New York Flash of WPS; The NWSL record is 2.25, set by the 2014 Reign)

As we head into Week 21, here’s a look at where each team sits in the NWSL standings and their remaining schedule:

 

1. NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE

15-1-5, 50 pts

Goal Differential: +28

Games Remaining: 3

Max Points Possible: 59

Clinched the NWSL Shield

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 18: vs. Orlando Pride
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Sept. 8: vs. Houston Dash

 


2. SEATTLE REIGN FC

10-4-6, 36 pts

Goal Differential: +8

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 48

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Wed., Aug. 15: vs. Chicago Red Stars
  • Tue., Aug. 21: vs. Houston Dash
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. North Carolina Courage
  • Fri., Sept. 7: at Portland Thorns FC

 


3. PORTLAND THORNS FC

9-6-5, 32 pts

Goal Differential: +8

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 44

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 18: vs. Chicago Red Stars
  • Wed., Aug. 22: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Washington Spirit
  • Fri., Sept. 7: vs. Seattle Reign FC

 


4. ORLANDO PRIDE

8-7-6, 30 pts

Goal Differential: -1

Games Remaining: 3

Max Points Possible: 39

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 18: at North Carolina Courage
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. Chicago Red Stars
  • Sat., Sept. 8: at Sky Blue FC

 


5. CHICAGO RED STARS

7-4-8, 29 pts

Goal Differential: +4

Games Remaining: 5

Max Points Possible: 44

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Wed., Aug. 15: at Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Aug. 18: at Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Orlando Pride
  • Tue., Sept. 4: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sept. 8: at Utah Royals FC

 


6. UTAH ROYALS FC

7-7-7, 28 pts

Goal Differential: -3

Games Remaining: 3

Max Points Possible: 37

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 18: at Sky Blue FC
  • Wed., Aug. 22: at Washington Spirit
  • Sat., Sept. 8: vs. Chicago Red Stars

 


7. HOUSTON DASH

7-8-5, 26 pts

Goal Differential: -6

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 38

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Fri., Aug. 17: vs. Washington Spirit
  • Tue., Aug. 21: at Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sept. 8: at North Carolina Courage

 


8. WASHINGTON SPIRIT

2-14-4, 10 pts

Goal Differential: -17

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 22

Eliminated from playoff contention

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Fri., Aug. 17: at Houston Dash
  • Wed., Aug. 22: vs. Utah Royals FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Sept. 1: vs. Sky Blue FC

 


9. SKY BLUE FC

0-14-4, 4 pts

Goal Differential: -21

Games Remaining: 6

Max Points Possible: 22

Eliminated from playoff contention

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 18: vs. Utah Royals FC
  • Wed., Aug. 22: at Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Houston Dash
  • Sat., Sept. 1: at Washington Spirit
  • Tue. Sept. 4: at Chicago Red Stars
  • Sat., Sept. 8: vs. Orlando Pride

 


Tiebreaker Procedures

To Break a Tie in the Standings

If two or more teams are tied on points at the end of the regular season, the tie will be broken through the following steps:

Two teams

1.Head-to-head record
2.Overall goal difference
3.Overall goals scored
4.Head-to-head road record
5.Goal difference in all road games
6.Goals scored in all road games
7.Head-to-head home record
8.Goal difference in all home games
9.Goals scored in all home games
10.Coin toss

Three teams

1.Points per game against other two teams

2.Overall goal difference

3. See tiebreaker procedure for two-team scenarios

NOTE: If two teams are still tied after the third team has advanced via the tiebreaker, the tie will be broken using the two-team tiebreaker rules.

Goal of the Week: Hayley Raso

Raso has two goals this season

Hayley Raso's goal secured the Thorns a 2-0 win over the Pride in Week 20. Photo credit: Jeremy Reper/isiphotos.com)

Portland Thorns FC forward Hayley Raso‘s far post shot past Orlando Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris in the 53rd minute has been voted NWSL Week 20’s Goal of the Week.

Watch the Week 20 Goal of the Week below and catch up on all of this year’s Goals of the Week on the YouTube playlist.

 

 

Player of the Week: Adrianna Franch

The Thorns goalkeeper earned a clean sheet in Week 20

Franch made six saves in Week 20 to move her team to third place in the standings. (Photo credit: Jeremy Reper/isiphotos.com)

Portland Thorns FC goalkeeper Adrianna Franch has been voted NWSL Player of the Week for Week 20 of the 2018 season by the NWSL Media Association.

Franch made six saves and earned her second shutout of the season to help her team defeat the Orlando Pride 2-0 in Week 20. The Thorns leapfrogged the Pride in the league standings with the win and now sit in third place with a 9-6-5 overall record and 32 points.

The Thorns goalkeeper was named Week 14 Player of the Week earlier this season, and picked up Week 20’s Save of the Week for her leaping stop in the 63rd minute to stop Pride forward Marta‘s left-footed shot.

Franch’s first notable save against the Pride came in the 19th minute where she made a diving punch save to stop a Marta free kick from outside the box. In the 88th minute, Franch denied Marta again, tipping her shot over the crossbar.

The NWSL Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter

Save of the Week: Adrianna Franch

The Thorns goalkeeper made six saves in Week 20

Adrianna Franch earned her second shutout this season. (Photo credit:

Portland Thorns FC goalkeeper Adrianna Franch‘s diving save in the 63rd minute to stop a shot from Orlando Pride forward Marta has been voted NWSL Week 20’s Save of the Week.

Watch her save below and catch up on all of this year’s Saves of the Week on our YouTube playlist.

Week 20 Power Rankings: Playoff race heats up, Courage and Reign hold on to top spots

NWSL Power Rankings presented by Cutter

See where each team ranks after Week 20:

 

1

NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE
15-1-5, 50 pts

Change:
Last week: 1

No harm done to the Courage after Week 20. The 2018 NWSL Shield winners may not have snatched all three points over the Red Stars, but they still earned a point on the road to improve to 15-1-5 and 50 points. The Courage are 14 points clear of the second-place Seattle Reign FC and 18 points clear of the third-place Portland Thorns FC. The Courage meet the Pride and Reign in their next two matches and will finish the season off at home against the Houston Dash. Courage forward Lynn Williams is second in the Golden Boot race with 10 goals and forward Jess McDonald is tied for first in the league for assists with six.


2

SEATTLE REIGN FC
10-4-6, 36 pts

Change:
Last week: 2

The Reign won their second straight game on Saturday and secured their spot in second place in the league standings. The Reign are four points clear of the third-place Portland Thorns FC, but will have a difficult test on Wednesday when they meet the Red Stars — who beat them the last meeting out on July 14. The Reign have four more games to pull away from the other teams climbing up the standings, but will have a challenging final two matches facing the Courage and then the Thorns.


3

PORTLAND THORNS FC
9-6-5, 32 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 4

It was a big week for the Thorns as they jumped up to third place in the standings with a dominant 2-0 win over the Pride on Saturday. With the victory, the Thorns leapfrogged the Pride and are now two points ahead of them with a 9-6-5 record and 32 points. Lindsey Horan continues to make her case for being one of the best finishers in the league after she took the lead in the Golden Boot race with 11 goals. The Thorns have four more games left in the regular season — starting with a home game vs. the Red Stars on Saturday night. After that, they have a good chance to pick up six points in their next two outings as they host last place Sky Blue FC on August 22 and then travel to the eighth place Washington Spirit on August 25.


4

CHICAGO RED STARS
7-4-8, 29 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 3

Things are going well for the Chicago Red Stars. They stole a point from the league-leading Courage and are riding a three-game unbeaten streak, despite nearly a month in between games. Plus, Sam Kerr has scored in her last three games and is now tied for second in the Golden Boot race. The Red Stars sit one point behind the Pride for the fourth and final playoff spot and they have five games remaining to Orlando’s three. But the end of the season won’t be easy as four of those games will be on the road — at Seattle, at Portland, at Orlando and then at Utah in their regular season finale.


5

ORLANDO PRIDE
8-7-6, 30 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 6

Both the Pride and Utah Royals FC hurt their playoff hopes with Saturday losses — but the Pride take the fifth spot in the rankings because they hold a two point lead over Utah and still hold the fourth playoff spot for the moment. Orlando will likely need to win all three of their remaining games to have a chance to make the postseason. The fifth-place Red Stars have two more games left to play than the Pride, so the meeting between the two teams on August 25 will be crucial for Orlando’s playoff hopes. The Pride also hold the tiebreaker over the Red Stars, if they end up tied on points at the end of the season.


6

HOUSTON DASH
7-8-5, 26 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 7

The Dash remain close to the playoff race after a 2-1 win over Sky Blue FC on Saturday. The Dash are now four points behind the fourth-place Orlando Pride with a 7-8-5 record and 26 points. Rachel Daly scored twice and is now at nine goals on the year, which puts her at fourth place in the Golden Boot race. The Dash have four games left in the regular season to hoist themselves into a playoff position.


7

UTAH ROYALS FC
7-7-7, 28 pts

Change: ▼ 2
Last week: 5

Utah Royals FC are in sixth place and just two points behind the fourth-place Orlando Pride, but — with just three games remaining — jumping into the final playoff spot will be difficult. They have already lost the season tiebreakers with the Pride, Red Stars and Thorns — all teams ahead of them in the playoff race. Like the Pride, they will likely need to win all three of their remaining games to stay in the playoff hunt.


8

SKY BLUE FC
0-14-4, 4 pts

Change:
Last week: 8

Sky Blue is still in search of their first win of the season after dropping their 14th match of the year on Saturday against the Houston Dash. Sky Blue tied the match in the 64th minute thanks to a goal from Madison Tiernan, but the Dash stole the game back off a penalty kick in the 73rd minute. Sky Blue FC are out of playoff contention, however Kailen Sheridan made nine saves to keep her team close in the game. Sky Blue has the chance to mess up the rest of the league’s playoff hopes with six games remaining in the regular season. Up next, they face the Thorns on the road on Wednesday — a team eager to pull away and secure a top playoff spot.


9

WASHINGTON SPIRIT
2-14-4, 10 pts

Change:
Last week: 9

The Spirit dropped their seventh straight game on Wednesday and now have the longest active losing streak and the longest losing streak in the league this season. The Spirit are in eighth place in the standings with a 2-14-4 record and 10 points. The Spirit are out of the playoffs, yet have four more games left in the season to break their losing streak and shuffle around the rest of the league standings.

Week 20 Rewind

Big wins for the Thorns, Reign and Dash

Seattle Reign FC are now 10-4-6 after a 1-0 win over Utah Royals FC on Saturday. (Photo credit: Bryan Byerly/isiphotos.com)

As the playoff race heats up, here’s a look back at Week 20:

 

 

August 8: Utah Royals FC 1 | Washington Spirit 0

Katie Stengel scored another late game-winner as Utah Royals FC beat the Washington Spirit 1-0 at home to kick off Week 20 in the NWSL. Recap

 


August 10: Chicago Red Stars 1 | North Carolina Courage 1

North Carolina Courage midfielder Debinha scored first, but Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr equalized as the two teams played to a 1-1 draw on Friday night. Recap


August 11: Utah Royals FC 0 | Seattle Reign FC 1

Seattle Reign FC midfielder Jess Fishlock scored her first goal of the season and Lydia Williams earned her eighth shutout of the year as the Reign won 1-0 on the road in Utah. Recap

 


August 11: Sky Blue FC 1 | Houston Dash 2

Houston Dash forward Rachel Daly scored twice and the Dash won 2-1 on the road over Sky Blue FC. Madison Tiernan scored in the loss and Sky Blue goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan made nine saves. Recap


August 11: Orlando Pride 0 | Portland Thorns FC 2

Lindsey Horan scored her 11th goal of the season and Hayley Raso added an insurance goal six minutes later in Portland Thorns FC’s 2-0 win over the Orlando Pride at Orlando City Stadium. The win moves the Thorns into third place in the NWSL standings. Recap

 

Playoff Picture: Anything can happen

Six teams are fighting for the final three playoff spots

The Thorns and Pride will meet on Saturday in Week 20. (Photo credit: Al Sermeno/isiphotos.com)

With just a month left in the NWSL regular season, six teams are fighting for three playoff spots — and the standings are so close that the final three playoff spots seem likely to come down to the final weeks of the season.

Every game counts,” Thorns goalkeeper Adrianna Franch said last week. “[We’ll] continue to take it game by game and hopefully point by point — or three points by three points!”

Franch and other NWSL players from Australia, Brazil, Japan and the United States spoke during the Tournament of Nations in East Hartford, Connecticut, and Bridgeview, Illinois, while the NWSL was on an international break.

Even though we are in second place now, it doesn’t mean anything. It doesn’t give you any promises,” Seattle Reign FC forward Nahomi Kawasumi said through a translator.

The Reign (9-4-6, 33 points) have been in second place for a good portion of the season, but their lead is just a slim three points. Right behind them are the Pride (30 points), Thorns (29 points), Red Stars (28 points), Utah Royals FC (28 points) and the Dash (23 points).

With so many teams in the hunt for the final spots, they’re spending the final quarter of the regular season playing each other in sort of a month-long, play-in tournament ahead of the playoffs. In Week 19, the first four games following the international break showed how close the end of the season could be.

The Reign won at home, but the next two teams in the standings lost. The Thorns fell on the road to the Courage, and the Pride endured a tough home draw with Sky Blue FC. Utah helped themselves keep close in the playoff race with a late comeback win over Houston on Sunday night.

Utah then kicked off Week 20 on Wednesday night with another late win, this time over Washington, and pulled themselves even closer.

“It won’t be easy because everybody has [a chance],” Pride defender Mônica said through a translator. “Everybody has quality.”

One team absent from the Week 19 drama was Chicago. The Red Stars are in fifth place and — thanks to a unique schedule and a postponed game — will have not played a game in 27 days when they take the field against the Courage on Friday night. Then, it’s five more games — four on the road and the rescheduled game vs. Sky Blue FC at home.

“It’s gonna be tough. We have four away games,”  Red Stars forward Sam Kerr said. “And they’re not easy teams too. Portland, Utah, Orlando [and Seattle]. So they’re not easy, but that’s life. And we kinda take that as a jab, so we’re going in really, really motivated.”

Meanwhile, the team at the top of the table, the North Carolina Courage (15-1-4), are 16 points clear of everyone else, already have the NWSL Shield locked up and can spend the next month preparing for their home playoff game — as well as chasing a few NWSL records.

You can definitely tell that we’ve been working hard in North Carolina and it’s definitely paying off and it’s been great. Hopefully, we can just keep up the good work and do well,” Courage defender Abby Dahlkemper said.

The Courage can also play spoiler to a few teams with playoff hopes. North Carolina has four games left this season, all against teams in the playoff race — Red Stars, Pride, Reign and Dash. None of those teams has managed a win against the Courage this season and only two have even earned a point.

After saying she was rooting for the Courage in the ICC tournament vs. Lyon (which the Courage won), Thorns defender Emily Sonnett said her Courage fandom will continue through the rest of the regular season: “I want them to steal points too, baby! Let the Courage steal the points!”

And it’s not just the Courage who can play spoiler — the two teams eliminated from playoff contention, Sky Blue FC and the Washington Spirit, can also cause havoc.

Just this past weekend, Sky Blue escaped with a dramatic road draw vs. the Pride after Kailen Sheridan saved Marta’s penalty in the 97th minute. With the Pride having just four games remaining — and everyone else in the hunt having five or six remaining — they needed all three points to help solidify third place in the NWSL standings. But Sky Blue FC would not let that happen.

The fun is just beginning.

North Carolina just sort of ran off it with it, haven’t they? But, besides that, it’s very, very tight and I think this year it’s closer than ever before and I think it’s really going to come down to the last couple of games,” Caitlin Foord said ahead of her 2018 NWSL debut with the Thorns last weekend. “It’s very competitive and that’s exciting for the league. It’s awesome that it is like that. Hopefully, one of those spots are ours.”

 

Here’s a look at where each team sits in the NWSL standings and their remaining schedule:

 

1. NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE

15-1-4, 49 pts

Goal Differential: +28

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 61

Clinched the NWSL Shield

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Fri., Aug. 10: at Chicago Red Stars
  • Sat., Aug. 18: vs. Orlando Pride
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Sept. 8: vs. Houston Dash

 


2. SEATTLE REIGN FC

9-4-6, 33 pts

Goal Differential: +7

Games Remaining: 5

Max Points Possible: 48

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 11: at Utah Royals FC
  • Wed., Aug. 15: vs. Chicago Red Stars
  • Tue., Aug. 21: vs. Houston Dash
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. North Carolina Courage
  • Fri., Sept. 7: at Portland Thorns FC

 


3. ORLANDO PRIDE

8-6-6, 30 pts

Goal Differential: +1

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 42

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 11: vs. Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Aug. 18: at North Carolina Courage
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. Chicago Red Stars
  • Sat., Sept. 8: at Sky Blue FC

 


4. PORTLAND THORNS FC

8-6-5, 29 pts

Goal Differential: +6

Games Remaining: 5

Max Points Possible: 44

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 11: at Orlando Pride
  • Sat., Aug. 18: vs. Chicago Red Stars
  • Wed., Aug. 22: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Washington Spirit
  • Fri., Sept. 7: vs. Seattle Reign FC

5. CHICAGO RED STARS

7-4-7, 28 pts

Goal Differential: +4

Games Remaining: 6

Max Points Possible: 46

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Fri., Aug. 10: vs. North Carolina Courage
  • Wed., Aug. 15: at Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Aug. 18: at Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Orlando Pride
  • Tue., Sept. 4: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sept. 8: at Utah Royals FC

 


6. UTAH ROYALS FC

7-6-7, 28 pts

Goal Differential: -2

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 40

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 11: vs. Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Aug. 18: at Sky Blue FC
  • Wed., Aug. 22: at Washington Spirit
  • Sat., Sept. 8: vs. Chicago Red Stars

 


7. HOUSTON DASH

6-8-5, 23 pts

Goal Differential: -7

Games Remaining: 5

Max Points Possible: 38

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 11: at Sky Blue FC
  • Fri., Aug. 17: vs. Washington Spirit
  • Tue., Aug. 21: at Seattle Reign FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sept. 8: at North Carolina Courage

8. WASHINGTON SPIRIT

2-14-4, 10 pts

Goal Differential: -17

Games Remaining: 4

Max Points Possible: 22

Eliminated from playoff contention

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Fri., Aug. 17: at Houston Dash
  • Wed., Aug. 22: vs. Utah Royals FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: vs. Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Sept. 1: vs. Sky Blue FC

 


9. SKY BLUE FC

0-13-4, 4 pts

Goal Differential: -20

Games Remaining: 7

Max Points Possible: 25

Eliminated from playoff contention

 

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Aug. 11: vs. Houston Dash
  • Sat., Aug. 18: vs. Utah Royals FC
  • Wed., Aug. 22: at Portland Thorns FC
  • Sat., Aug. 25: at Houston Dash
  • Sat., Sept. 1: at Washington Spirit
  • Tue. Sept. 4: at Chicago Red Stars
  • Sat., Sept. 8: vs. Orlando Pride

Outside the Box Scores: Courage chasing history

The Courage have a chance to break the regular season record for wins in a season

The Courage have gone 15-1-4 through the first 20 games of the season. (Photo credit: Andy Mead/isiphotos.com)

At 15-1-4, the North Carolina Courage have already locked up the NWSL Shield and the No. 1 seed in the NWSL playoffs — but with four games left in the regular season, they have a chance to make some history.

The record for wins in an NWSL regular season is 16 — set by Seattle Reign FC in 2014 and tied by the Courage in 2017. And, if you look at all of women’s professional soccer in the United States, 16 wins is the record across all three leagues — NWSL, Women’s Professional Soccer and the Women’s United Soccer Association. The only other team to record 16 wins in a season is FC Gold Pride in 2010.

 

Seattle Reign FC in 2014:

16-2-6

50 goals for, 20 against, +30 goal differential

54 points, 13 points ahead of the second-place team

 

FC Gold Pride in 2010:

16-3-5

46 goals for, 19 goals against +27 goal differential

53 points, 17 points ahead

 

North Carolina Courage in 2017:

16-7-1

38 goals for, 22 goals against, +16 goal differential

49 points, 2 points ahead

 

North Carolina Courage in 2018, through 20 games:

15-1-4

43 goals for, 15 goals against, +28 goal differential

49 points, 16 points ahead

 

Seattle Reign FC’s 54 points and 50 goals scored also remain records. The Courage need just eight more goals and six more points over their last four games to break those. Whether they finish more points ahead of the second place finisher than FC Gold Pride did in 2010, will likely come down to the wire.

The 2018 Courage are also chasing the highest points per game across all three leagues.

While the teams mentioned above all did their damage in 24-game seasons, the points per game record brings in a few more teams that played shorter seasons: the 2011 Western New York Flash and the 2009 Los Angeles Sol of WPS, as well as the 2016 Portland Thorns FC and 2015 Seattle Reign FC of the NWSL.

The Flash only played 18 games in the World Cup shortened season of 2011, but finished 13-2-3 with 42 points, which factors out to 2.33 points per game. The Sol went 12-3-5 over 20 games in 2009 — 41 points and 2.05 points per game. The Thorns went 12-3-5 over 20 games in 2016 — 41 points and 2.05 points per game. The Reign followed up their 2014 campaign with a 13-3-4 record in 20 games in 2015 — 43 points and 2.15 points per game.

 

1. 2018 North Carolina Courage, so far: 2.45 points per game

2. 2011 Western New York Flash: 2.33 points per game

3. 2014 Seattle Reign FC: 2.25 points per game

4. 2010 FC Gold Pride: 2.21 points per game

5. 2015 Seattle Reign FC: 2.15 points per game

6. (tie) 2009 Los Angeles Sol: 2.05 points per game

6. (tie) 2016 Portland Thorns FC: 2.05 points per game

8. 2017 North Carolina Courage: 2.04 points per game

 

The Courage need at least eight points in their final four games (57 points or higher to end the season) to finish with a higher points per game average than 2.33. Even if they don’t earn another point this season, they will still average 2.04 — the same as last year.

Between the 2017 and 2018 seasons, the Courage have already eclipsed the mark for most wins over a two season span in the NWSL with 31 wins over the last two years. The 2014/2015 Reign had 29 wins over two seasons, the previous high mark.

For those wondering, the best regular season finish in the WUSA was the 2002 Carolina Courage. They went 12-5-4 with 40 points in 21 games (1.90 points per game). Carolina scored 40 goals and allowed 30 goals for a +10 goal differential.

Janine Beckie joins Manchester City after transfer from Sky Blue FC

The forward joins Manchester City of the FA Women’s Super League

Janine Beckie has played in 15 games for Sky Blue FC this season. (Photo credit: Howard C. Smith/isiphotos.com)

Forward Janine Beckie will be leaving Sky Blue FC and the National Women’s Soccer League to join Manchester City of the FA Women’s Super League. Sky Blue FC agreed upon the transfer and announced the move on Thursday.

The Canadian international played in 15 games this season, starting in 11 for Sky Blue. Sky Blue are in last place in the league standings with a 0-13-4 overall record. Before joining the New Jersey club, Beckie played the previous two NWSL seasons with the Houston Dash.

In addition to Sky Blue’s statement following the transfer, Beckie said some words of her own on Twitter:

Sky Blue will next play on Saturday, August 11 vs. the Houston Dash.

Watch: 3 Moments

Debinha, Chioma Ubogagu, Becky Sauerbrunn

Orlando Pride forward Chioma Ubogagu in action. (Photo credit: Jeremy Reper/isiphotos.com)

Three moments from Week 19 in the NWSL:

Watch 3 Moments from Week 19 below, and catch all past weeks on the YouTube playlist.

 

 

Goal of the Week: Katie Stengel

The Utah Royals FC forward scored her fourth goal of the season

Stengel's game winning goal moved Utah to sixth place in the standings. (Photo credit:

Utah Royals FC forward Katie Stengel‘s game winner vs. the Houston Dash in the 83rd minute has been voted Week 19’s Goal of the Week.

Watch the Week 19 Goal of the Week below and catch up on all of this year’s Goals of the Week on the YouTube playlist.

Player of the Week: Lynn Williams

The Courage forward scored a brace in Week 19

Lynn Williams leads the Golden Boot race with ten goals and four assists. (Photo credit:

North Carolina Courage forward Lynn Williams has been voted NWSL Player of the Week for Week 19 of the 2018 season by the NWSL Media Association.

Williams scored two goals to lead the Courage to a 2-1 win over Portland Thorns FC on Sunday. With the victory, the Courage clinched the 2018 NWSL Shield and are now 15-1-4 (49 pts) overall. Her brace on the night pushed her to the forefront of the Golden Boot race with 10 goals and four assists this season. Williams is also first in the league with shots (77).

Against the Thorns, Williams took 10 shots, four on target and made two key passes in 46 touches, according to Opta. The last time that Williams and the Courage faced the Thorns, Williams also scored a brace.

It is the third time Williams has been honored as the NWSL Player of the Week in her career, and second time this season.

Williams’ first goal in Week 19 came in the 37th minute. Courage midfielder McCall Zerboni won the ball from Thorns forward Christine Sinclair in the box which eventually led to a Courage fast break sparked by Debinha in the middle. Debinha found forward Jess McDonald out wide and McDonald played a service into the box where Williams finished it off one time for her ninth goal of the year.

In the 45th minute, defender Merritt Mathias served a ball into the box that eventually deflected to the feet of Williams. Williams tapped it in for her tenth goal of the season.

The NWSL Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

Save of the Week: Ashlyn Harris

The Orlando Pride goalkeeper made four saves in Week 19

Ashlyn Harris has made 60 saves this season for the Pride. (Photo credit:

Orlando Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris tipped the ball over the bar in the 69th minute to stop Sky Blue FC midfielder Carli Lloyd‘s shot. Her save has been voted Week 19’s Save of the Week.

Watch her save below and catch up on all of this year’s Saves of the Week on our YouTube playlist.

Week 19 Power Rankings: Courage still No. 1, every other team changes spots

NWSL Power Rankings presented by Cutter

See where each team ranks after Week 19:

 

1

NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE
15-1-4, 49 pts

Change:
Last week: 1

The Courage clinched the 2018 NWSL Shield on Sunday night defeating Portland Thorns FC 2-1. Lynn Williams scored a brace on the night to hand the Courage their NWSL Shield for the second year in a row. The Courage are now 15-1-4 with 49 points – 16 points ahead of the second-place Seattle Reign FC. The Courage will next face the fifth-place Chicago Red Stars on Friday night. The Courage have four more games left of the regular season and if they win all four they could have a maximum of 61 points headed into the postseason.


2

SEATTLE REIGN FC
9-4-6, 33 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 3

Seattle Reign FC move up to second place in the power rankings and hold on to second place in the league standings after shutting out the Spirit 2-0 in Week 19. The Reign are 9-4-6 with 33 points in the standings and sit three points ahead of the third-place Orlando Pride. Reign forward Jasmyne Spencer and Jodie Taylor scored on the night. The Reign have fives games left in the regular season and will travel to Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday to face Utah Royals FC.


3

CHICAGO RED STARS
7-4-7, 28 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 4

The Red Stars were off in Week 19 but remain just one point behind the fourth place Thorns for a playoff spot. The Red Stars defeated the second-place Reign 1-0 the last time out and will return to action on Friday against the league-leading North Carolina Courage. The Red Stars are in fifth place with a 7-4-7 overall record and 28 points and have five games left to continue on to postseason action.


4

PORTLAND THORNS FC
8-6-5, 29 pts

Change: ▼ 2
Last week: 2

Portland suffered a 2-1 loss to the Courage in Week 19. The loss snapped their three-game winning streak and handed the Courage the 2018 NWSL Shield. The Thorns remain in fourth place in the league standings with a 8-6-5 overall record and 29 points. Lindsey Horan scored the Thorns only goal of the game off of a free kick from Tobin Heath. The Thorns will next face the third-place Orlando Pride on Saturday – with a win the Thorns could jump the Pride in the standings. After Saturday the Thorns will only have three games left in the season.


5

UTAH ROYALS FC
6-6-7, 25 pts

Change: ▲ 2
Last week: 7

Utah’s come-from-behind 2-1 victory over the Dash moved them to sixth place in the league standings. Utah swapped places with the Dash in the standings and are now four points behind the fourth-place Thorns FC. Utah Royals FC are 6-6-7 with 25 points and have a busy week ahead hosting the Spirit on Wednesday and then the second-place Reign FC on Saturday. After Week 20, Utah will only have three more games left in the regular season.


6

ORLANDO PRIDE
8-6-6, 30 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 5

A high-drama packed 2-2 draw vs. Sky Blue drops the Pride to 8-6-6 with 30 points. Despite just earning one point in Week 19, the draw is still good enough for third place in the NWSL standings. The Pride have just four games left to play – which is at least a game or two less than their nearest competitors in the standings. The Pride next face fourth-place Portland Thorns FC on Saturday. The Thorns are just one point behind the Pride.


7

HOUSTON DASH
6-8-5, 23 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 6

The Dash couldn’t keep hold of their 1-0 early lead vs. Utah Royals FC, dropping three points on Sunday in a 2-1 loss. The Dash dropped to seventh place in the standings, swapping spots with Utah. The Dash are 6-8-5 with 23 points and have five more games to play to work their way up in the standings into a playoff spot. Next up, the Dash will look to bounce back against Sky Blue FC on Saturday.


8

SKY BLUE FC
0-13-4, 4 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 9

Sky Blue moves out of last place into eighth place in Week 19’s power rankings after putting up a fight against the third-place Orlando Pride on Sunday. Sky Blue and the Pride played to a 2-2 draw and Sky Blue earned a point to improve to 0-13-4 overall with four points. The New Jersey club remains in search of their first win of the season and will have a tough task ahead without the presence of midfielder Carli Lloyd in their next match. Lloyd received a red card against the Pride, so she will be out of Sky Blue’s game vs. the Dash on Saturday.


9

WASHINGTON SPIRIT
2-13-4, 10 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 8

The Spirit suffered their sixth straight loss on Sunday night, falling to the Reign 2-0. This is the Spirit’s tenth straight game without a win and the result drops them to 2-13-4 with 10 points. The Spirit return to action on Wednesday vs. Utah Royals FC and will look to not only earn a win on the road, but will also be on the hunt for a goal – they have only scored once in their last nine games.


July Team of the Month

The July Team of the Month presented by Cutter

The National Women’s Soccer League’s July Team of the Month has been announced. Portland Thorns midfielder and July Player of the Month Lindsey Horan and Courage midfielder McCall Zerboni each make their fourth Team of the Month appearance, after playing critical roles in the midfield for both of their teams’ undefeated runs in July. Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe receives the honor for the first time since March. Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr earns a spot in the Team of the Month lineup for the first time this season after a four-goal month, alongside two Red Stars teammates, defender Katie Naughton (first-time honoree) and midfielder Yuki Nagasato (June, July).

With three players earning the honor, the Chicago Red Stars take the lead in representation on the July Team of the Month. This marks the first time this season that the league-leading North Carolina Courage have not solely claimed or been tied for the highest number of players on the roster.

The July Team of the Month was selected by the NWSL Media Association. The team lines up in a 4-3-3 formation.

GK: Adrianna Franch, Portland Thorns FC

Adrianna Franch made five saves in July, as the Portland Thorns went undefeated on the month. In two appearances, Franch conceded just one goal and helped the Thorns to a clean sheet victory over Utah Royals FC. This season, Franch has also earned Player of the Week Honors (Week 14) and back-to-back Save of the Week recognition (Week 14 and Week 15), and this marks her first Team of the Month honor of 2018.


D: Katie Naughton, Chicago Red Stars

Katie Naughton played every minute of all four of the Chicago Red Stars’ July games. Naughton anchored the Chicago defense in July, making 17 clearances, earning seven interceptions, and winning 21 duels, as the Red Stars went 3-1-0 on the month. This is Naughton’s first Team of the Month honor of the 2018 season.


D: Rachel Corsie, Utah Royals FC

Rachel Corsie makes the July Team of the Month after becoming the first field player to be recognized for Save of the Week honors this season, earning the award for her critical defending for Utah Royals FC in Week 16 and Week 17 play. Corsie finished the month with 17 clearances, four interceptions, and 19 wins in duels. This is Corsie’s first 2018 appearance on the Team of the Month.


D: Abby Erceg, North Carolina Courage

With her July recognition, North Carolina center back and captain Abby Erceg makes her third straight appearance in the Team of the Month. Erceg remains the only Courage player to have played every minute of the season after logging another 360 minutes in North Carolina’s four games in July. Erceg maintained an 82.33% passing accuracy in that time, the highest pass completion percentage of any player in this lineup. Erceg additionally won 24 total duels, made 23 clearances in the month, and recorded 243 touches on the month.


D: Theresa Nielsen, Seattle Reign FC

Theresa Nielsen played all 360 minutes of the Reign’s four games in July as her team went 2-1-1 on the month. In that time, Nielsen got 294 touches on the ball, made 18 interceptions, tallied eight clearances, and won 24 duels. In addition to holding down the Reign’s backline throughout the month, Nielsen created six offensive chances for her team, more than any other defender on this roster (by a margin of five).


M: Lindsey Horan, Portland Thorns FC

Lindsey Horan has now been named to the Team of the Month four times (March, May, June, July), tying her for the most Team of the Month honors with fellow midfielder McCall Zerboni of the North Carolina Courage. Horan showed her versatility this month, dominating in both offensive and defensive statistics, across the league and for the Thorns. In two appearances, Horan won 25 duels, got off seven shots (five on goal), recorded 184 touches, and made seven clearances.


M: Yuki Nagasato, Chicago Red Stars

Yuki Nagasato secures a place in the Team of the Month for the second straight month after adding two more goals to her season tally and recording a July Team of the Month high of three assists in on the month. Nagasato was pivotal to the Red Stars midfield throughout July, as she won nine fouls, created 10 chances, and completed 114 passes with a passing accuracy of 80.08%. Nagasato also made three interceptions and won three tackles to round out the month.


M: McCall Zerboni, North Carolina Courage

McCall Zerboni continues to be a Team of the Month staple as she makes the roster for the fourth straight month. The Courage midfielder played all 90 minutes in three of the North Carolina Courage’s June games. In that time, Zerboni got 206 touches on the ball, completed 119 passes, won nine fouls, and created four chances. She continued to prove her importance to the league-leaders’ midfield success, adding eight interceptions, five clearances, and six successful tackles.


F: Sam Kerr, Chicago Red Stars

Sam Kerr’s July goal tally leads among her fellow honorees on the Team of the Month roster. The Chicago forward scored four goals, notably netting a hat trick and a game winner in two of her four games in the month. In July, Kerr became the first NWSL player to score a hat trick this season and the first NWSL player in history to reach (and surpass) 50 career goals. Kerr finished the month with 31 shots on goal, 15 of which were on target. She created 12 chances, won 10 aerial duels, and sent four successful crosses in 197 total touches on the month. Kerr was also recognized for Player of the Week honors in Week 15, at the beginning of July.


F: Rachel Daly, Houston Dash

The Dash forward earns her third Team of the Month recognition of the season (March, May, July) after an impressive month on her team’s front line. Daly found the back of the net three times in July. She went the full 90 in all four games for the Dash, and got off 12 shots (five on frame), created four chances, won 21 duels, and completed 81 passes.


F: Megan Rapinoe, Seattle Reign FC

The Seattle Reign forward earns her second Team of the Month nod of the 2018 season (March, July) after scoring twice and making a pair of assists in 270 minutes, leading the offensive charge for the Reign. Rapinoe leads the attacking contingent of the Team of the Month with her 223 touches on the ball on the month. She also won 25 duels and created nine chances. Rapinoe continues to lead the league in shots on target this season, adding four on-frame shots in July.


The NWSL Team of the Month is selected each month of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

Rose Lavelle makes the most of her return to the USWNT starting XI

Lavelle made her first USWNT start since September of 2017

Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle celebrates her goal for the U.S. women's national team on Thursday night at Toyota Park. (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)

Bridgeview, Illinois — Eleven months since her last start for the U.S. women’s national team. Thirteen months since her last goal.

On Thursday night vs. Brazil, Rose Lavelle snapped both of those streaks.

I was a little nervous, but just kind of had to calm myself down, and trust in my progression and where I’m at and just enjoy the moment,” Lavelle said after the United States’ 4-1 win, which also gave them the 2018 Tournament of Nations title. Lavelle’s goal was the first of four unanswered for the United States in the comeback victory.

Before Thursday’s game, Lavelle’s last goal — with the USWNT or in the NWSL — came vs. Sweden on June 8, 2017, just three days before she suffered the hamstring injury that kept her out for most of the past year. Her last start for the U.S. was on September 19, 2017 in a friendly vs. New Zealand.

This year, the Spirit midfielder has worked her way back slowly in the NWSL — one start over six appearances —  and for the USWNT, appearing in all three Tournament of Nations games after making her 2018 debut in June.

Rose is a very different type of player. She’s really special. We recognized that a long time ago and obviously had to wait a long time for this night in terms of getting her back healthy and being able to get her out there for 45 minutes,” U.S. women’s national team head coach Jill Ellis said. “I’m happy for her.”

First, Lavelle played the final 26 minutes of the United States’ win over Japan last week. Next, the final 11 in the draw with Australia on Sunday. Then finally on Thursday night at Toyota Park, her first start since last year.

“My mindset has kind of just been taking it training by training, game by game, and resetting after each training and game. I think that kind of helped me going into this game,” Lavelle said. “Whether the 45 minutes is good or bad, it’s kind of a small victory to be able to go out and get my first start and 45 minutes under my belt.”

Lavelle started in the midfield alongside Julie Ertz and Lindsey Horan and combined well with forward Tobin Heath. With the plan for her to play the first half, Lavelle capitalized on her opportunity, scoring the equalizing goal in the 33rd minute after the United States fell behind in the 16th minute. Horan found her in space in the box, and Lavelle buried the shot.

It’s Lavelle’s third international goal in just her 11th career cap, after making her international debut in March of 2017.

“I think that was kind of the monkey on my shoulders, that had been kind of been weighing on my back since I’ve been back. When am I gonna get that first goal?” Lavelle said. I probably shouldn’t say this, but I feel like usually I shank those way over the goal. So, I just wanted to make good contact with it and thankfully this time I did.”

United States wins the Tournament of Nations

Lavelle, Ertz, Heath and Morgan score for the United States

Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan made it 4-1 vs. Brazil (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)

Australia and the United States both won on the final day of the 2018 Tournament of Nations at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois, yet it was the United States that won the trophy this year with a come-from-behind 4-1 victory over Brazil in the finale.

The USWNT had to win by two or more against Brazil (after Australia’s 2-0 result over Japan earlier) to beat the Matildas out for the tournament trophy. They did just that and more, thanks to goals from Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle, Chicago Red Stars midfielder Julie Ertz, Portland Thorns FC midfielder Tobin Heath and Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan.

This is the United States’ first 2018 Tournament of Nations title.

Australia 2, Japan 0

Orlando Pride defender Alanna Kennedy and Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr scored as Australia beat Japan 2-0 in their final match of the 2018 Tournament of Nations. Japan, the recent AFC Women’s Asian Cup champions, could not win the tournament heading into Thursday’s game and finished in last place with an 0-3-0 record.

Kennedy got her team on the board first to kick off the second half when she sent a low free kick from outside the 18-yard box. Her shot snuck past Japan goalkeeper Chika Hirao at the near post.

It would only be right for Kerr to get one of her own on her Red Stars home turf. In the 80th minute, Houston Dash forward Kyah Simon won the ball in the midfield and played a perfectly weighted through ball into Kerr’s stride. Kerr got a touch around Hirao and finished it with her right foot to the far post to seal the game at 2-0.


United States 4, Brazil 1

Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle, Chicago Red Stars midfielder Julie Ertz, Portland Thorns FC midfielder Tobin Heath and Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan all scored to ensure the U.S. would win the 2018 Tournament of Nations.

The USWNT found themselves in a difficult spot early when a Brazil transition down the right flank forced an own goal from Tierna Davidson in the 16th minute. North Carolina Courage forward Debinha controlled the ball in the midfield and played in Beatriz down the right side. Beatriz sent a dangerous service in behind the U.S. defense, and Davidson attempted to clear it it snuck past Chicago Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher to give Brazil the 1-0 lead.

In the 33rd minute, Lavelle equalized for the United States scoring a half-volley past Brazil goalkeeper Letícia. Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe sent the initial service and Morgan got a head on it, tapping it to Thorns midfielder Lindsey Horan. Horan, with time and space to pick out Lavelle, played her at the top of the box where Lavelle was able to hit it one time and score her third international goal.

In the second half, Tobin Heath put on an absolute clinic near the end-line, beating several Brazilian defenders then sending a cheeky service to the far post where Ertz was crashing. Ertz got on the end of it, sliding one home for the 2-1 lead.

Heath then went on to get one of her own not long after providing the assist. Horan played a long ball over to Morgan on the left side and Morgan collected the service and dribbled centrally. Morgan then played a back pass to the top of the box where Heath was tracking. She hit it one time for the two-goal lead in the 61st minute.

The assist-then-goal trend only continued when Morgan scored the game’s final goal in the 77th minute. Rapinoe curled a free kick service into the box where Morgan was completely unmarked. Morgan scored with her left foot one time to seal the game at 4-1.

Next up, the United States will have two friendly matches against Chile (Aug. 31 in Los Angeles and Sept. 4 in San Jose) before World Cup Qualifying.

 


– Tournament of Nations Match Report –

Match: Australia vs. Japan
Date: August 2, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nations
Venue: Toyota Park; Bridgeview, Ill.
Kickoff: 5:45 p.m. CT
Attendance: 11,922
Weather: 85 degrees, mostly cloudy

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F
AUS                             0          2          2
JPN                             0          0          0

AUS – Alanna Kennedy                                  47th minute
AUS – Sam Kerr                                             81

Lineups:
AUS: 1-Lydia Williams (capt.); 21-Ellie Carpenter, 14-Alanna Kennedy, 8-Elise Kellond-Knight, 4-Clare Polkinghorne (22-Larissa Crummer, 29); 19-Katrina Gorry (23-Alex Chidiac, 79); 6-Chloe Logarzo (9-Caitlin Foord, 68), 17-Kyah Simon (3-Amy Sayer, 90), 11-Lisa De Vanna (15-Emily Gielnik, 29), 16-Hayley Raso; 20-Sam Kerr
Subs not used: 18-Mackenzie Arnold, 5-Mary Fowler, 7-Laura Alleway
Head coach: Alen Stajcic

JPN: 21-Chika Hirao; 15-Moeno Sakaguchi (12-Hina Sugita, 71), 3-Aya Sameshima (capt.), 4-Shiori Miyake, 22-Risa Shimizu; 6-Saori Ariyoshi, 16-Rin Sumida (19-Rika Masuya, 46); 14-Yui Hasegawa (9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 85), 20-Kumi Yokoyama (24-Narumi Miura, 46), 7-Emi Nakajima (8-Mana Iwabuchi, 46); 11-Mina Tanaka (13-Yuika Sugasawa, 46)
Subs not used: 1-Sakiko Ikeda, 2-Maya Doko, 17-Yuka Momiki, 18-Ayaka Yamashita, 23-Aimi Kunitake
Head coach: Asako Takakura

Stats Summary: AUS / JPN
Shots: 19 / 9
Shots on Goal: 6 / 3
Saves:  3 / 4
Corner Kicks: 4 / 3
Fouls: 9 / 9
Offside: 3 / 5

Misconduct Summary
AUS – Hayley Raso (caution)                         18th minute
JPN – Narumi Miura (caution)                                    46
AUS – Alanna Kennedy (caution)                              75                                               

Officials: 
Referee:  Katja Koroleva (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Alicia Messer (USA)
Assistant Referee 2:  Jennifer Garner (USA)
4th Official:  Cecile Hinds (TRI)


 

– U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Brazil
Date: August 2, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nation
Kickoff: 8:30 p.m. ET
Attendance:  18,309
Weather: 83 degrees, mostly cloudy

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F
USA                             1          3          4
BRA                             1          0          1

BRA – Tierna Davidson (own goal)                16th minute
USA – Rose Lavelle (Lindsey Horan)            33
USA – Julie Ertz (Tobin Heath)                      53
USA – Tobin Heath (Alex Morgan)                 61
USA – Alex Morgan (Megan Rapinoe)           77

Lineups:
USA: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 22-Emily Sonnett, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn (7-Abby Dahlkemper, 88); 16-Rose Lavelle (5-McCall Zerboni, 46), 2-Julie Ertz, 9-Lindsey Horan; 17-Tobin Heath (14-Casey Short, 69), 13-Alex Morgan (capt.) (23-Christen Press, 90), 15-Megan Rapinoe (10-Carli Lloyd, 80)
Subs not used: 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Ashlyn Harris, 3-Samantha Mewis, 6-Morgan Brian, 8-Amy Rodriguez, 11-Merritt Mathias, 20-Allie Long
Head coach: Jill Ellis

BRA: 22-Leticia; 23-Rayanne (14-Poliana, 74), 21-Monica, 15-Tayla, 6-Tamires (7-Camila, 36); 18-Thais (20-Raquel, 69), 5-Thaisa (8-Juliana, 90), 11-Adriana, 9-Debinha (2-Millene, 78); 10-Marta (capt.), 16-Beatriz
Subs not used: 1-Barbara, 12-Aline, 3-Daiane, 4-Kathellen, 13-Rilany, 17-Andressinha, 19-Joyce
Head coach: Oswaldo Alvarez (Vadão)

Final Stats Summary: USA / BRA
Shots: 21 / 7
Shots on Goal: 8 / 1
Saves: 0 / 4
Corner Kicks: 4 / 1
Fouls: 15 / 13
Offside: 6 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Crystal Dunn (caution)                        12th minute
BRA – Camila (caution)                                  44
BRA – Tayla (caution)                        74

Officials: 
Referee: Quetzalli Alvarado (MEX)
Assistant Referee 1: Enedina Caudillo (MEX)
Assistant Referee 2:  Stephanie-Dale Yee Sing (JAM)
4th Official: Mirian Leon (SLV)

July Player of the Month: Lindsey Horan

The Thorns midfielder scored three goals in July

Horan is tied for first in the league in goals with nine. (Photo credit: Craig Mitchelldyer/isiphotos.com)

Portland Thorns FC midfielder Lindsey Horan has been voted July Player of the Month by the NWSL Media Association.

Horan scored three goals and chipped in one assist to lead the Thorns to an undefeated 3-0 run during the month of July. Horan did not play in the Thorns 2-1 win over Sky Blue FC to cap off the month due to her call-up to the U.S. women’s national team. The Thorns are third in the league standings with an 8-5-5 overall record and 29 points.

In the two games she did play for the Thorns, Horan led her team to a 4-0 win over Utah Royals FC and then a 3-1 victory vs. the Houston Dash. She led her team with touches and passes in both games, taking 183 touches and making 129 total passes. She also took five shots on goal and created five chances over the two-game span.

It is the first time Horan has been honored as the NWSL Player of the Month.

Horan is tied with Red Stars forward Sam Kerr for the league-lead in goals this season with nine.

Horan headed home her first goal of the month off a free kick service from Tobin Heath in the 32nd minute vs. Utah Royals FC.

Against the Dash, Horan scored a brace to tie up the Golden Boot race with Kerr. Her first goal of the night came in the 16th minute where she once again headed one home. Emily Sonnett played a cross into the penalty spot and Horan beat goalkeeper Jane Campbell to head it in. It was Horan’s ninth header goal, which is the most for any NWSL player over the past three seasons.

In the 31st minute, she scored her ninth goal of the season. Horan tapped it over the line after a Heath free kick created a frenzy in the box eventually bouncing off the crossbar right into Horan’s touch.

 

Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr finished second in Player of the Month voting. Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe was third.

The NWSL Player of the Month is selected each month of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

Johnson, Henninger and Mexico win 2018 Central American and Caribbean Games

Johnson scored three goals in the tournament

Katie Johnson in action for Mexico vs. the United States in April 2018. (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)

Sky Blue FC forward Katie Johnson scored as Mexico came from behind to beat Costa Rica 3-1 and win the 2018 Central American and Caribbean Games on Monday night in Barranquilla, Colombia.

Trailing 1-0 in the final after conceding a penalty kick in the 14th minute, Mexico scored in the 59th, 60th and 62nd minutes to complete the comeback and seal the win. Johnson’s goal was the final score in Mexico’s run of three goals in four minutes.

Houston Dash goalkeeper Bianca Henninger played the second half of the win vs. Costa Rica after subbing in when Cecilia Santiago left the match due to injury.

Johnson finished the tournament with three goals, tied for a team-high. Mexico outscored opponents in the tournament 18-3 on their way to the win.

O’Reilly, D’Angelo lead the Courage to inaugural ICC championship

The Courage defeat Lyon 1-0 in the ICC Women's Tournament final

Heather O'Reilly scored the eventual game-winner in the tenth minute. (Photo credit: Lewis Gettier/isiphotos.com)

Miami, Florida — For the first time all season, the North Carolina Courage were the underdogs. On Sunday night at Hard Rock Stadium, the NWSL-leading Courage were up against five-time UEFA Champions Olympique Lyonnais in the International Champions Cup Women’s Tournament final. Thanks to a first-half goal from Courage midfielder Heather O’Reilly and a shutout performance from goalkeeper Sabrina D’Angelo, the Courage squeaked out a 1-0 victory over Lyon and became the first-ever champions of the ICC Women’s Tournament.

“I remember it coming across and I just wanted to make some good contact with it,” O’Reilly said of her goal after the game. “I feel like I made decent contact, but I obviously played it right to the keeper. It had enough on it so it kind went under her, but I was lucky that it crossed the line. But I’ll take it.”

O’Reilly’s game-winning goal came off of a cross from Courage forward Lynn Williams in the tenth minute. This was O’Reilly’s first goal for the Courage, after joining the team in late June.

O’Reilly’s face after she scored said it all: tongue out, arms wide—pure pride. The former Arsenal midfielder not only scored her first goal for the Courage, but did so against a world class team on a historic stage. Yet, if you ask O’Reilly about what scoring meant to her or about what her personal performance meant, she’ll divert all the credit to her team.

“There’s grit involved in [this], there’s fitness, there’s focus and there’s depth.  The players that came off the bench were really impressive and some of them were rookies—Morgan Reid, Ryan Williams—playing in the back, I’m really proud of these girls. Darian [Jenkins] getting us into this game, scoring in the last game,” O’Reilly said.

The Courage came to the ICC without six of their usual starters due to the Tournament of Nations. Abby DahlkemperCrystal DunnMerritt MathiasSamantha Mewis, and McCall Zerboni all were called up to the U.S. women’s national team and Debinha was called in for Brazil.

This tournament gave North Carolina head coach Paul Riley a chance to give minutes to some of the younger and new players, but also try out a new formation. The Courage fielded a 4-1-4-1 against Lyon. This lineup marked the first time the Courage have played with a lone forward since relocating as a club to North Carolina. Defender Ryan Williams earned her first start for the Courage on Sunday night, while defender Morgan Reid earned her first professional appearance in the Courage’s Thursday night semifinal 2-1 victory against Paris Saint-Germain.

“Ryan was a 22-year-old playing against [Eugénie] Le Sommer on that right-hand side,” Riley said after the game. “She [Williams] went up to me after the game and was like ‘Oh, she’s so good!'”

Le Sommer—who scored a brace in Lyon’s semifinal win over Manchester City in their opening match of the tournament—and Lyon are still in preseason but were in good form for the ICC. Lyon started five of their players who were recently named to the FIFA The Best Women’s Player short list: Amandine HenryWendie RenardLucy BronzeAda Hegerberg, and Saki Kumagai.

The Courage had to play a formation that would clog the lanes out and force Lyon to play outside. D’Angelo earned her first start in net since May and picked up a huge clean sheet on the night.

“Sabs is a shot-blocker,” Riley said. “She was more than that tonight, though, she was well-organized and her feet were great tonight.” D’Angelo finished the game with five saves and kept Lyon off the board, despite their 23 shots attempted.

“We knew what we were up against,” D’Angelo said after the game. “Paul came out with a great plan with what we were supposed to do. We were very gritty out there and we were doing everything we had to do to block the shots.”

In the 72nd minute, Lyon had a corner kick opportunity and found Amel Majri wide open at the top of the box. Majri was able to get a strike off in traffic as Courage center back Abby Erceg pressed up towards Majri immediately. Erceg got a foot on Majri’s shot, deflecting it, and D’Angelo followed up making a diving save to keep her side ahead. Lyon finished the game with nine corners to the Courage’s three.

Just a minute later, a collective Courage defensive effort kept Lyon off the board. Le Sommer took a free kick from the left side of the pitch and D’Angelo came off of her line to make the save. The ball escaped D’Angelo and Renard got a piece of it, but her shot went off the post. In a complete scramble in the box, Erceg cleaned it up and made the clearance in traffic.

Lyon held the better of the possession on the night at 70.6% to the Courage’s 29.4%.

“For us to have a clean sheet is something that we are incredibly proud of,” O’Reilly said.

Riley spoke after the game about the pre-game jitters his side felt. But, he said there was one player on his team that brought an overarching calmness to the bus, locker room and pitch.

“[Heather] came in and scored a goal, but even more than that she settled the players in in the locker room before the game. [We] had some anxious faces when I walked in the locker room and a lot of talking going on, ‘Oh we gotta do this, we gotta watch this, we gotta watch that,’ so I think she settled everyone down. She’s been around the block a few times so having her experience was good for us tonight.”

Riley also mentioned that O’Reilly spent a lot of the first half working with Ryan Williams on the right side, talking her through it all.

“I mean seeing Ryan out there,” D’Angelo said, “KK [Kaleigh Kurtz], Yuri [Kawamura] and Caro [Cari Roccarro] and just watching them all move and do their thing—I had full trust in them and you could see that they trusted us as well.”

The European champions had nothing but good things to say about their experience playing against an American club. Lyon defender Lucy Bronze, who played for the North Carolina Tar Heels alongside Courage forward Jess McDonald and defender Merritt Mathias, may have known a bit more about the North Carolina side than some of her teammates, having played in the States.

“Americans just go, go, go,” Bronze said after the game. “They just never give up and I think that’s what got them that goal in the first half.”

Bronze said she follows the NWSL a little bit. “I know they are the top of the league. I know Jess McDonald, HAO [O’Reilly] and some of the coaches as well from when I used to play. Every American team is physical, athletic and they like to press. I think that’s what they were very good at tonight.”

Courage defeat Lyon to win inaugural ICC Women’s Tournament

Heather O'Reilly scores the game-winner

The North Carolina Courage defeated Lyon 1-0 in the ICC final. (Photo credit: Lewis Gettier/isiphotos.com)

Miami, Florida — The North Carolina Courage became the first-ever champions of the inaugural International Champions Cup Women’s Tournament with a 1-0 victory over five-time UEFA Champion Olympique Lyonnais on Sunday night at Hard Rock Stadium.

Midfielder Heather O’Reilly scored the Courage’s game-winner in just the tenth minute of action. Her finish was her first for the Courage since joining the team from Arsenal last month.

Courage forward Lynn Williams picked off a back pass from Lyon defender Saki Kumagai and whipped a cross off into the center of the box where O’Reilly was crashing. O’Reilly finished it off one-time past Lyon goalkeeper Lisa Weiss.

The final featured two of the best clubs in their respective leagues. The Courage got the better of the result and earned the historic victory and will return to NWSL action where they top the league with a 14-1-4 overall record and 46 points. Lyon are in preseason ahead of their season and suited a squad of world class players in the tournament. Five Lyon players who were in the starting lineup against the Courage were recently named to the FIFA The Best Women’s Player short list: Amandine HenryWendie RenardLucy BronzeAda Hegerberg and Saki Kumagai.

The match slipped away from Lyon early thanks to O’Reilly’s goal, however the French side saw the better of the possession on the night dominating 70.6% to the Courage’s 29.4%. Lyon finished with 23 shots to the Courage’s seven. Courage goalkeeper Sabrina D’Angelo earned her first start since May and earned a shutout on the night making five saves.

Watch the full highlights from the ICC final below:

Marta, Horan goals highlight Day 2 of the Tournament of Nations

Brazil beat Japan and the United States scored late to tie Austalia

Orlando Pride forward Marta celebrates her goal for Brazil (left) and Portland Thorns FC midfielder Lindsey Horan celebrates her goal for the United States. (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)

Brazil beat Japan 2-1 and the United States earned a late draw with Australia on Day 2 of the Tournament of Nations in East Hartford, Connecticut.

Next up: USA vs. Brazil and Japan vs. Australia on Thursday night at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois.

Three teams still have a chance to win the Tournament of Nations title: Australia (4 points), United States (4 points) and Brazil (3 points).

 

Brazil 2 Japan 1

Orlando Pride forward Marta broke a scoreless deadlock with a goal in the 76th minute, and Brazil went on to beat Japan 2-1 to kick off Day 2 at the Tournament of Nations in East Hartford, Connecticut.

Brazil took advantage of a giveaway in the back by Japan and Raquel quickly passed the ball to Marta as the two pressured Japan’s backline. In a move NWSL fans are well familiar with, Marta cut to her left, and then sent a left-footed shot to the far post and past Japan goalkeeper Sakiko Ikeda.

 

Brazil and Japan traded goals in extra time — for Brazil, from Beatriz in the 90th minute and for Japan, Rika Masuya in the 93rd minute — but Brazil walked away with the 2-1 win.

It’s a bounce back win for Brazil after their 3-1 loss to Australia on Day 1. For Japan, it’s their second-straight loss in the tournament.

 

United States 1 Australia 1

Portland Thorns FC midfielder Lindsey Horan scored in the 90th minute to earn the United States a draw with Australia in Sunday’s second game.

Megan Rapinoe earned the assist with her corner kick service to the far post — one of ten corner kicks in the game for the United States.

Australia took the lead early with a goal in the 22nd minute from Chloe Logarzo following a breakaway run from Lisa De Vanna.

 

 


– Tournament of Nations Match Report –

 

Match: Japan vs. Brazil
Date: July 29, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nations

Venue: Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field; East Hartford, Conn.
Kickoff: 4:15 p.m. ET
Attendance: 13,027
Weather: 81 degrees, mostly sunny

 

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F
JPN                             0          1          1
BRA                             0          2          2

 

BRA – Marta (Raquel)                                                76th minute

BRA – Beatriz (Raquel)                                              90

JPN – Rika Masuya (Moeno Sakaguchi)                   90+3

 

Lineups:

JPN: 1-Sakiko Ikeda; 3-Aya Sameshima (capt.), 8-Mana Iwabuchi (14-Yui Hasegawa, 46), 13-Yuika Sugasawa (11-Mina Tanaka, 58), 15-Moeno Sakaguchi, 16-Rin Sumida (7-Emi Nakajima, 72), 17-Yuka Momiki (19-Rika Masuya, 58), 20-Kumi Yokoyama (9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 73), 22-Risa Shimizu, 23-Aimi Kunitake (2-Maya Doko, 68), 24-Narumi Miura

Subs not used: 18-Ayaka Yamashita, 21-Chika Hirao, 4-Shiori Miyake, 6-Saori Ariyoshi, 12-Hina Sugita

Head coach: Asako Takakura


BRA
: 12-Aline; 3-Daiane (4-Kathellen, 73), 5-Thaisa, 9-Debinha (20-Raquel, 73), 10-Marta (capt.), 16-Beatriz, 17-Andressinha (7-Camila, 46), 18-Thaís (11-Adriana, 46), 19-Joyce (6-Tamires, 46), 21-Mônica, 23-Rayanne (13-Rilany, 82)

Subs not used: 1-Bárbara, 22-Letícia, 2-Millene, 8-Juliana, 14-Poliana, 15-Tayla

Head coach: Oswaldo Alvarez (Vadão)


Stats Summary: JPN / BRA
Shots: 12 / 13
Shots on Goal: 3 / 5
Saves:  3 / 2
Corner Kicks: 4 / 6
Fouls: 5 / 10
Offside: 2 / 3


Misconduct Summary:

BRA – Daiane (caution)                                              71st minute

BRA – Raquel (caution)                                              90+5

Officials: 
Referee: Katja Koroleva (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Felisha Mariscal (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Deleana Quan (USA)
4th Official: Christina Unkel (USA)

 

 


– U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Australia
Date: July 29, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nations
Venue: Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field; East Hartford, Conn.
Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET
Attendance: 21,570
Weather: 81 degrees, sunny

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA                          0 1 1
AUS                          1 0 1

AUS – Chloe Logarzo (Lisa De Vanna)       22nd minute
USA – Lindsey Horan (Megan Rapinoe)     90

Lineups:
USA: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 22-Emily Sonnett (14-Casey Short, 79), 7-Abby Dahlkemper (16-Rose Lavelle, 79), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 19-Crystal Dunn (10-Carli Lloyd, 87); 2-Julie Ertz, 9-Lindsey Horan, 6-Morgan Brian (5-McCall Zerboni, 63); 17-Tobin Heath (23-Christen Press, 74), 13-Alex Morgan (capt.), 15-Megan Rapinoe
Subs not used : 3-Samantha Mewis, 8-Amy Rodriguez, 11-Merritt Mathias, 12-Tierna Davidson, 20-Allie Long, 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Ashlyn Harris
Head coach: Jill Ellis

AUS: 1-Lydia Williams; 4-Clare Polkinghorne, 6-Chloe Logarzo (9-Caitlin Foord, 85), 8-Elise Kellond-Knight (capt.), 10-Emily Van Egmond, 11-Lisa De Vanna (17-Kyah Simon, 58), 13-Tameka Butt, 14-Alanna Kennedy, 16-Hayley Raso (15-Emily Gielnik, 90+5), 20-Sam Kerr (19-Katrina Gorry, 90+1), 21-Ellie Carpenter
Subs not used: 3-Amy Sayer, 5-Mary Fowler, 7-Laura Alleway, 18-Mackenzie Arnold, 22-Larissa Crummer, 23-Alex Chidiac
Head coach: Alen Stajcic

Final Stats Summary: USA / AUS
Shots: 18 / 8
Shots on Goal: 6 / 2
Saves: 1 / 5
Corner Kicks: 10 / 2
Fouls: 9 / 16
Offside: 4 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
AUS – Chloe Logarzo (caution)         37th minute
AUS – Lydia Williams (caution)          57
AUS – Emily Van Egmond (caution)  83

Officials: 
Referee: Miriam Leon (SLV)
Assistant Referee 1: Princess Brown (JAM)
Assistant Referee 2: Elizabeth Aguilar (SLV)
4th Official: Quetzalli Alvarado (MEX)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Julie Ertz

 

Courage vs. Lyon in the ICC final

Courage and Lyon will meet in the inaugural ICC final on Sunday night

North Carolina Courage midfielder Heather O'Reilly (left) and Lyon midfielder Amandine Henry (Photo credit: ICC Women)

Miami, Florida — On Sunday night (9 p.m. ET on ESPN2) at Hard Rock Stadium the NWSL’s first-place North Carolina Courage will meet five-time UEFA Champions Olympique Lyonnais in the first-ever International Champions Cup Women’s Tournament final.

The tournament kicked off on Thursday with the Courage earning a 2-1 win over Paris Saint-Germain and Olympique Lyonnais defeating Manchester City 3-0. PSG and Man City will also play on Sunday for the third-place match (6:15 p.m. ET on NWSLsoccer.com and NWSL app).

The final will feature the current best clubs in their respective leagues. For the Courage, head coach Paul Riley’s side is in first place in the NWSL with a 14-1-4 record and 46 points. While Olympique Lyonnais are in preseason ahead of their season, the squad that made the trip to Miami features five players who were recently named to the FIFA The Best Women’s Player short list (Amandine Henry, Wendie Renard, Lucy Bronze, Ada Hegerberg and Saki Kumagai.)

While neither side has met before, both clubs are aware of what one another’s capabilities are. For the Courage, they know French midfielder Henry all too well. Henry played for 2017 NWSL Champion Portland Thorns FC — who beat the Courage for the title — last season before re-joining Olympique Lyonnais.

“It’s going to be a big challenge for us,” Courage captain Abby Erceg said after training on Friday. “The players that they have are quite exceptional. You’ve got Henry, [Eugénie] Le Sommer — it’s just the lineup that they have is amazing! It’s going to be a big challenge, but I like challenges and I think this team likes challenges. We thrive around them. I’m excited because you play for these moments. You want to play in big stadiums, in big events against the best players in the world.”

If you ask Henry who the best team in the NWSL is, she will without a doubt say Portland, but regardless, the midfielder is excited to play against a team she not too long ago battled it out with in the NWSL Championship.

“I’m excited because it’s a different style of play than the style in Europe. It will be good, but also harder for us because we [just started] our season and they are in season,” Henry said after her team’s victory over Man City on Thursday. “But they have good players and very fast [players]. But, I think if we have possession it will be a good game. I really hope that we win.”

Henry said that she follows the league as closely as she can, but the time difference and jet lag often gets in the way.

“I’m excited because I think [the Courage] are the best team at the moment, but I think Portland is still better,” Henry said, laughing. “No, no, but seriously, [North Carolina] is a great team.”

In June, the Courage acquired the rights to midfielder Heather O’Reilly in a trade with Utah Royals FC. O’Reilly joined the team after spending the 2017 season and the beginning of 2018 playing for Arsenal. O’Reilly said before she joined the Courage, and before she even knew that the NWSL would have a team included in this historic tournament, she wanted in.

“As soon as I saw it announced, I thought that it was so incredibly cool,” O’Reilly said on Saturday. “Due to my experience over at Arsenal for the last year and a half, I was exposed to this whole side of global women’s club football that I didn’t know too much about. So to play Lyon, who is arguably the best women’s club team in the world, will be a great opportunity, a great challenge, and one we’ll be up for.”

O’Reilly never had the chance to play Lyon during her stint overseas, so Sunday will finally be her time to take on several of the world’s best players.

“In terms of world class players, they have a lot in every position,” O’Reilly said. “Le Sommer and Hegerberg up top will be a good opportunity for our backline to be tested against some of the best strikers in the world. And you know, Wendie Renard, their center back is absolutely world class in that position. She’s a physical force and has led France and Lyon for a long time now. She’s someone I’m looking forward to going up against.”

O’Reilly’s eyes lit up when she was asked who she is most excited to take on Sunday.

“Lucy Bronze,” she said. “If I find myself on the same side as her it’s certainty going to be a physical battle. She covers a lot of ground and for a right back she scores a lot of goals, so she’s inspiring in terms of her physical capability, but also in terms of her ability to participate in goal scoring opportunities.”

Lyon are also excited to take on a U.S. team. Ada Hegerberg, who scored and chipped in an assist on Thursday night, is soaking in every moment of this opportunity. “This is my first time in the U.S.,” the Norwegian forward said after the game on Thursday. “I have only ever been to Canada for the World Cup. [Miami] is brilliant. It is just like in the movies. It is ridiculous and I’ve been loving it so far.”

Hegerberg could name a few of the Courage players, naming O’Reilly and Erceg, and said she also pays attention to the NWSL, but like Henry, said the time difference makes it difficult.

“I don’t watch a lot of the games often, because the games are bad timings for us, but it is exciting to play against an American team,” Hegerberg said. “It is a different type of football than what we play in Europe. I’m really happy that we get to play against North Carolina on Sunday.”

Both the Courage and Lyon have already made history by being part of this inaugural women’s tournament, however Sunday will hold another level of prestige when the first winner of the tournament will be crowned.

“More than anything this game is just a really great opportunity to compare these two great clubs that wouldn’t have a chance to do it otherwise,” O’Reilly said. “Everybody likes to say that they have the best league and the best team in the world and this is an opportunity to prove it.”

Courage advance to final of inaugural ICC Women’s Tournament

McDonald, Jenkins score

The Courage celebrate a goal in their win over Paris Saint-Germain at the International Champions Cup. (Photo credit: ICC Women)

Miami, Florida — The North Carolina Courage just keep on winning.

They already have 14 wins in the NWSL this season and they got another big victory on Thursday night at Hard Rock Stadium — this time over a side from Europe, as they beat Paris-Saint Germain 2-1 in the first semifinal of the inaugural Women’s International Champions Cup. The Courage will next face five-time UEFA Champions League winner Olympique Lyonnais in the ICC final on Sunday, July 29, at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

Jess McDonald scored first for the Courage and forward Darian Jenkins, who has yet to score in the NWSL, finished the eventual game winner in the 84th minute.

“I’m ecstatic,” Jenkins said after the game. “We train this stuff a lot at practice. I just kept running and I knew I was going to sit in between the defenders. [Assistant coach Sean Nahas] told me to sit in between the defenders and Lynn [Williams] played the perfect ball.”

“We’re sitting here creating history, which is something that people don’t always have the opportunity to do,” McDonald, who scored the opening goal in the 19th minute, said. “And to top that off we have these fresh players coming in who train with us day in and day out.”

Jenkins has come off the bench for the Courage in 13 NWSL games this season. The Courage picked Jenkins with the No. 7 overall pick in the 2017 NWSL College Draft, but she missed last season because of injury. Her goal on Thursday night — her first in a meaningful game for the Courage — helped her team punch a ticket to the ICC championship game on Sunday.

Head coach Paul Riley recognized the importance of getting players like Jenkins minutes in a tournament like this, especially with six players on international duty for the Tournament of Nations, (Abby Dahlkemper, Crystal Dunn, Merritt Mathias, Samantha Mewis and McCall Zerboni, all representing the United States, and Debinha, for Brazil.)

“Darian, it’s a tough job for her because she’s behind Jess, Lynn, Dunn, who’s obviously away with the national team,” Riley said after the game.

When Jenkins came into the game in the 75th minute, she was clearly up for the test. The score was level at 1-1 and if it stayed tied after 90 minutes, the game would go straight to penalty kicks.

Jenkins’ winner came after 44 minutes locked at 1-1. After the Courage took an early lead, Paris-Saint Germain tied it in the 40th minute when 17-year-old Canadian forward Jordyn Huitema put pressure on the Courage backline. Courage defender Kaleigh Kurtz attempted to clear the ball, but it ended up on the other side of the post to give PSG the equalizer. (Huitema is joining PSG for the tournament, but hasn’t signed a contract and still maintains her college eligibility.)

With the score tied, the second half was a scramble, and neither side could find much of an offensive rhythm. The Courage made several substitutions hoping for a burst of energy in the Miami heat — including Jenkins, who tallied the game-winner just nine minutes after she entered.

“The team energy and chemistry is always there. We’re always working for each other so I knew [a goal] was going to come,” Jenkins said.

Riley called Jenkins’ goal “brilliant” and said, “I thought it was important to play them, blood ’em,” when asked about his decision to play some of his new, younger players.

With the international call-ups, the Courage signed four national team replacement players including Morgan Reid, a defender out of Duke University who the Courage selected in the fourth round of this year’s draft. Reid was one of the recent signings who made her professional debut on the night, entering the game in the 82nd minute and replacing defender Jaelene Hinkle.

“Morgan Reid had that look in her eye that she was going to kill somebody when she was brought on the park,” Riley said. “I think she did really well, equipped herself at left back.”

“I’ve been waiting for awhile for this!” Reid said after the game. “It was so exciting. It was obviously only 15 minutes, but it has been something I’ve been waiting to do my whole life.”

The win for Reid and the other younger players was particularly special, and if anyone gets the significance of this moment it’s NWSL veteran forward, McDonald.

“Their names are also going to be in the history book with ours,” McDonald said.

Next up: the final vs. Lyon on Sunday night.

Olympique Lyonnais earned a 3-0 result over Manchester City on Thursday night with a brace from Eugénie Le Sommer and a goal from Ada Hegerberg. The North Carolina Courage will face Olympique Lyonnais on Sunday, July 29 at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN2 and the third place game between Paris Saint-Germain vs. Manchester City will take place before at 6:15 p.m. ET on NWSLsoccer.com and the NWSL app.

Australia, United States win on Day 1 of the Tournament of Nations

Kerr scores for Australia and Morgan gets a hat trick for the United States

Australia and the United States celebrate during their Tournament of Nations wins. (Photo credit: Brad Smith/isiphotos.com)

Australia and the United States both won on Day 1 of the 2018 Tournament of Nations at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas. It was a day that featured 33 NWSL players seeing minutes between the four teams — Australia, Brazil, Japan and the United States — taking part in the tournament.

The tournament now shifts to Pratt & Whitney Stadium in East Hartford, Connecticut for a doubleheader on Sunday.

 

Australia 3, Brazil 1

Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr scored as Australia beat Brazil 3-1 to open the 2018 Tournament of Nations. It’s a strong start to the tournament for the Matildas, who won the first edition of the four-team tournament last year.

Kerr’s goal came in the 50th minute. Tameka Butt played a through ball and Kerr raced onto the end of it on the right flank. Kerr took a few touches and then hit a high, hard right-footed shot that beat Brazil goalkeeper Bárbara on the near post.

Australia scored the first goal in the 9th minute after an own goal from Orlando Pride defender Poliana. The goal came after a good defensive clearance from Poliana set up the set piece, but Poliana tried to head the corner away and redirected it into her own net.

Australia scored the second goal in the 38th minute on another corner kick as Butt tapped in a misclearance from Brazil following a corner kick from Pride midfielder Emily van Egmond.

Brazil scored in the 79th minute after Pride midfielder Camila played a long ball over the top to her Orlando teammate Marta on the left flank. Marta dribbled towards the box and sent a low pass right along the endline. North Carolina Courage midfielder Debinha tapped it past Seattle Reign FC goalkeeper Lydia Williams for the score.

Camila subbed on in the 61st minute, her first appearance for Brazil since tear her ACL last fall.

Williams came up big in the 85th minute with a kick save to keep Brazil from finding another goal. Marta put on some moves in the box and played a pass right into the middle of the box, but Beatriz’s shot was stopped by Williams.

Portland Thorns FC forward Caitlin Foord, who has yet to be able to take the field for Portland so far this season, subbed on in the 86th minute, making her return to for the Matildas following right lis franc repair.

Australia wore black armbands in the match in honor of Reign defender Steph Catley’s father, who died this week after a battle with cancer. Catley was originally named to the squad but withdrew earlier this week.

Australia will next face the United States on Sunday and Brazil will meet Japan.

 

United States 4, Japan 2

Later Thursday night, Orlando Pride forward Alex Morgan tallied a hat trick and the United States won 4-2 over Japan in their opening game of the 2018 Tournament of Nations. It’s Morgan’s fourth career hat trick and she now has 89 international goals in her career.

Morgan’s first goal came in 18th minute and finished off a quick passing sequence started by Utah Royals FC forward Christen Press. Press found Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe in space on the left side and Rapinoe then played the ball square across the middle of the box for Morgan. The perfectly placed ball found Morgan in between two defenders and she tapped it home for the game’s first goal.

Japan immediately leveled the match just two minutes later on a goal by Mina Tanaka, but Morgan wouldn’t take long to score again.

Her second came just eight minutes after her first, a strong header off a chipped pass from Portland Thorns FC defender Emily Sonnett, who started the game at right back. It’s the first assist of Sonnett’s international career.

Morgan’s third goal came in the 56th minute, after some brilliant individual work on the right flank from Portland Thorns FC forward Tobin Heath.

Morgan now has 16 goals in her last 16 games for the United States.

Rapinoe scored the United States’ final goal of the game in the 66th minute, following a quick give-and-go with Washington Spirit midfielder Rose Lavelle. Rapinoe, of course, followed her goal with a memorable celebration.

Lavelle subbed into the match in the the 64th minute, her first appearance for the USWNT since September 2017 after recovering from a hamstring injury.

Japan added another goal in the 76th minute, on a curling shot from Moeno Sakaguchi that beat Chicago Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher at the far post.

 

The United States will next face Australia on Sunday and Japan will take on Brazil.

 

Full highlights of the USA’s win over Japan:


– Tournament of Nations Match Report –

 

Match: Brazil vs. Australia
Date: July 26, 2018
Competition: Tournament of Nations

Venue: Children’s Mercy Park; Kansas City, Kan.
Kickoff: 3:15 p.m. CT
Attendance: 10,307
Weather: 75 degrees, mostly cloudy

 

Scoring Summary:          1            2            F
BRA                                  0            1            1
AUS                                  2            1            3

 

AUS –  Poliana (Own Goal)                        9th minute

AUS – Tameka Butt                                    38

AUS – Sam Kerr (Tameka Butt)                 50

BRA – Debinha (Marta)                             79

 

Lineups:

BRA: 1-Bárbara; 3-Daiane (4-Kathellen, 82), 5-Thaisa, 6-Tamires (19-Joyce, 75), 9-Debinha, 10-Marta (capt.), 14-Poliana, 16-Beatriz, 17-Andressinha (7-Camila, 62), 18-Thaís (11-Adriana, 54), 21-Mônica

Subs not used: 12-Aline, 22-Letícia, 2-Millene, 8-Juliana, 13-Rilany, 15-Tayla, 20-Raquel

Head coach: Oswaldo Alvarez (Vadão)


AUS
: 1-Lydia Williams (capt.); 4-Clare Polkinghorne, 6-Chloe Logarzo (9-Caitlin Foord, 86), 8-Elise Kellond-Knight, 10-Emily Van Egmond, 13-Tameka Butt (23-Alex Chidiac, 75), 14-Alanna Kennedy, 16-Hayley Raso (11-Lisa De Vanna, 69), 17-Kyah Simon (19-Katrina Gorry, 58), 20-Sam Kerr (5-Mary Fowler, 90+3), 21-Ellie Carpenter

Subs not used: 18-Mackenzie Arnold, 2-Amy Sayer, 7-Laura Alleway, 15-Emily Gielnik, 22-Larissa Crummer,

Head coach: Alen Stajcic


Stats Summary: BRA / AUS
Shots: 12 / 6
Shots on Goal: 4 / 2
Saves: 0 / 3
Corner Kicks: 2 / 5
Fouls: 14 / 14
Offside: 2 / 1

 

Misconduct Summary:

AUS – Kyah Simon (caution)                                   27th minute

AUS – Emily Van Egmond (caution)                       34

AUS – Elise Kellond-Knight (caution)                     54

BRA – Thaisa (caution)                                             86

BRA – Joyce                                                              90+2    

                                                      

Officials: 
Referee: Christina Unkel (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: Jennifer Garner (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Alicia Messer (USA)
4th Official: Karen Abt (USA)


 

– U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. Women’s National Team vs. Japan
Date: July 26, 2018
Competition: 2018 Tournament of Nations
Venue: Children’s Mercy Park; Kansas City, Kansas
Kickoff: 6:15 p.m. CT
Attendance: 18,467 (sellout)
Weather: 80 degrees, sunny

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F 
USA                          2 2 4
JPN                           1 1 2

USA – Alex Morgan (Megan Rapinoe) 18th minute
JPN – Mina Tanaka (Yui Hasegawa) 20
USA – Alex Morgan (Emily Sonnett) 26
USA – Alex Morgan 56
USA – Megan Rapinoe 66
JPN – Moeno Sakaguchi (Rika Masuya) 76

Lineups: 
USA : 1-Alyssa Naeher; 22-Emily Sonnett, 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 12-Tierna Davidson, 19-Crystal Dunn; 2-Julie Ertz (16-Rose Lavelle, 64), 9-Lindsey Horan (3-Samantha Mewis, 74), 6-Morgan Brian (5-McCall Zerboni, 46); 23-Christen Press (17-Tobin Heath, 54), 13-Alex Morgan (capt.) (10-Carli Lloyd, 73), 15-Megan Rapinoe (14-Casey Short, 74)
Subs not used : 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 8-Amy Rodriguez, 11-Merritt Mathias, 20-Allie Long, 21-Adrianna Franch, 24-Harris 
Head coach: Jill Ellis

JPN : 18-Ayaka Yamashita; 3-Aya Sameshima (capt.), 4-Shiori Miyake, 6-Saori Ariyoshi (16-Rin Sumida, 86), 7-Emi Nakajima (9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 59), 8-Mana Iwabuchi (19-Rika Masuya, 60), 11-Mina Tanaka (20-Kumi Yokoyama, 59), 14-Yui Hasegawa (13-Yuika Sugasawa, 67), 15-Moeno Sakaguchi, 22-Risa Shimizu, 24-Narumi Miura
Subs not used: 1-Sakiko Ikeda, 2-Maya Doko, 12-Hina Sugita, 17-Yuka Momiki, 21-Chika Hirao, 23-Aimi Kunitake 
Head coach: Asako Takakura

Final Stats Summary: USA / JPN 
Shots: 15 / 11
Shots on Goal: 7 / 3
Saves: 1 / 3
Corner Kicks: 2 / 1
Fouls: 6 / 3
Offside: 2 / 6

Misconduct Summary:
None

Officials: 
Referee: Carol-Ann Chenard (CAN)
Assistant Referee 1: Chantal Boudreau (CAN)
Assistant Referee 2: Marie-Han Gagnon-Chretien (CAN)
4th Official: Sheena Dickson (CAN)

Budweiser Woman of the Match: Alex Morgan

NWSL joins SheIS leadership group

The NWSL joins the SheIS initiative

On Thursday, the National Women’s Soccer League announced that it is joining the leadership group of SheIS, a women’s sports initiative that focuses on growing awareness and support for women’s sports.

NWSL’s athlete ambassadors Lindsay Agnew, Michelle Betos, Aubrey Bledsoe, Alex Morgan, Kailen Sheridan and Nikki Stanton join NWSL managing director Amanda Duffy in the initiative.

 

 

National Women’s Soccer League news release:

CHICAGO (July 26, 2018) – SheIS announced today that the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), the World Boxing Council, the World Surf League, and the Western Women’s Canadian Football League will join its Collective of sports organizations. It also announced a number of new additions to it’s list of Athlete Ambassadors. The women’s sports initiative, which launched in May, made history by being the first organization to bring together leagues, organizations, athletes, and business leaders from across the men’s and women’s sports world in support of one cause – to grow the awareness and support of women sports.

In a time when every industry is taking a hard look at how women are being treated in the workplace, SheIS and the Collective was formed to create new opportunities for increasing the viewership and attendance of women’s sports at all levels. The new additions to this group join an already strong base of North American sports organizations and individuals, including the WNBA, US Tennis Association, WWE, Canada Basketball, National Women’s Pro Fastpitch League, National Women’s Hockey League, Women’s Pro Lacrosse League, the Canadian Women’s Hockey League, Canada Rugby, and Canada Baseball. All of the supporters are pledging to empower all female athletes, professional and amateur, and encourage growth in fan attendance and viewership.

SheIS Founder, Brenda Andress said, “We are extremely excited to welcome our newest leaders to sit among the SheIS Collective, further cross-pollinating our efforts and embracing the power within our leagues and with their amazing athletes. By strengthening this group, we are showing the sports world that we are ready to up our game and showing everyone that we can have a positive impact on women’s sports.”

Founded in 2017, SheIS fills a noticeable gap in the sports industry, where female athletes may feel marginalized and underrepresented, with a powerful vision to use positivity, respect and support to empower women who choose a career in sports. With the goal of increasing viewership and attendance of women’s sports in North America, as well as participation at the amatuer level, SheIS encourages a cross-pollination of women’s sports, while challenging fans to attend games and use social media to champion women in sports.

“We are pleased to partner with the members of SheIS and look forward to working alongside these organizations to elevate the support and visibility for all women’s sports,” said NWSL Managing Director Amanda Duffy. “Led by our world-class athletes, NWSL strives to inspire current and future generations to be active in sports, and leaders in life. By participating in this initiative, we join the strength of these indomitable leaders working in women’s professional sports to amplify awareness of opportunities at all levels.”

Along with welcoming the new leagues into the organization, SheIS also welcomes a number of new Athlete Ambassadors, including the NWSL athletes such as Lindsay Agnew, Michelle Betos, Aubrey Bledsoe, Alex Morgan, Kailen Sheridan, and Nikki Stanton, and the World Boxing Council Champions Christy Martin, Heather Hardy and Jelena Mrdjenovich, amongst many others. The full list can be found on the SheIS website.

WSL CEO Sophie Goldschmidt said, “WSL is honored to support SheIS as we all look to celebrate all women in sport. Surfing is incredibly lucky to have many iconic, value-led athletes drawn from across the world, from Stephanie Gilmore, chasing an incredible 7th World title, to 16-year-old rookie Caroline Marks, Big Wave Surfer Paige Alms to Bethany Hamilton, and many more. Just this May at our inaugural Founder’s Cup, we saw co-ed teams, often led by women, compete and win in front of sellout crowds. Our women surfers are an inspiration to many.”

The initiative garnered national and international coverage at launch, and continues to gain momentum with the announcement of these new partnerships. Together, they will support the growth of the SheIS Challenge in 2018, which encourages the general public to join league leadership, athletes, and prominent business leaders in and outside of the sports industry, in watching or attending women’s sporting events across North America. By posting to social media channels using #SheISChallenge, and challenging friends, family, and colleagues to go watch or attend women’s sporting events throughout the year, the Collective hopes to build awareness and resources for women’s sports. The sports leagues will also begin hosting SheIS events and running co-branded promotions to help facilitate further opportunities for people to engage with women’s sports.

In addition to the SheIS Challenge, the initiative continues to focus on driving funding into amatuer sports participation through the SheIS Fund. This fund aims to help build the talent pipeline of future professional athletes includes a partnership with Fast & Female, an established North American nonprofit organization founded by Olympic Gold Medalist, Chandra Crawford.

For more information about SheIS, please visit www.sheissport.com.

About SheIS:

Founded in 2017 and launched to the public on May 1, 2018, SheIS was established with a mission to use the power of women’s sports to create a future of, by, and for strong women. It focuses on the positive attributes of sport to acknowledge and elevate women, and celebrates those who are collective powerhouses and unwavering cheerleaders for their fellow athletes at all skill levels. The SheIS Collective includes leaders from every major sport, and represents the first time in history that all of these sports leagues and organizations have stood together in support of one cause. To learn more, visit www.sheissport.com or follow the team on social media @teamsheis.

Player of the Week: Jane Campbell

The Dash goalkeeper earned a shutout in Week 17

Houston Dash goalkeeper Jane Campbell made nine saves vs. the Spirit. (Photo credit: Tony Quinn/isiphotos.com)

Houston Dash goalkeeper Jane Campbell has been voted NWSL Player of the Week for Week 17 of the 2018 season by the NWSL Media Association.

Campbell’s season-high nine saves and clean sheet against the Washington Spirit helped her team earn a 1-0 result in Week 17 and improve to 6-7-5 overall with 23 points. The Dash are now in sixth place in the league standings and six points away from a playoff spot.

Campbell is second in the league in saves, with 64. She has also picked up two shutouts this season. This is the first time Campbell has earned Player of the Week honors.

Campbell had several key stops on the day, with a clean save in the 45th minute to deny Spirit midfielder Estefanía Banini‘s blast from the penalty area, and then a diving punch save in the 81st minute on Spirit forward Ashley Hatch. In 90 minutes played, she also claimed four crosses, including one saving catch, and completed one pass into the final third, according to Opta.

The NWSL Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

Goal of the Week: Toni Pressley

The Orlando Pride defender scored her first goal of the season

Toni Pressley scored the Pride's lone goal in Week 17 play vs. Seattle Reign FC. (Photo credit: Jeremy Reper/isiphotos.com)

Toni Pressley‘s first goal of the season that opened up scoring for the Orlando Pride in the 21st minute vs. Seattle Reign FC has been voted Week 17’s Goal of the Week.

Watch the Week 17 Goal of the Week below and catch up on all of this year’s Goals of the Week on the YouTube playlist.

Save of the Week: Rachel Corsie

Corsie also won NWSL Save of the Week for Week 16

The Utah Royals FC defender has one assist this season. (Photo credit:

Utah Royals FC defender Rachel Corsie‘s sliding block in the 88th minute to prevent a goal from North Carolina Courage forward Lynn Williams was voted Week 17’s NWSL Save of the Week.

Watch her save below and catch up on all of this year’s Saves of the Week on our YouTube playlist.

 

Shortlist announced for 2018’s The Best FIFA Women’s Player, Coach awards

Kerr, Marta, Rapinoe, Henry all nominated for best women's player

(Top row, left to right): Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr and former Portland Thorns FC midfielder Amandine Henry. (Bottom row, left to right): Orlando Pride forward Marta and Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe (Photo credit: isiphotos.com)

FIFA has announced the shortlist for 2018’s The Best FIFA Women’s Player and Coach awards, and both lists feature faces from the NWSL. The winners will be announced on Monday, September 24, in London. The time period considered for the award is August 7, 2017 to May 24, 2018.

For best women’s player, Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr, Orlando Pride forward Marta and Seattle Reign FC forward Megan Rapinoe have all been nominated, as well as former Portland Thorns FC midfielder Amandine Henry, who is now with Olympique Lyon.

Kerr, Marta and Rapinoe were all finalists for the 2017 NWSL MVP award, with Kerr winning the honor as well as the NWSL Golden Boot. Henry scored for the Thorns in their semifinal win, on their way to winning the NWSL title.

For best women’s coach, Portland Thorns FC coach Mark Parsons, who won the 2017 NWSL championship, has been shortlisted.

Fans help decide who will win the 2018 edition of the awards, with a fan vote counting for 25% of the final result. The voting is split evenly between four groups: fans, selected media, national team coaches and national team captains. Voting is already open and closes on August 10. For best women’s player, you can vote here. For best women’s coach, you can vote here.

The full list of nominees for best women’s player: Lucy Bronze (England/Lyon), Pernille Harder (Denmark/Wolfsburg), Ada Hegerberg (Lyon), Amandine Henry (France/Lyon), Sam Kerr (Australia/Chicago Red Stars), Saki Kumagai (Japan/Lyon), Dzsenifer Marozsán (Germany/Lyon), Marta (Brazil/Orlando Pride), Megan Rapinoe (United States/Seattle Reign FC) and Wendie Renard (France/Lyon).

The full list for best coach:

 

Fans who participate select their top three candidates, with their first pick earning five points, the second three points, and the third one point. Fans may only vote once.

The shortlists were put together by a panel of 12 experts, including Mia Hamm, Sissi, Sun Wen and Nadine Keßler.

Seven NWSL players on Brazil’s Tournament of Nations roster

The tournament begins on July 26

Camila and Monica after a game this season. (Photo credit: Roy K. Miller/isiphotos.com)

Seven NWSL players are on the 23-woman roster for Brazil at this year’s Tournament of Nations, which will also feature the United States, Japan and Australia. Brazil will play their first game vs. Australia on Thursday in Kansas City, Missouri.

Four members of the Orlando Pride lead the way: Marta, Camila, Monica and Poliana. They are joined by Thaisa (Sky Blue FC), Debinha (North Carolina Courage) and Andressinha (Portland Thorns FC). (View the full roster)

Camila returns to the roster for Brazil for the first time since tearing her ACL at the end of the regular season last year. She has appeared in four games so far this season for the Pride since making her season debut on July 7.

Australia, Brazil and Japan have all qualified for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The United States will take part in Concacaf’s qualifying tournament in October. All four teams are currently ranked in the top eight teams in the world: United States (No. 1), Japan (No. 6), Brazil (No. 7) and Australia (No. 8).

The Tournament of Nations will only take place in years that don’t have a Women’s World Cup or Olympic tournament — so this will be the last tournament until 2021.


Full Tournament of Nations schedule and broadcast info, if available:

 

Thursday, July 26

Children’s Mercy Park

Kansas City, Kansas

 

Brazil vs. Australia | 4:15 p.m. ET

USA vs. Japan | 7 p.m. ET | FS1


Sunday, July 29

Pratt & Whitney Stadium

East Hartford, Connecticut

 

Japan vs. Brazil | 4:15 p.m. ET

USA vs. Australia | 7 p.m. ET | FS1


Thursday, August 2

Toyota Park

Bridgeview, Illinois

 

Australia vs. Japan | 5:45 p.m. ET

USA vs. Brazil | 8:30 p.m. ET | FS1

 

Week 17 Power Rankings: Courage hold on, Thorns and Reign swap spots

NWSL Power Rankings presented by Cutter

The North Carolina Courage are 14-1-4 overall. (Photo credit:

See where each team falls in the Week 17 edition of the Power Rankings.

 

1

NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE
14-1-4, 46 pts

Change:
Last week: 1

The Courage hold on to the top spot after earning one point in a 0-0 draw vs. Utah Royals FC in Week 17. The Courage clinched home-field advantage in the playoffs and are now 14-1-4 (46 points). Although the draw broke their five-game winning streak that began following their loss to Utah last month, they are still unbeaten in their last six games. The Courage will return to league play on August 5 where they will square off against the third-place Portland Thorns FC.


2

PORTLAND THORNS FC
8-5-5, 29 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 3

The Thorns move up one spot in the power rankings after earning a 2-1 result over Sky Blue FC in Week 17. The win for Portland now pushes them to third-place in the league standings with an 8-5-5 overall record and 29 points. The win also was the third-straight for the Thorns. Portland will gear up for a big test in Week 18 NWSL action when they visit the league-leading North Carolina Courage.


3

SEATTLE REIGN FC
8-4-6, 30 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 2

Seattle moves down one spot in the power rankings this week after playing to a 1-1 draw against the Orlando Pride on Saturday. Although they earned just one point, the Reign held on to second place in the league standings with an 8-4-6 overall record and 30 points. Jodie Taylor’s 70th minute equalizer helped her side stay ahead of the Pride (29 points) and the Thorns (29 points) in the standings — however, only one point separates the three teams now.


4

CHICAGO RED STARS
7-4-7, 28 pts

Change:
Last week: 4

The Red Stars had a bye in Week 17 yet still stay secure in fourth place in the power rankings and sit in fifth place in the league standings with a 7-4-7 overall record and 28 points. The Red Stars return to action this Saturday against Sky Blue FC, for the only NWSL during the international break.


5

ORLANDO PRIDE
8-6-5, 29 pts

Change:
Last week: 5

The Pride picked up one point in Week 17 after playing to a 1-1 draw vs. the Reign on Saturday. The Pride trail the Reign by just one point in the standings and are now 8-6-5 with 29 points. Defender Toni Pressley scored her first goal of the season for the Pride. The Pride will next host Sky Blue FC on August 5, following the international break.


6

HOUSTON DASH
6-7-5, 23 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 7

The Dash move up one spot in the power rankings this week after clinching three points over the Washington Spirit. The Dash are now 6-7-5 with 23 points and moved into sixth place in the standings with the win. The Dash are five points behind the fifth place Red Stars and six points out of a playoff spot. The Dash’s lone goal came from forward Rachel Daly, her seventh of the season.


7

UTAH ROYALS FC
5-6-7, 22 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 6

Utah picked up one point in Week 17, earning a 0-0 draw against the Courage, but are still six points back from a playoff spot. Utah is the only team to not lose to the Courage this season, but still trail them by a big margin with an 5-6-7 record with 22 points. Utah Royals FC will return to action on August 5 when they face the Houston Dash on the road.


8

WASHINGTON SPIRIT
2-12-4, 10 pts

Change:
Last week: 8

The Spirit dropped to 2-12-4 and 10 points after falling to the Dash on Sunday morning. The loss eliminated the Spirit from playoff contention. The Spirit will look for their third win of the season when they visit the Reign following the international break on August 5.


9

SKY BLUE FC
0-13-3, 3 pts

Change:
Last week: 9

Sky Blue FC put up a fight against the Thorns in Week 17, yet dropped another three points and are now officially out of the playoffs. Sky Blue FC are 0-13-3 (3 points) overall and have now been winless in 16 games. Sky Blue will next play the Red Stars on Saturday night.

New test ahead as Courage gear up for the first ICC Women’s Tournament

Courage, PSG, Lyon and Man City all to compete at ICC Tournament

The Courage will face three of the best teams in the world at the ICC Women's Tournament. (Photo credit: Andy Mead/isiphotos.com)

Update (7/24/18): The third-place game of the ICC will be streamed live on NWSLsoccer.com and the NWSL app (July 29 at 6:15 p.m. ET). The final will be broadcast on ESPN2 (July 29 at 9 p.m. ET).

The players of the North Carolina Courage never seem to take their feet off the gas pedal. The Courage sit at the top of the NWSL standings with a 14-1-3 (45 points) overall record and have already earned a spot in the 2018 NWSL postseason.

The Courage are cruising, and while most of the rest of the league takes a week off for the international break, Paul Riley’s squad will be participating in the first women’s International Champions Cup in Miami, Florida.

The Courage will be joined by three of the top teams in the world: Manchester City, Paris-Saint Germain and five-time UEFA Champions League winner Olympique Lyonnais. All of the matches will be played at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami with semifinal matches on July 26 followed by a third-place match and final on July 29.

While several Courage players will be off on international duty thanks to the Tournament of Nations, the team has been buzzing with the excitement for the ICC since their participation was announced.

“This is going in history books! Are you kidding me? Of course we’re excited!” Courage forward Jess McDonald told NWSL Media. McDonald has scored six goals this season and chipped in four assists so far this NWSL regular season, and she’ll be one of the veteran players leading the offense in Miami.

The Courage have gone back to their scoring ways in 2018. They’ve put up 41 goals so far this season, with a goal differential of +27, and have outscored their opponents 17-2 since dropping their only loss of the year. Playing — and better yet, winning — on an international stage is something Courage midfielder McCall Zerboni shows up for. While Zerboni won’t be on the pitch in Miami with her team because of her recent U.S. women’s national team call-up, she spoke for the Courage when she said, “This is the start of something really special.

“I’m really glad that we were chosen to be a part of it. It’s a major honor and it will kind of put us in measurement and on the map in comparison to the other clubs.”

Midfielder Heather O’Reilly, who recently joined the Courage from Arsenal Women, has expressed her excitement about the tournament on social media.

The Courage could meet familiar faces at the tournament, specifically players like Amandine Henry and Nadia Nadim who previously played in the NWSL. Henry, a midfielder with Lyon, and Nadim, a forward with Manchester City, both played for Portland Thorns FC and were a part of their 2017 NWSL Championship-winning side.

Another player in the tournament has some connections to North Carolina – Lyon and English defender Lucy Bronze. Bronze played in North Carolina for the Tar Heels under Anson Dorrance, and won the NCAA tournament in 2009 alongside Courage players Jess McDonald and Merritt Mathias.

While the Courage send off six of their players to the Tournament of Nations to represent the USWNT (Abby Dahlkemper, Mathias, Jaelene Hinkle, Samantha Mewis, Zerboni and Crystal Dunn) the squad will be fully equipped to take on the world’s best clubs.

Forward Lynn Williams has scored eight goals this season for a league second-best. She recently grabbed NWSL Week 16 Player of the Week honors after scoring a hat trick to give the Courage their 14th win of the season, plus clinching a berth to the 2018 NWSL Championship. The front line also has options in McDonald, Kristen Hamilton, who has three goals and four assists this season, and rookie Darian Jenkins, who has subbed in to play 12 games for the Courage this year. Down the field, the depth continues with Denise O’Sullivan consistently showing up and creating chances for her side and the addition of O’Reilly to the squad.

Defensively, Abby Erceg and goalkeepers Katelyn Rowland and Sabrina D’Angelo have led the Courage to eight shutouts and held opposing teams to only 14 goals. Rowland has played the majority of the Courage’s games (12) and has earned four shutouts, made 35 saves and allowed just 11 goals.

Erceg is fourth in the league in successful passes (666) and sixth in the league in clearances (74). The centerback has played every minute of all 18 Courage games this season, tying her for the most minutes played so far this season (1620 minutes). Not to be forgotten, Erceg has also chipped in two goals this year.

Their motto is accurate — there is “No Finish Line” when it comes to the North Carolina Courage. Whether the team is making league history, breaking records individually and as a team, or representing the NWSL on a world stage, there is no end in sight.

The next test? A chance to measure up against the best at the International Champions Cup.


ICC Schedule and broadcast info

Thursday, July 26

North Carolina Courage vs. Paris Saint-Germain (6:15 p.m. ET)

Olympique Lyonnais vs. Manchester City (9 p.m. ET)

Sunday, July 29

Third place game (6:15 p.m. ET on NWSLsoccer.com and the NWSL app)

Final (9 p.m. ET on ESPN2)


On July 24, the Courage announced their official roster for the tournament:

Goalkeepers (2): Sabrina D’Angelo and Katelyn Rowland

Defenders (9): Abby Erceg, Tori Hansen, Jaelene Hinkle, Carlin Hudson, Yuri Kawamura, Kaleigh Kurtz, Morgan Reid, Cari Roccaro and Ryan Williams

Midfielders (6): Julia Aronov, Elizabeth Eddy, Heather O’Reilly, Denise O’Sullivan, Meredith Speck and Sarah Teegarden

Forwards (4): Darian Jenkins, Kristen Hamilton, Jessica McDonald and Lynn Williams

MVP Watch

Ten contenders for the 2018 NWSL MVP trophy

Editor’s Note: This story is the opinion of the writer and doesn’t reflect the views of the NWSL or its clubs.

 

The first four months of the 2018 NWSL season have provided fans with an intense battle between teams vying for a top-four finish and a coveted spot in the league’s post-season playoffs.

On the individual level, the pursuit of glory has been just as intense with a handful of stars separating themselves from the rest of the pack in the chase for league Most Valuable Player honors.

With seven weeks left in the season, here are the top contenders, listed in alphabetical order.

All stats are courtesy of Opta, and there is a key to the terms at the bottom of this story. A deeper dive into the 2018 NWSL league leader stats can be found here.

 

Crystal Dunn

North Carolina Courage (14-1-3, 45 points, 1st place)

17 games, 1448 minutes

7 goals (T-4th), 5 assists (T-1st)

41 chances created (1st)

30 tackles won (T-13th)

64 total shots (including blocked shots) (4th)

 

Whether she’s playing up top or in the midfield, Crystal Dunn finds a way to make a difference in games.

Returning to the NWSL this season after a year abroad, the dynamic and versatile Dunn is near the top of the league charts in goals scored with seven and tied for the league lead in assists with five. She’s also helped North Carolina become nearly unbeatable, providing another pacey and talented offensive threat to an already stacked lineup.

If Dunn were to win the MVP award, it would be her second, after earning NWSL MVP honors in 2015 while playing for the Washington Spirit. This season, she has earned Team of the Month honors in March, April, May, and June, and was the NWSL Player of the Month in June.

She also leads the league in chances created and is currently tied for the league lead in points with 12.

 


Lindsey Horan

Portland Thorns FC (7-5-5, 26 points, 5th place)

16 games, 1440 minutes

9 goals (T-1st), 2 assists

217 duels won (1st), 99 aerials won (1st), 32 tackles won (T-10th)

168 recoveries (9th), 1340 total touches (1st)

49 shots (7th), 23 shots on target (6th)

Lindsey Horan’s knack for finding space on set pieces and then punishing her opponents has become so frequent this season that a running joke, “Who’s marking Horan?”, has emerged in some NWSL circles.

A deep-lying midfielder, Horan is key to Portland’s success as she pulls the strings for the Thorns, winning the ball in her own end and then helping her team start the attack by working the ball forward. Currently, she ranks ninth in the league in recoveries, and first in both duels and aerials won.

What’s even more impressive, however, is Horan’s ability to put the ball in the back of the net, especially considering how much work she does in the Thorns’ half of the field.

Her penchant for getting forward at just the right moment to provide a potent scoring punch has provided Portland with three goals in the run of play, in addition to the six she’s tallied on set pieces.

Her nine goals this season put her tied at the top of the league leaderboard — a remarkable accomplishment for a player at her position — and have led to her being named to the NWSL’s Team of the Month in March, May, and June.

 


Sofia Huerta

Houston Dash (5-7-5, 20 points, 7th place)

16 games, 1414 minutes

5 goals (T-11th), 3 assists (T-11th)

23 chances created (T-11th)

41 shots (10th), 18 shots on target (T-9th)

Dealing with a spate of early season injuries, the Chicago Red Stars had to get creative in how to use Sofia Huerta this spring. Normally deployed as a winger or forward, Huerta shone as a center midfielder for the club early in the season on her way to Player of the Month honors in April.

After a mid-season trade to Houston, Huerta has continued her strong form as a center midfielder — albeit a bit higher as the Dash’s No. 10 — scoring in her first two matches with her new team. She now has five goals and three assists on the season.

 


Sam Kerr

Chicago Red Stars (7-4-7, 28 points, 4th place)

13 games, 1170 minutes

9 goals (T-1st), 2 assists

28 chances created (T-5th)

69 shots (3rd), 32 shots on target (2nd)

47 aerials won (9th)

Sam Kerr brought her trademark backflip to Chicago after a trade from Sky Blue this winter. And while she hasn’t been able to perform the stunt this season due to a shoulder injury, it hasn’t slowed her goal-scoring rate in 2018.

Currently, Kerr sits tied at the top of the goal-scoring charts with nine tallies this season — a feat even more impressive considering she missed the first month of the season while on international duty with Australia. She also tallied her 50th career goal earlier this month and is the league’s all-time leading goal scorer.

Kerr is fifth in the league in chances created and ninth in aerial wins. This past weekend, she also brought back her tendency to score late and in dramatic fashion, tallying the game-winner for Chicago in the 87th minute against Seattle.

The forward won the MVP award in 2017, as well as the Golden Boot, and while no one in NWSL history has ever won either award in back-to-back seasons, she’s certainly on pace to contend for both honors again this year.

 


Yuki Nagasato

Chicago Red Stars (7-4-7, 28 points, 4th place)

16 games, 1146 minutes

4 goals (T-13th), 5 assists (T-1st)

27 chances created (T-7)

21 fouls won (T-13th)

Some unfortunate injuries prevented fans from seeing the best of Yuki Nagasato in 2017 after she arrived in Chicago late last season. This year, she also missed a few games early on due to a hamstring strain, but made up for lost time upon returning to action and earned Team of the Month honors in June.

Nagasato currently has four goals and five assists, and sits eighth in the league in chances created. The Japanese international has quickly become a favorite of her new strike partner Sam Kerr, assisting on five of Kerr’s goals this season, including an impressively placed header that beat Seattle’s entire defense this past weekend.

With six games left in the Red Stars’ 2018 campaign, Nagasato’s distribution may prove to be the key factor getting Chicago back to the playoffs for a fourth straight season.

 


Megan Rapinoe

Seattle Reign FC (8-4-5, 29 points, 2nd place)

13 games, 1066 minutes

7 goals (T-4th), 4 assists (T-4th)

28 chances created (T-5th)

95 duels won (T-14th)

75 total shots (2nd), 33 shots on target (1st)

Long one of the flashiest players in the NWSL, Megan Rapinoe has remained in top form in 2018. She currently has seven goals and four assists, putting her near the top of the charts in goals, assists and total points this season, despite playing only 12 games.

Developing play for Seattle Reign FC on the wing, Rapinoe’s pin-point delivery from the flank and on set pieces has her sitting sixth in chances created. Along with her ability to go 1 v. 1 against any player in the league and score from distance, she can beat a defense in a myriad of ways.

 

 

Rapinoe earned Player of the Month honors in March, as well as Player of the Week honors twice, and her play this season has her among the top players in the league heading into the final stretch.

 


Becky Sauerbrunn

Utah Royals FC (5-6-6, 21 points, 6th place)

14 games, 1260 minutes

84.8% passing accuracy (1st, min. 400 passes)

40 interceptions (9th)

13 blocks (6th), 65 clearances (10th)

While it would be unusual for a defender to win the award — it hasn’t yet happened in five NWSL seasons — Becky Sauerbrunn has as good a case as anyone. Some fans have even joked that the league’s Defender of the Year trophy should be named after her, as at one point she had won the award in three consecutive seasons.

With Utah Royals FC fielding a somewhat makeshift backline in their inaugural season, Sauerbrunn has kept things together, and the team has only conceded 18 goals in 17 games — third best in the NWSL. The defender currently ranks sixth in blocked shots and 10th in both clearances and interceptions. With the Utah’s offense struggling, it’s their defense that has kept the team in the thick of the playoff race late into the campaign.

In 2018, Sauerbrunn has been named to the NWSL’s Team of the Month in March, April, May and June, currently leads the league in passing accuracy, and is proving once again to be among the top players in the league.

 


Christine Sinclair

Portland Thorns FC (7-5-5, 26 points, 5th place)

17 games, 1530 minutes

7 goals (T-4th), 5 assists (T-1st)

107 duels won (9th)

15 shots on goal (T-13th)

Surprisingly enough, Christine Sinclair, a veteran of all six NWSL seasons and a player with one of the most impressive resumes in the history of the women’s game, has never won the MVP award.

That could finally change in 2018. So far, she’s among the league leaders in goals with seven and tied for the lead in assists with five. That leaves Sinclair on 12 points for the season, tied for tops in the NWSL. She also ranks fourth in aerials won, ninth in duels won and ninth in chances created.

In her career, Sinclair is third in all-time goals with 38 and, this season, has won Team of the Month honors in May and June.

With Portland in the thick of the playoff hunt and defending their championship from last season, a late season push from Sinclair could help the 35-year-old win her first NWSL MVP award.

 


Lynn Williams

North Carolina Courage (14-1-3, 45 points, 1st place)

15 games, 1190 minutes

8 goals (3rd), 4 assists (T-4th)

76 total shots (1st), 28 shots on goal (3rd)

The mercurial Lynn Williams has exploded of late, including a hat trick in last weekend’s game against Sky Blue FC. Williams has also proven her importance in the past, winning the 2016 Golden Boot and MVP awards for the Western New York Flash.

So far in 2018, Williams has eight goals and four assists, tying her for top of the league in total points and her explosive pace up top helps open up space for her North Carolina teammates in the midfield.

Although she got off to a slow start this season, Williams has been known to score in bunches and could easily shoot to the top spot in that category with a strong performance in the Courage’s final six games.

 


McCall Zerboni

North Carolina Courage (14-1-3, 45 points, 1st place)

17 games, 1530 minutes

3 goals, 1 assist

56 tackles won (1st), 62 interceptions (1st)

182 duels won (2nd), 44 aerials won (T-10th)

188 recoveries (4th), 1245 total touches (3rd)

The current iron woman of the NWSL, McCall Zerboni became the first player in league history to surpass 10,000 minutes when she hit the career mark in a match earlier this summer. In fact, Zerboni is so durable that the last time she didn’t go 90 minutes after starting a match was in September of last year.

The linchpin of North Carolina’s unusual and dynamic midfield set-up, Zerboni has led the Courage to an amazing 14-1-3 record in 2018, an incredible 16 points above their nearest competition. She also leads the league in interceptions and tackles and earned Team of the Month honors in April, May, and June.

Over the past few seasons, the veteran has helped shepherd a North Carolina squad from a group of feisty youngsters into the most dominant team in the league. Currently, she ranks second in duels won, fourth in recoveries and 10th in aerials won.


Opta Event Definitions

From Opta’s site:

Chances Created

Assists plus key passes (final pass or pass/shot leading to the recipient of the ball having an attempt at goal without scoring.

Tackles

A tackle is defined as where a player connects with the ball in ground challenge where she successfully takes the ball away from the woman in possession. 

  • The tackled player must clearly be in possession of the ball before the tackle is made

A Tackle Won is deemed to be where the tackler or one of her team-mates regains possession as a result of the challenge, or that the ball goes out of play and is “safe.”

A Tackle Lost is where a tackle is made but the ball goes to an opposition player.

Clearance

This is a defensive action where a player kicks the ball away from his own goal with no intended recipient of the ball.

Block

This is where a player blocks a shot from an opposing player.

Interception

This is where a player intentionally intercepts a pass by moving into the line of the intended ball.

Recovery

This is where a player wins back the ball when it has gone loose or where the ball has been played directly to her.

Foul conceded

A foul conceded is defined as any infringement that is penalized as foul play by a referee. Offsides are not given as a foul conceded.

Foul won

A foul won is defined as where a player wins a free-kick or penalty for their team after being fouled by an opposing player.

Touches

A sum of all events where a player touches the ball, so excludes things like Aerial challenge lost or Challenge lost. 

Duels

A duel is an 50-50 contest between two players of opposing sides in the match. For every Duel Won there is a corresponding Duel Lost depending on the outcome of the Duel.

Aerial Challenge won – Aerial Challenge lost. 

This is where two players challenge in the air against each other. The player that wins the ball is deemed to have won the duel. When more than two players are involved the player closest to the duel winner is given an Aerial Duel lost.

League Leaders

NWSL league leaders in a number of statistical categories, as of July 19, 2018

A look at the 2018 league leaders. (Photo credit: Bryan Byerly/isiphotos.com)

NWSL league leaders in a number of statistical categories, as of July 19, 2018.

All stats are courtesy of Opta, and there is a key to each term at the bottom of this story. 

Games Played

1) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 18
1) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 18
1) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 18
1) Abby Erceg | NC | 18
5) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 17
5) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 17
5) Alyssa Naeher | CHI | 17
5) Taylor Smith | WAS | 17
5) Christine Sinclair | POR | 17
5) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 17
5) Kristen Hamilton | NC | 17
5) Amber Brooks | HOU | 17
5) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 17
5) Merritt Mathias | NC | 17
5) Katie Naughton | CHI | 17
5) Jessica McDonald | NC | 17
5) McCall Zerboni | NC | 17
5) Desiree Scott | UTA | 17
5) Crystal Dunn | NC | 17
5) Ashlyn Harris | ORL | 17
5) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 17
5) Jane Campbell | HOU | 17
5) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 17
5) Rachel Daly | HOU | 17
5) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 17
5) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 17
5) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 17


Minutes Played

1) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 1620
1) Abby Erceg | NC | 1620
3) Rachel Daly | HOU | 1530
3) Amber Brooks | HOU | 1530
3) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 1530
3) McCall Zerboni | NC | 1530
3) Desiree Scott | UTA | 1530
3) Christine Sinclair | POR | 1530
3) Alyssa Naeher | CHI | 1530
3) Jane Campbell | HOU | 1530
3) Ashlyn Harris | ORL | 1530
12) Taylor Smith | WAS | 1524
13) Katie Naughton | CHI | 1519
14) Merritt Mathias | NC | 1511
15) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 1505
16) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 1500
17) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 1485
18) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 1460
19) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 1458
20) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 1455
21) Crystal Dunn | NC | 1448
22) Aubrey Bledsoe | WAS | 1440
22) Lindsey Horan | POR | 1440
22) Allie Long | SEA | 1440
25) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 1425
26) Abby Smith | UTA | 1422
27) Whitney Church | WAS | 1420
28) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 1419
29) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 1414
30) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 1408


Goals

1) Sam Kerr | CHI | 9
1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 9
3) Lynn Williams | NC | 8
4) Crystal Dunn | NC | 7
4) Christine Sinclair | POR | 7
4) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 7
7) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 6
7) Debinha | NC | 6
7) Jessica McDonald | NC | 6
7) Rachel Daly | HOU | 6
11) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 5
11) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 5
13) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 4
13) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 4
13) Rachel Hill | ORL | 4
13) Chioma Ubogagu | ORL | 4
13) Kealia Ohai | HOU | 4
13) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 4
13) Alex Morgan | ORL | 4
20) Tobin Heath | POR | 3
20) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 3
20) McCall Zerboni | NC | 3
20) Samantha Mewis | NC | 3
20) Savannah McCaskill | NJ | 3
20) Katie Stengel | UTA | 3
20) Merritt Mathias | NC | 3
20) Marta | ORL | 3
20) Francisca Ordega | WAS | 3
20) Allie Long | SEA | 3
20) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 3


Assists

1) Christine Sinclair | POR | 5
1) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 5
1) Crystal Dunn | NC | 5
4) Christine Nairn | ORL | 4
4) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 4
4) Jessica McDonald | NC | 4
4) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 4
4) Kristen Hamilton | NC | 4
4) Lynn Williams | NC | 4
4) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 4
11) Steph Catley | SEA | 3
11) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 3
11) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 3
11) Tobin Heath | POR | 3
11) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 3
11) Marta | ORL | 3
11) Thembi Kgatlana | HOU | 3
18) Ali Krieger | ORL | 2
18) Nahomi Kawasumi | SEA | 2
18) Meghan Klingenberg | POR | 2
18) Katie Johnson | NJ | 2
18) Alex Morgan | ORL | 2
18) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 2
18) Kealia Ohai | HOU | 2
18) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 2
18) Sam Kerr | CHI | 2
18) Nichelle Prince | HOU | 2
18) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 2
18) Samantha Mewis | NC | 2
18) Debinha | NC | 2
18) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 2
18) Sarah Killion | NJ | 2
18) Lindsey Horan | POR | 2


Total Shots (including blocked shots)

1) Lynn Williams | NC | 76
2) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 75
3) Sam Kerr | CHI | 69
4) Crystal Dunn | NC | 64
5) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 57
6) Jessica McDonald | NC | 53
7) Lindsey Horan | POR | 49
8) Debinha | NC | 47
9) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 45
10) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 41
11) Alex Morgan | ORL | 40
12) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 39
13) Rachel Daly | HOU | 38
14) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 37
15) Christine Sinclair | POR | 35
16) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 31
17) Samantha Mewis | NC | 27
18) Francisca Ordega | WAS | 26
19) Marta | ORL | 26
19) Amy Rodriguez | UTA | 26
21) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 25
21) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 25
21) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 25
24) Tobin Heath | POR | 24
24) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 24
24) Chioma Ubogagu | ORL | 24
24) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 24
28) Kyah Simon | HOU | 23
28) Katrina Gorry | UTA | 23
30) Mallory Pugh | WAS | 22
30) Shea Groom | NJ | 22


Shots on Target

1) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 33
2) Sam Kerr | CHI | 32
3) Lynn Williams | NC | 28
4) Crystal Dunn | NC | 26
5) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 25
6) Lindsey Horan | POR | 23
7) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 22
8) Jessica McDonald | NC | 21
9) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 18
9) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 18
11) Debinha | NC | 17
11) Alex Morgan | ORL | 17
13) Christine Sinclair | POR | 15
13) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 15
15) Rachel Daly | HOU | 13
15) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 13
17) Shea Groom | NJ | 11
17) Marta | ORL | 11
17) Tobin Heath | POR | 11
20) Rachel Hill | ORL | 10
21) Amy Rodriguez | UTA | 9
21) Imani Dorsey | NJ | 9
21) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 9
21) Katrina Gorry | UTA | 9
21) Kristen Hamilton | NC | 9
21) Samnatha Mewis | NC | 9
27) Mallory Pugh | WAS | 8
27) Francisca Ordega | WAS | 8
27) Katie Johnson | NJ | 8
27) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 8


Total Touches

1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 1340
2) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 1321
3) McCall Zerboni | NC | 1245
4) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 1184
5) Allie Long | SEA | 1160
6) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 1119
7) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 1113
8) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 1083
9) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 1031
10) Abby Erceg | NC | 1021
11) Merritt Mathias | NC | 1010
12) Becca Moros | UTA | 1002
13) Taylor Smith | WAS | 987
14) Desiree Scott | UTA | 977
15) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 976
15) Rachel Daly | HOU | 976
17) Taylor Comeau | CHI/HOU | 967
18) Sarah Killion | NJ | 960
18) Meghan Klingenberg | POR | 960
20) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 958
21) Katie Naughton | CHI | 944
22) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 930
23) Ali Krieger | ORL | 900
24) Crystal Dunn | NC | 897
25) Becky Sauerbrunn | UTA | 892
26) Christine Sinclair | POR | 880
27) Katherine Reynolds | POR | 878
27) Lauren Barnes | SEA | 878
28) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 859
29) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 854
30) Amber Brooks | HOU | 853


Chances Created

1) Crystal Dunn | NC | 41
2) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 40
3) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 38
4) Debinha | NC | 30
5) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 28
5) Sam Kerr | CHI | 28
7) Jessica McDonald | NC | 27
7) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 27
9) Christine Sinclair | POR | 26
9) Marta | ORL | 26
11) Merritt Mathias | NC | 23
11) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 23
13) Rachel Daly | HOU | 22
13) Christine Nairn | ORL | 22
13) Meghan Klingenberg | POR | 22
13) Savannah McCaskill | NJ | 22
17) Abby Dahlkemper | NC | 21
18) Lynn Williams | NC | 20
18) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 20
20) McCall Zerboni | NC | 19
20) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 19
20) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 19
20) Lindsey Horan | POR | 19
24) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 18
24) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 18
24) Alex Morgan | ORL | 18
24) Katrina Gorry | UTA | 18
24) Steph Catley | SEA | 18
29) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 17
29) Katie Johnson | NJ | 17
29) Kristie Mewis | HOU | 17

Clearances

1) Estelle Johnson | WAS | 93
2) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 87
2) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 87
4) Katherine Reynolds | POR | 77
4) Emily Sonnett | POR | 77
6) Abby Erceg | NC | 74
7) Amber Brooks | HOU | 73
8) Whitney Church | WAS | 72
9) Katie Naughton | CHI | 66
10) Becky Sauerbrunn | UTA | 65
11) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 59
12) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 54
13) Samantha Johnson | CHI/UTA | 52
14) Megan Oyster | SEA | 50
14) Kelli Hubly | POR | 50
14) Emily Menges | POR | 50
17) Abby Dahlkemper | NC | 49
17) Lauren Barnes | SEA | 49
19) Taylor Smith | WAS | 46
20) Mandy Freeman | NJ | 45
20) Ali Krieger | ORL | 45
22) Lindsey Horan | POR | 42
23) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 41
24) Taylor Comeau | CHI/HOU | 40
24) Kristen McNabb | SEA | 40
24) Domi Richardson | NJ | 40
24) Allysha Chapman | NC/HOU | 40
28) Allie Long | SEA | 39
29) Rebekah Stott | NJ | 38
30) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 37


Interceptions

1) McCall Zerboni | NC | 62
2) Amber Brooks | HOU | 61
3) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 46
4) Desiree Scott | UTA | 45
5) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 44
5) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 44
7) Theresa Nielsen | SEA | 43
8) Carson Pickett | ORL | 41
9) Becky Sauerbrunn | UTA | 40
10) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 39
10) Abby Erceg | NC | 39
12) Becca Moros | UTA | 38
12) Estelle Johnson | WAS | 38
14) Whitney Church | WAS | 37
14) Katherine Reynolds | POR | 37
14) Sarah Killion | NJ | 37
14) Poliana | ORL | 37
18) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 36
19) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 35
19) Katie Bowen | UTA | 35
21) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 34
22) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 33
22) Allie Long | SEA | 33
24) Ali Krieger | ORL | 32
24) Megan Oyster | SEA | 32
26) Katie Naughton | CHI | 31
26) Lauren Barnes | SEA | 31
28) Celeste Boureille | POR | 30
29) Mandy Freeman | NJ | 29
29) Brooke Elby | UTA/CHI | 29


Blocks

1) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 22
2) Estelle Johnson | WAS | 18
3) Mônica | ORL | 17
4) Amber Brooks | HOU | 16
5) Whitney Church | WAS | 15
6) Becky Sauerbrunn | UTA | 13
7) Megan Oyster | SEA | 12
8) Katie Naughton | CHI | 11
8) Ali Krieger | ORL | 11
10) Allie Long | SEA | 10
10) Katherine Reynolds | POR | 10
12) Abby Erceg | NC | 9
12) Mandy Freeman | NJ | 9
12) Erica Skroski | NJ | 9
15) Abby Dahlkemper | NC | 8
15) Emily Sonnett | POR | 8
15) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 8
15) Lauren Barnes | SEA | 8
15) Christina Gibbons | NJ | 8
20) Carson Pickett | ORL | 7
20) Kristen McNabb | SEA | 7
20) Samantha Johnson | CHI/UTA | 7
23) Christine Sinclair | POR | 6
23) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 6
23) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 6
23) Sarah Killion | NJ | 6
23) Kelli Hubly | POR | 6
23) Julie Ertz | CHI | 6
29) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 5
29) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 5
29) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 5
29) Domi Richardson | NJ | 5
29) Rumi Utsugi | SEA | 5
29) Rebecca Quinn | WAS | 5
29) Jess Fishlock | SEA | 5
29) Rebekah Stott | NJ | 5


Recoveries

1) Aubrey Bledsoe | WAS | 219
2) Jane Campbell | HOU | 203
3) Alyssa Naeher | CHI | 199
4) McCall Zerboni | NC | 188
5) Abby Smith | UTA | 185
6) Ashlyn Harris | ORL | 170
6) Kailen Sheridan | NJ | 170
8) Allie Long | SEA | 169
9) Lindsey Horan | POR | 168
10) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 161
11) Desiree Scott | UTA | 148
12) Sarah Killion | NJ | 144
13) Abby Erceg | NC | 138
14) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 136
15) Katelyn Rowland | NC | 134
16) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 133
17) Taylor Comeau | CHI/HOU | 128
18) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 125
18) Amber Brooks | HOU | 125
20) Katie Naughton | CHI | 124
21) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 120
22) Crystal Dunn | NC | 116
23) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 116
24) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 114
25) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 113
26) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 111
27) Emily Sonnett | POR | 110
28) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 109
29) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 108
30) Taylor Smith | WAS | 107


Tackles Won

1) McCall Zerboni | NC | 56
2) Becca Moros | UTA | 40
3) Rumi Utsugi | SEA | 39
4) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 35
4) Sarah Killion | NJ | 35
6) Taylor Smith | WAS | 34
7) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 33
7) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 33
7) Francisca Ordega | WAS | 33
10) Desiree Scott | UTA | 32
10) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 32
10) Lindsey Horan | POR | 32
13) Crystal Dunn | NC | 30
13) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 30
15) Amber Brooks | HOU | 29
16) Theresa Nielsen | SEA | 28
17) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 27
17) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 27
19) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 26
19) Kristie Mewis | HOU | 26
21) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 25
22) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 24
23) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 23
23) Midge Purce | POR | 23
25) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 22
25) Merritt Mathias | NC | 22
25) Haley Hanson | HOU | 22
25) Christina Gibbons | NJ | 22
29) Allie Long | SEA | 21
29) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 21
29) Kelli Hubly | POR | 21


Duels Won

1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 217
2) McCall Zerboni | NC | 182
3) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 146
4) Allie Long | SEA | 139
5) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 134
6) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 121
7) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 111
8) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 108
9) Christine Sinclair | POR | 107
10) Rachel Daly | HOU | 101
10) Crystal Dunn | NC | 101
12) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 97
13) Kristie Mewis | HOU | 96
14) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 95
14) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 95
16) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 94
16) Becca Moros | UTA | 94
18) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 93
19) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 91
20) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 90
21) Taylor Smith | WAS | 88
21) Katie Naughton | CHI | 88
21) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 88
24) Abby Erceg | NC | 87
24) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 87
24) Sam Kerr | CHI | 87
27) Taylor Comeau | CHI/HOU | 86
28) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 85
28) Sarah Killion | NJ | 85
29) Amber Brooks | HOU | 83
29) Rumi Utsugi | SEA | 83


Aerials Won

1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 99
2) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 87
3) Allie Long | SEA | 67
4) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 65
5) Christine Sinclair | POR | 63
6) Abby Erceg | NC | 58
7) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 55
8) Jessica McDonald | NC | 54
9) Sam Kerr | CHI | 47
10) McCall Zerboni | NC | 44
10) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 44
12) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 42
12) Sam Mewis | NC | 42
14) Katie Naughton | CHI | 41
14) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 41
16) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 40
17) Rachel Daly | HOU | 36
17) Lynn Williams | NC | 36
19) Tori Huster | WAS | 33
19) Alex Morgan | ORL | 33
21) Emily van Egmond | ORL | 32
21) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 32
23) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 31
24) Megan Oyster | SEA | 30
25) Amber Brooks | HOU | 29
25) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 29
27) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 28
27) Ali Krieger | ORL | 28
29) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 26
30) Katie Stengel | UTA | 25
30) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 25
30) Haley Hanson | HOU | 25
30) Julie Ertz | CHI | 25

 


 

Tackles

1) McCall Zerboni | NC | 82
2) Becca Moros | UTA | 52
3) Lindsey Horan | POR | 50
3) Rumi Utsugi | SEA | 50
5) Sarah Killion | NJ | 49
6) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 48
7) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 47
7) Theresa Nielsen | SEA | 47
9) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 45
10) Kristie Mewis | HOU | 44
10) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 44
12) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 43
13) Taylor Smith | WAS | 42
14) Amber Brooks | HOU | 40
14) Desiree Scott | UTA | 40
14) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 40
17) Midge Purce | POR | 39
18) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 38
18) Franscisca Ordega | WAS | 38
20) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 37
20) Crystal Dunn | NC | 37
20) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 37
23) Allie Long | SEA | 36
24) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 35
25) Katie Naughton | CHI | 33
25) Meghan Klingenberg | POR | 33
27) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 32
27) Kelli Hubly | POR | 32
29) Katrina Gorry | UTA | 31
29) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 31


Duels

1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 361
2) McCall Zerboni | NC | 312
3) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 269
4) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 268
5) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 242
6) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 235
7) Allie Long | SEA | 233
8) Crystal Dunn | NC | 228
9) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 214
10) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 213
11) Rachel Daly | HOU | 211
12) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 201
13) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 193
14) Christine Sinclair | POR | 191
15) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 187
16) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 186
17) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 184
18) Debinha | NC | 183
19) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 177
20) Lynn Williams | NC | 175
21) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 174
22) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 173
22) Francisca Ordega | WAS | 173
22) Sarah Killion | NJ | 173
25) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 171
25) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 171
27) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 167
28) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 164
29) Rumi Utsugi | SEA | 162
30) Desiree Scott | UTA | 155


Aerials

1) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 143
2) Lindsey Horan | POR | 135
3) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 130
4) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 112
5) Allie Long | SEA | 103
6) Christine Sinclair | POR | 101
7) Jessica McDonald | NC | 97
8) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 89
9) Abby Erceg | NC | 87
10) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 86
11) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 85
12) Rachel Daly | HOU | 77
13) Sam Kerr | CHI | 76
14) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 75
15) Lynn Williams | NC | 74
15) McCall Zerboni | NC | 74
17) Tori Huster | WAS | 73
18) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 72
19) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 70
20) Katie Naughton | CHI | 67
21) Samantha Mewis | NC | 64
22) Alex Morgan | ORL | 62
23) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 61
24) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 60
25) Katie Stengel | UTA | 59
26) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 58
27) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 57
28) Emily van Egmond | ORL | 51
29) Amber Brooks | HOU | 51
30) Sarah Killion | NJ | 48


Successful Crosses/Corners

1) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 40
2) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 38
3) Abby Dahlkemper | NC | 27
4) Meghan Klingenberg | POR | 25
5) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 25
6) Marta | ORL | 19
7) Merritt Mathias | NC | 17
8) Tobin Heath | POR | 16
9) Sarah Killion | NJ | 15
9) Christine Nairn | ORL | 15
11) Taylor Smith | WAS | 14
12) Whitney Church | WAS | 13
12) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 13
14) Theresa Nielsen | SEA | 12
14) Steph Catley | SEA | 12
16) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 11
16) Debinha | NC | 11
18) Katrina Gorry | UTA | 10
18) Savannah McCaskill | NJ | 10
20) Nahomi Kawasumi | SEA | 9
20) Jessica McDonald | NC | 9
20) Kristie Mewis | HOU | 9
23) Crystal Dunn | NC | 8
23) Rachel Daly | HOU | 8
23) Carson Pickett | ORL | 8
26) Rachel Hill | ORL | 7
26) Midge Purce | POR | 7
26) Sam Kerr | CHI | 7
26) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 7
26) Mallory Pugh | WAS | 7


Passing Accuracy (min. 400 pass attempts)

1) Becky Sauerbrunn | UTA | 84.8% | 704 passes
2) Allie Long | SEA | 83.71% | 896
3) Mônica | ORL | 82.25% | 552
4) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 82.2% | 927
5) Desiree Scott | UTA | 81.75% | 756
6) Abby Erceg | NC | 81.39% | 822
7) Erica Skroski | NJ | 81.07% | 486
8) Sarah Killion | NJ | 80.43% | 705
9) Samantha Johnson | CHI/UTA | 79.35% | 586
10) Abby Dahlkemper | NC | 78.56% | 653
11) Kristen McNabb | SEA | 78.15% | 421
12) Emily Sonnett | POR | 77.98% | 645
13) Amber Brooks | HOU | 77.26% | 585
14) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 77.15% | 766
15) Janine van Wyk | HOU | 77.1% | 524
16) Estelle Johnson | WAS | 76.95% | 603
17) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 76.91% | 550
18) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 76.81% | 733
19) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 76.78% | 521
20) Linda Motlhalo | HOU | 76.42% | 424
21) Celeste Boureille | POR | 76.14% | 482
22) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 76.1% | 774
23) Ali Krieger | ORL | 75.87% | 605
24) Katie Naughton | CHI | 75.14% | 716
25) McCall Zerboni | NC | 75.12% | 864
26) Steph Catley | ORL | 75.11% | 446
27) Estefanía Banini | WAS | 75.06% | 405
28) Megan Oyster | SEA | 74.74% | 677
29) Diana Matheson | 74.61% | 453
30) Lindsey Horan | POR | 74.6% | 929


Total Passes

1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 929
2) Rachel Corsie | UTA | 927
3) Allie Long | SEA | 896
4) McCall Zerboni | NC | 864
5) Abby Erceg | NC | 822
6) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 793
7) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 774
8) Shelina Zadorsky | ORL | 766
9) Desiree Scott | UTA | 756
10) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 733
11) Katie Naughton | CHI | 716
12) Lauren Barnes | SEA | 710
13) Sarah Killion | NJ | 705
14) Becky Sauerbrunn | UTA | 704
15) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 704
16) Megan Oyster | SEA | 677
17) Alyssa Naeher | CHI | 676
18) Christine Sinclair | POR | 655
19) Abby Dahlkemper | NC | 653
20) Emily Sonnett | POR | 645
21) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 642
22) Jaelene Hinkle | NC | 639
22) Whitney Church | WAS | 639
24) Arin Gilliland | CHI | 628
25) Katherine Reynolds | POR | 627
26) Becca Moros | UTA | 610
27) Jane Campbell | HOU | 608
28) Rumi Utsugi | SEA | 607
29) Ali Krieger | ORL | 605
30) Estelle Johnson | WAS | 603


Fouls Conceded

1) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 37
2) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 32
2) McCall Zerboni | NC | 32
4) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 30
5) Lindsey Horan | POR | 29
6) Danielle Colaprico | CHI | 26
7) Allie Long | SEA | 24
8) Fransica Ordega | WAS | 23
9) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 20
10) Denise O’Sullivan | NC | 19
10) Dani Weatherholt | ORL | 19
10) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 19
10) Merritt Mathias | NC | 19
10) Samantha Johnson | CHI/UTA | 19
15) Megan Rapinoe | SEA | 18
15) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 18
17) Theresa Nielsen | SEA | 17
17) Rachel Daly | HOU | 17
17) Mallory Pugh | WAS | 17
17) Shea Groom | NJ | 17
21) Jodie Taylor | SEA | 16
21) Elizabeth Addo | SEA | 16
21) Alex Morgan | ORL | 16
21) Ana-Maria Crnogorčević | POR | 16
21) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 16
21) Chioma Ubogagu | ORL | 16
27) Katrina Gorry | UTA | 15
27) Jess Fishlock | SEA | 15
27) Celeste Boureille | POR | 15
27) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 15
27) Emily van Egmond | ORL | 15


Fouls Won

1) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 48
2) McCall Zerboni | NC | 33
3) Taylor Comeau | CHI/HOU | 30
3) Lindsey Horan | POR | 30
5) Rachel Daly | HOU | 29
6) Allie Long | SEA | 26
7) Andressinha | POR | 25
8) Alanna Kennedy | ORL | 23
9) Savannah McCaskill | NJ | 22
10) Merritt Mathias | NC | 22
10) Meggie Dougherty Howard | WAS | 22
10) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 22
13) Andi Sullivan | WAS | 21
13) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 21
15) Estefanía Banini | WAS | 20
15) Linda Motlhalo | HOU | 20
15) Ashley Hatch | WAS | 20
18) Sofia Huerta | CHI/HOU | 19
18) Caprice Dydasco | WAS | 19
18) Jess Fishlock | SEA | 19
21) Kristie Mewis | HOU | 18
21) Shea Groom | NJ | 18
23) Crystal Dunn | NC | 17
23) Alex Morgan | ORL | 17
23) Elizabeth Addo | SEA | 17
23) Tobin Heath | POR | 17
27) Sydney Leroux | ORL | 16
28) Taylor Smith | WAS | 15
28) Debinha | NC | 15
28) Marta | ORL | 15
28) Beverly Yanez | SEA | 15

 


Yellow Cards

1) Lindsey Horan | POR | 5
1) Samantha Johnson | CHI/UTA | 5
3) Rachel Daly | HOU | 4
3) Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir | UTA | 4
5) Meggie Dougherty Howard | WAS | 3
5) Francisca Ordega | WAS | 3
5) Carli Lloyd | NJ | 3
5) Yuki Nagasato | CHI | 3
5) Kristen Hamilton | NC | 3
5) Nikki Stanton | CHI | 3
5) Alyssa Mautz | CHI | 3
29 with 2 yellow cards


Red Cards

1) Marta | ORL | 1


 

Opta Event Definitions

From Opta’s site:

Chances Created

Assists plus key passes (final pass or pass/shot leading to the recipient of the ball having an attempt at goal without scoring.)

Tackles

A tackle is defined as where a player connects with the ball in ground challenge where she successfully takes the ball away from the woman in possession. 

  • The tackled player must clearly be in possession of the ball before the tackle is made

A Tackle Won is deemed to be where the tackler or one of her team-mates regains possession as a result of the challenge, or that the ball goes out of play and is “safe.”

A Tackle Lost is where a tackle is made but the ball goes to an opposition player.

Clearance

This is a defensive action where a player kicks the ball away from his own goal with no intended recipient of the ball.

Block

This is where a player blocks a shot from an opposing player.

Interception

This is where a player intentionally intercepts a pass by moving into the line of the intended ball.

Recovery

This is where a player wins back the ball when it has gone loose or where the ball has been played directly to her.

Foul conceded

A foul conceded is defined as any infringement that is penalized as foul play by a referee. Offsides are not given as a foul conceded.

Foul won

A foul won is defined as where a player wins a free-kick or penalty for their team after being fouled by an opposing player.

Touches

A sum of all events where a player touches the ball, so excludes things like Aerial challenge lost or Challenge lost. 

Duels

A duel is an 50-50 contest between two players of opposing sides in the match, including aerial duels. For every Duel Won there is a corresponding Duel Lost depending on the outcome of the Duel.

Aerial Duel won – Aerial Duel lost

This is where two players challenge in the air against each other. The player that wins the ball is deemed to have won the duel. When more than two players are involved the player closest to the duel winner is given an Aerial Duel lost.

Twenty-four NWSL players on USWNT training camp roster ahead of Tournament of Nations

The 2018 Tournament of Nations begins on July 26

Twenty-four NWSL players have been called into training camp for the U.S. women’s national team ahead of next week’s Tournament of Nations. Overall, 25 players have been called into camp, with Stanford defender Tierna Davidson’s joining the 24 NWSL players.

All players will report on July 20 for several training camp days before the final 23-woman roster is named ahead of their first game on July 26 at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas, vs. Japan.

After this weekend’s games on July 20/21, the NWSL will mostly be on break until August 5, though the Chicago Red Stars and Sky Blue FC will meet on July 28. The full NWSL slate resumes on Sunday, August 5, with four games.

Japan and Australia have already released their rosters for the tournament.


U.S. Women’s National Team Roster by Position; Caps/Goals

GOALKEEPERS (3): Adrianna Franch (Portland Thorns FC; 0/0), Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride; 16/0), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars; 29/0)

DEFENDERS (7): Abby Dahlkemper (North Carolina Courage; 19/0), Tierna Davidson (Stanford; 8/0), Jaelene Hinkle (North Carolina Courage; 8/0), Merritt Mathias (North Carolina Courage; 1/0), Becky Sauerbrunn (Utah Royals FC; 139/0), Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars; 21/0), Emily Sonnett (Portland Thorns FC; 17/0)

MIDFIELDERS (8): Morgan Brian (Chicago Red Stars; 75/6), Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars; 61/15), Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC; 51/5), Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit; 8/2), Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC; 254/100), Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage; 36/7), Allie Long (Seattle Reign FC; 39/6), McCall Zerboni (North Carolina Courage Courage; 2/0)

FORWARDS (7): Crystal Dunn (North Carolina Courage; 64/23), Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC; 133/19), Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride; 142/86), Kealia Ohai (Houston Dash; 3/1), Christen Press (Utah Royals FC; 100/44), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC; 137/37), Amy Rodriguez (Utah Royals FC; 131/30)


The Tournament of Nations will only take place in years that don’t have a Women’s World Cup or Olympic tournament — so this will be the last tournament until 2021.

Full Tournament of Nations schedule and broadcast info, if available:

 

Thursday, July 26

Children’s Mercy Park

Kansas City, Kansas

 

Brazil vs. Australia | 4:15 p.m. ET

USA vs. Japan | 7 p.m. ET | FS1


Sunday, July 29

Pratt & Whitney Stadium

East Hartford, Connecticut

 

Japan vs. Brazil | 4:15 p.m. ET

USA vs. Australia | 7 p.m. ET | FS1


Thursday, August 2

Toyota Park

Bridgeview, Illinois

 

Australia vs. Japan | 5:45 p.m. ET

USA vs. Brazil | 8:30 p.m. ET | FS1

 

Japan, Australia name rosters for 2018 Tournament of Nations

The tournament begins on July 26

(Left to right) Seattle Reign FC's Nahomi Kawasumi, Houston Dash's Kyah Simon and Seattle Reign FC's Rumi Utsugi. (Photo credit: Wilf Thorne.isiphotos.com)

Japan and Australia have released their rosters for the 2018 Tournament of Nations and there will be plenty of NWSL players in action.

For Japan, Seattle Reign FC’s Rumi Utsugi and Nahomi Kawasumi have been named to the squad. They’ll join the team on July 23 in Denver, per the official roster release. (View the full roster)

For Australia, 11 NWSL players are on the squad: Ellie Carpenter (Portland Thorns FC), Steph Catley (Seattle Reign FC), Caitlin Foord (Portland Thorns FC), Katrina Gorry (Utah Royals FC), Alanna Kennedy (Orlando Pride), Sam Kerr (Chicago Red Stars), Clare Polkinghorne (Houston Dash), Hayley Raso (Portland Thorns FC), Kyah Simon (Houston Dash), Emily van Egmond (Orlando Pride) and Lydia Williams (Seattle Reign FC). (View the full roster)

In their roster release, the Matildas said that the team will assemble in Kansas on Monday, July 23, ahead of their first game vs. Brazil on July 26.

Foord has yet to play for Portland Thorns FC this season as she has been out with a right lis franc repair. The Oregonian’s Jamie Goldberg reported on Tuesday that Foord could see her first minutes of the season on the road vs. Sky Blue FC on Saturday. Update — on Tuesday evening, Australia announced that 15-year-old Mary Fowler has been added to the roster. Head coach Alen Stajcic said Fowler was added to the roster because Foord would not appear in games during the tournament.  

Last year’s Tournament of Nations featured 34 players across all four teams (Australia, Japan, Brazil and the United States).

After this weekend’s games on July 20/21, the NWSL will mostly be on break until August 5, though the Chicago Red Stars and Sky Blue FC will meet on July 28. The full NWSL slate resumes on Sunday, August 5, with four games.

Australia, Brazil and Japan have all qualified for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The United States will take part in Concacaf’s qualifying tournament in October. All four teams are currently ranked in the top eight teams in the world: United States (No. 1), Japan (No. 6), Brazil (No. 7) and Australia (No. 8).

The Tournament of Nations will only take place in years that don’t have a Women’s World Cup or Olympic tournament — so this will be the last tournament until 2021.

Full Tournament of Nations schedule and broadcast info, if available:

 

Thursday, July 26

Children’s Mercy Park

Kansas City, Kansas

 

Brazil vs. Australia | 4:15 p.m. ET

USA vs. Japan | 7 p.m. ET | FS1


Sunday, July 29

Pratt & Whitney Stadium

East Hartford, Connecticut

 

Japan vs. Brazil | 4:15 p.m. ET

USA vs. Australia | 7 p.m. ET | FS1


Thursday, August 2

Toyota Park

Bridgeview, Illinois

 

Australia vs. Japan | 5:45 p.m. ET

USA vs. Brazil | 8:30 p.m. ET | FS1

 

Player of the Week: Lynn Williams

The Courage forward scored a hat trick in Week 16

Lynn Williams is second in the league in scoring with eight goals. (Photo credit: Howard C. Smith/isiphotos.com)

Lynn Williams has been voted Player of the Week for Week 16 of the 2018 season by the NWSL Media Association.

The North Carolina Courage (14-1-3, 45 points) clinched a playoff spot thanks to forward Lynn Williams’ hat trick performance against Sky Blue FC to conclude Week 16 action. The Courage went 2-0-0 in Week 16 with a 2-0 win over the Washington Spirit on Wednesday and then a 4-0 win over Sky Blue FC on Saturday.

Williams is now second in the league in goals with eight this season.

Williams took 21 shots, eight on target, and made two key passes on 91 touches in Week 16. Williams is first in the league in shots taken at 60 and has recorded 28 on target. This is the second time in Williams’ NWSL career that she has been honored as NWSL Player of the Week.

All three of Williams’ goals came in the second half. Her first came in the 56th minute on an assist from Kristen Hamilton. Williams hit it one time into the right corner. Her second came in the 72nd minute when Debinha played a ball over the top of Sky Blue’s backline. Williams read the ball over and made a few collecting touches before beating Sky Blue goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan with a shot to the left corner. Williams sealed the game off in the 89th minute when she picked off a pass back and buried it to make it 4-0.

 

The NWSL Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

Week 16 Power Rankings: Courage, Reign, Thorns take top three spots

NWSL Power Rankings presented by Cutter

Cary, North Carolina - Wednesday July 11, 2018: North Carolina Courage vs Washington Spirit at Sahlenís Stadium at WakeMed Soccer Park.

See where each team falls in the Week 16 edition of the Power Rankings.

 

1

NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE
14-1-3, 45 pts

Change:
Last week: 1

Week 16 started with the Courage earning their 13th win of the season after defeating the Spirit 2-0 on Wednesday, and concluded with a 4-0 win over Sky Blue FC on Saturday and a playoff berth. Lynn Williams scored a hat trick in the Courage’s 14th win of the season. The Courage are now 14-1-3 on the year with 45 points and became the first team to clinch a spot in the 2018 NWSL Playoffs. The Courage are also 16 points clear of the second-place Seattle Reign FC. If the Reign lose next week and the Courage win, they can have the NWSL Shield claimed before August. Since suffering their only loss of the season, 1-0 to Utah Royals FC, the Courage are on a five-game winning streak and have outscored their opponents 17-2.


2

SEATTLE REIGN FC
8-4-5, 29 pts

Change:
Last week: 2

Seattle holds the second spot in the Power Rankings and the standings after going 1-1-0 in Week 16 action. The Reign started the week flying after Megan Rapinoe scored on a header in the 54th minute to earn her side a 1-0 result over Utah Royals FC. The Reign dropped their second match of the week to Chicago on a 87th minute goal from Sam Kerr. The Reign are 8-4-5 with 29 points and will meet the Orlando Pride, who are just one point behind them (8-6-4 28 points) in the league standings, on Saturday.


3

PORTLAND THORNS FC
7-5-5, 26 pts

Change:
Last week: 3

Lindsey Horan scored a brace to lead the Thorns to a 3-1 win over the Houston Dash on Sunday night. Horan now has nine goals on the season and is tied with Chicago Red Stars forward Sam Kerr for the league-lead. The Thorns are in fifth place in the standings at 7-5-5 overall with 26 points. With the three points, the Thorns are now just two points behind the Pride and Red Stars, who are tied at 28 points and sitting in the last two playoff positions. The Thorns have a game in hand over those two sides and will look for their third-straight win on Saturday when they play Sky Blue FC.


4

CHICAGO RED STARS
7-4-7, 28 pts

Change: ▲ 1
Last week: 5

Sam Kerr scored in the 87th minute, for her ninth goal of the season to give the Red Stars a 1-0 home win over Seattle Reign FC on Saturday. With the win, the Red Stars improve to 7-4-7 and 28 points in fourth place. This was the Red Stars second-straight win and will look to make it three-in-a-row when they return to action the following week vs. Sky Blue FC.


5

ORLANDO PRIDE
8-6-4, 28 pts

Change: ▼ 2
Last week: 3

The Pride fell to the Houston Dash 3-1 to open up their Week 16 play and Marta was issued a red card at the very end of the match — but the Pride bounced back on Saturday, beating Utah Royals FC 2-1. With the 1-1-0 week, the Pride remain in third place in the league standings at 8-6-4 with 28 points. Kristen Edmonds scored her first goal of the season for the game-winner against Utah. It will be a No. 2 vs. No. 3 match-up in Week 17 as the Pride host Seattle Reign FC on Saturday.


6

UTAH ROYALS FC
5-6-6, 21 pts

Change:
Last week: 6

Utah has now lost three-straight after dropping both of their Week 16 games. Utah first fell 1-0 to the Reign on Wednesday and then dropped three points to the Pride on Saturday. Utah are now 5-6-6 with 21 points in sixth place. Utah has a game in hand, but sit seven points behind the Red Stars and Pride who are both tied with 28 points.


7

HOUSTON DASH
5-7-5, 20 pts

Change:
Last week: 7

The Dash earned a 3-1 win over the Orlando Pride on Wednesday and then dropped their second match of the week on Sunday falling to the Thorns 3-1. The Dash are 5-7-5 with 20 points and sit in seventh place. The Dash are eight points away from a playoff position and will hit the road in Week 17 to face the eighth-place Washington Spirit.


8

WASHINGTON SPIRIT
2-11-4, 10 pts

Change:
Last week: 8

The Spirit dropped their only match of the week, falling to the Courage 2-0 on Wednesday fortheir fourth-straight loss. They are winless in their last eight matches and sit in eighth place in the league standings at 2-11-4 and 10 points. The Spirit have a chance to snap their winning drought when they face the seventh-place Houston Dash on Saturday.


9

SKY BLUE FC
0-12-3, 3 pts

Change:
Last week: 9

Sky Blue FC fell to the league-leading North Carolina Courage in Week 16 and are now winless in 15 consecutive games. Sky Blue remain in last place in the league standings at 0-12-3 and three points. Sky Blue will next host Portland Thorns FC on Saturday.

Arin Gilliland injury update

Gilliland was injured on Saturday night

Red Stars defender Arin Gilliland in action this season. (Photo credit: Daniel Bartel/isiphotos.com)

On Sunday morning, the Chicago Red Stars issued an update on the status of defender Arin Gilliland, who was injured on Saturday night vs. Seattle Reign FC. Later in the day, Gilliland tweeted as well.

The Red Stars said that all x-rays came back normal for Gilliland, who later tweeted, “All is well here in Chicago!”

The team said in a statement: “During the Red Stars home game on Saturday, July 14, Arin Gilliland left the match in the 38th minute and was immediately transferred by ambulance to the local hospital for evaluation of a cervical spine injury. Following the tests, all x-rays came back normal. At this time, she is currently resting and will be reevaluated by a team doctor.”

Gilliland’s tweet:

 

 

Player of the Week: Sam Kerr

The Chicago Red Stars forward scored a hat trick in Week 15

Sam Kerr has a league-leading eight goals this season. (Photo credit: Howard C. Smith/isiphotos.com)

Sam Kerr has been voted Player of the Week for Week 15 of the 2018 season by the NWSL Media Association.

In Week 15, the Chicago Red Stars forward became the first NWSL player to score 50 goals.

In Chicago’s second game of the week, Kerr scored a hat trick (scoring goal number 49, 50, and 51 in her NWSL career) to lead her team to a 3-1 victory over Sky Blue FC. With the three-goal performance, Kerr became the first NWSL player to score three career hat tricks, all of which happened at Yurcak Field. Kerr’s hat trick against her former team also gave her the league lead in goals this season, with eight.

Kerr and the Red Stars went 1-1-0 in Week 15, falling to the league-leading North Carolina Courage on Wednesday and then bouncing back to defeat Sky Blue on Saturday. In the two games, Kerr combined for 16 shots, four key passes, and three goals. Her standout performance came against Sky Blue, where she finished with 10 shots (six on target) and connected three key passes on 58 touches.

It is the sixth time Kerr has been honored as the NWSL Player of the Week.

Kerr’s first goal on Saturday night came in the 40th minute when Red Stars goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher played a long service over Sky Blue FC’s backline into forward Alyssa Mautz. Mautz served a ball towards the top of the box to Kerr, who settled it and finished in the lower left corner for the 1-0 lead.

Her record-breaking 50th career goal came just after the first half in the 46th minute. Yuki Nagasato played Kerr over the top from midfield and Kerr collected it and finished at the far post for the 2-0 lead.

In the 63rd minute, Kerr finished her third of the night when Nagasato played her over the top of Sky Blue’s backline down the middle and Kerr finished it in the left corner.

 

The NWSL Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

Save of the Week: Adrianna Franch

The Thorns goalkeeper made three saves in Week 15

Adrianna Franch earned her first clean sheet of the season. (Photo credit: Craig Mitchelldyer/isiphotos.com)

Portland Thorns FC goalkeeper Adrianna Franch‘s leaping grab in the 57th minute to save Utah Royals FC midfielder Katrina Gorrys shot was was voted Week 15’s NWSL Save of the Week.

Watch her save below and catch up on all of this year’s Saves of the Week on our YouTube playlist.

Diana Matheson suspended one game

Pride assistant coach Khano Smith has been issued an undisclosed fine

(Photo credit: Bryan Byerly/isiphotos.com)

Utah Royals FC midfielder Diana Matheson has been suspended for one game by the NWSL Disciplinary Committee, the league announced Tuesday.

The league said in a statement: “The NWSL Disciplinary Committee announced today that it has suspended Utah Royals FC midfielder Diana Matheson for one game for endangering the safety of an opponent that was determined to be a major game misconduct in an incident involving Portland Thorns FC defender Midge Purce in the 45th minute of Utah’s match against Portland on July 6. Matheson will serve the suspension during the Royals FC’s next match on July 11 vs. Seattle Reign FC.”

Matheson was issued a yellow card by referee Farhad Dadkho for a late challenge on Purce near the end of the first half. Purce left the game with an ankle injury suffered on the play.

The NWSL also announced that Orlando Pride assistant coach Khano Smith has been issued an undisclosed fine, in addition to the automatic one-game suspension, after being ejected during Saturday’s game. Smith was ejected by referee Danielle Chesky after the Pride had a goal disallowed due to a foul called in the Pride’s 2-1 win over the Washington Spirit.

The league said in a statement: “The NWSL Disciplinary Committee has issued an undisclosed fine to Orlando Pride assistant coach Khano Smith in addition to the automatic one-game suspension for being dismissed by the referee for inappropriate behavior and language towards officials during the 77th minute of Orlando’s match against Washington Spirit on July 7. Smith will serve the suspension during the Pride’s next match on July 11 vs. Houston Dash.”

Week 15 Power Rankings: Courage and Reign stay in the top spots

NWSL Power Rankings presented by Cutter

The North Carolina Courage won their 12th game of the season on Wednesday night. (Photo credit: Andy Mead/isiphotos.com)

See where each team falls in the Week 15 edition of the Power Rankings.

1

NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE
12-1-3, 39 pts

Change:
Last week: 1

There were fireworks, however unsurprisingly, on July 4 as the North Carolina Courage took care of business in a dominant 4-1 win over the Chicago Red Stars. The Courage are now 12-1-3 overall with 39 points and are continuing to pull well ahead of everyone else in the league. Up next, the Courage will host the bottom two teams in the standings in Week 16, with the eighth-place Washington Spirit on Wednesday and last-place Sky Blue FC on Saturday.


2

SEATTLE REIGN FC
7-3-5, 26 pts

Change:
Last week: 2

Seattle Reign FC secured second place in the league standings and the Power Rankings after earning a come-from-behind 3-1 win over the Houston Dash in Week 15. Megan Rapinoe had herself a night, scoring and dishing out two assists. The Reign are 7-3-5 overall with 26 points and will next host Utah Royals FC on Wednesday. On Saturday, they will hit the road to Toyota Park to face the Chicago Red Stars.


3 (tie) 

ORLANDO PRIDE
7-5-4, 25 pts

Change: ▲ 3
Last week: 6

The Orlando Pride shift up three spots in the Power Rankings and stay in playoff position after a Week 15 performance to remember. Marta scored the game-winner in the 86th minute to beat the Washington Spirit 2-1. The Pride are now 7-5-4 with 25 points — just one point behind the second-place Reign in the standings. This win also snapped their stretch of two-straight losses. The Pride will look to keep the wins coming this week when they visit the Houston Dash on Wednesday and then Utah Royals FC on Saturday.


3 (tie)

PORTLAND THORNS FC
6-5-5, 23 pts

Change: ▲ 2
Last week: 5

The Thorns excelled in Week 15 as three players all recorded a goal and an assist in their 4-0 win at home over Utah Royals FC. Tobin HeathLindsey Horan and Ana Crnogorčević all scored and earned an assist. Goalkeeper Adrianna Franch also recorded her first clean sheet on the year. The Thorns bounced back this week after falling in Week 14 to the Reign and earning just one point against Sky Blue FC the week before. They are now 6-5-5 overall with 23 points and will look to get above the playoff line when they next host the Houston Dash on Sunday. They are just two points out of a playoff spot, but have a game in hand over the fourth place Red Stars.


5

CHICAGO RED STARS
6-4-7, 25 pts

Change: ▼ 1
Last week: 4

The Red Stars had a tough go on Wednesday, falling to the Courage 4-1, but they bounced back on Saturday, defeating Sky Blue FC 3-1. Sam Kerr had a record-breaking performance, scoring a hat trick and becoming the first NWSL player to score 50 goals — and adding No. 51 shortly after. Kerr has now taken over the league lead in goals, with eight on the season. The Red Stars are 6-4-7 overall with 25 points. They currently hold the fourth and final playoff spot, though they have played more games than Portland and Utah, who sit two and four points behind them, respectively. The Red Stars will host Seattle Reign FC on Saturday in Week 16. 


6

UTAH ROYALS FC
5-4-6, 21 pts

Change: ▼ 3
Last week: 3

Utah Royals FC drop two spots this week in the Power Rankings after falling to the Thorns 4-0 in Week 15. Utah are now sixth place in the league standings with a 5-4-6 overall record and 21 points, four points back of the Red Stars for the final playoff spot — but with two games in hand. Before Friday night, Utah had never allowed more than two goals in a game. Utah will look to bounce back in Week 16 when they visit Seattle Reign FC on Wednesday and host the Pride on Saturday.


7

HOUSTON DASH
4-6-5, 17 pts

Change:
Last week: 7

Despite scoring first against Seattle Reign FC in the Week 15 finale, the Dash dropped all three points on the road. Dash defender Amber Brooks scored their only goal of the night in their 3-1 loss. The Dash are in seventh place in the standings with a 4-6-5 record and 17 points. They will look to get back to winning ways when they host the Orlando Pride on Wednesday and then pay a visit to Providence Park to face the Thorns on Sunday.


8

WASHINGTON SPIRIT
2-10-4, 10 pts

Change:
Last week: 8

Ashley Hatch broke Washington’s five-game goalless streak, however her lone goal wasn’t enough on Saturday as the Pride defeated them 2-1. The Spirit will be back in action on Wednesday night with a difficult test on the road against the first-place North Carolina Courage. The Spirit are in eighth place in the standings at 2-10-4 overall and 10 points.


9

SKY BLUE FC
0-11-3, 3 pts

Change:
Last week: 9

Sky Blue FC now hold the record for the longest winless streak in NWSL history at 14 games after falling to the Red Stars 3-1 on Saturday and they have not held a lead at any point this season. Rookie forward Imani Dorsey scored her first professional goal and the only goal for the home side against the Red Stars on Saturday night. Sky Blue remain in last place in the standings at 0-11-3 and three points. Sky Blue are up for a difficult task on Saturday when they host the first-place North Carolina Courage.

June Team of the Month

The June Team of the Month presented by Cutter

Featuring research by Cassidy Gabriel.

North Carolina Courage forward Crystal Dunn, the June Player of the Month, and Utah Royals FC defender Becky Sauerbrunn lead the way on the June Team of the Month, the fourth-straight time they’ve earned the honor this season. They are joined by two three-time honorees: Courage midfielder McCall Zerboni (April, May, June) and Portland Thorns FC midfielder Lindsey Horan (March, May, June).

The first-place North Carolina Courage (12-1-3, 39 points) have the most players on the roster, with four. Dunn and Zerboni are joined by defenders Abby Erceg and Merritt Mathias.

The June Team of the Month was selected by the NWSL Media Association. The team lines up in a 4-3-3 formation.

GK: Alyssa Naeher, Chicago Red Stars

Alyssa Naeher conceded just one goal in two appearances in June and made six saves as the Red Stars went 1-0-1 in those two games. She earned one clean sheet and posted a 0.33 GAA in June.


D: Becca Moros, Utah Royals FC

Becca Moros appeared in all five games for Utah Royals FC last month, as Utah went 3-1-1. Moros created three chances from her outside back position. Defensively, she earned 11 clearances recorded nine interceptions, and won 11 tackles and 28 duels.


D: Abby Erceg, North Carolina Courage

Once again, Abby Erceg played every minute of all four Courage games in June, and she remains the only North Carolina player to play every minute this season. As the Courage went 2-1-1 and conceded three goals in June, Erceg made eight clearances, 10 interceptions and four blocks. She also won 10 aerial duels. It’s the second straight appearance on the Team of the Month for Erceg.


D: Becky Sauerbrunn, Utah Royals FC

Becky Sauerbrunn makes the NWSL Team of the Month for the fourth straight time. She was at her best in Utah’s upset of North Carolina, making 14 clearances, five interceptions and three blocks. She also won four tackles and eight duels in the match. On the month, Sauerbrunn had 27 clearances, 13 interceptions, five blocks, nine tackles won and 20 duels won. Sauerbrunn finished third in Player of the Month voting.


D: Merritt Mathias, North Carolina Courage

Merritt Mathias scored twice in three games for the Courage in June. Defensively, she recorded eight clearances, three interceptions, six tackles won and 11 duels won in her 270 minutes for the Courage.


M: Lindsey Horan, Portland Thorns FC

It’s Lindsey Horan’s third appearance on the Team of the Month (March, April, June). Horan made three appearances for the Thorns in June, playing 270 minutes. Horan made things happen on offense — she scored twice and took nine shots (four on goal), while recording four chances created. Defensively, she won 36 total duels, 17 aerial duels and three tackles. She also had six clearances and one interception while taking 247 total touches.


M: Yuki Nagasato, Chicago Red Stars

Yuki Nagasato led the way on offense for Chicago in June. She scored twice in three games for the Red Stars and had 10 total shots, five shots on goal and six chances created. She also won 19 duels in 270 minutes as the Red Stars went 2-0-1 in the month. Nagasato finished second in Player of the Month voting.


M: McCall Zerboni, North Carolina Courage

McCall Zerboni makes the Team of the Month roster for the third straight month. Zerboni played all 90 minutes in three June games, while holding down the midfield defensively for the Courage. On 241 total touches, she won 16 tackles, 35 total duels and seven aerial duels. She also had 12 interceptions, seven clearances and two chances created.


F: Kealia Ohai, Houston Dash

Kealia Ohai played 283 minutes as the Dash went 1-1-1 in June. She was efficient, scoring two goals in just two shots on goal — including a long-distance strike that won Week 14 Goal of the Week honors. She also had three chances created and won 17 duels.


F: Christine Sinclair, Portland Thorns FC

Christine Sinclair played every minute for the Thorns in June, as she has done all season — one of just two Thorns to do so. She scored a goal and two assists in four games. She also created 11 chances for the Thorns — seven of which game in Portland’s 1-1 draw with Sky Blue FC. She also made her presence known on defense with eight clearances, five tackles won, 25 total duels won and 14 aerial duels won.


F: Crystal Dunn, North Carolina Courage

Crystal Dunn earned June Player of the Month honors after scoring two goals and an assist in three games for the Courage. In 270 minutes, she had 13 total shots, nine shots on goal and eight chances created. She also had six interceptions, six tackles won and 17 duels won, on 183 touches. Dunn joins Sauerbrunn as the only player to appear on the Team of the Month every month this season. 


 

The NWSL Team of the Month is selected each month of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.

June Player of the Month: Crystal Dunn

The Courage forward scored two goals in June

Crystal Dunn is second in the league in goals scored. (Photo credit: isiphotos.com/Jeremy Reper)

North Carolina Courage forward Crystal Dunn has been voted June Player of the Month by the NWSL Media Association.

Dunn scored two goals and created eight chances to lead the Courage to a 2-1-1 record in June. She finished the month with 13 shots, nine shots on goal, six tackles won, six interceptions and eight chances created on 183 touches.

Most recently Dunn picked up Week 13 NWSL Player of the Week honors after scoring a brace and chipping in an assist in the Courage’s 4-1 win over Seattle Reign FC on June 23. This is the second time in her career to be honored as the NWSL Player of the Month. She was recognized for the first time in August 2015.

Dunn’s first goal in June came in the 33rd minute when Courage forward Lynn Williams found her at the top of the box. Dunn settled the ball just outside the box then struck it to extend the Courage’s lead to 2-1 over the Reign. Her second goal of the night came in the 70th minute after Williams’ slotted her through into space and she shot it with her left foot to seal the Courage’s 4-1 victory.

Dunn has scored seven goals this season which is a league second-best. The forward also has made four assists on the year.

Chicago Red Stars forward Yuki Nagasato finished second in Player of the Month voting. Utah Royals FC defender Becky Sauerbrunn was third.

The NWSL Player of the Month is selected each month of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.