(Aug. 5, 2015) – The host Portland Thorns scored three goals in a five-minute span early in the second half to take a 5-2 win against the Boston Breakers at Providence Park in Portland, Ore. Wednesday night.
The Breakers are currently in a stretch of six games in less than three weeks, which included three road matches. The sixth and final game of this stretch comes this Saturday at home to the Washington Spirit (7 p.m. ET at Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium in Allston, Mass.).
Portland and Boston entered the second half of Wednesday’s game tied at 1-1, but the Thorns got two goals from McCall Zerboni and one from Mana Shim early in the second half and held on for the win. Kristie Mewis scored a penalty kick late in the match for the Breakers, tallying her career-best sixth goal of the season.
Alyssa Naeher clears a ball from danger in front of Christine Sinclair Wednesday night
Jodie Taylor opened the scoring in the 16th minute for Portland. The forward from England struck from inside the 18, taking a pass from Tobin Heath and bending a shot just inside the far post to give Portland a 1-0 lead.
The Breakers created a few chances in the first half, but were done in by Portland keeper Michelle Betos, who cut off a pair of dangerous crosses, one each from Suzane Pires and Mollie Pathman.
The Breakers found themselves level with the Thorns in the 36th minute when Stephanie McCaffrey’s cross was redirected into goal by Portland defender Kat Williamson.
In the defensive third, Breakers goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher was tested early and often in the first half and came up big, making three saves in the first half, including one in the 37th minute, seconds after the own goal. Naeher stopped a blistering shot from 20 yards out by Taylor.
Portland came out and scored three quick goals in the second half to take a 4-1 lead by the 54th minute. In the 49th minute, Zerboni made it a 2-1 game, taking a pass in the box from Allie Long and remaining just onside to beat Naeher. Four minutes later, Sinclair served a ball into the area, and after it was deflected in front of goal, Zerboni latched onto it for the 3-1 lead. And in the 54th minute, Portland went up, 4-1, when Shim scored off an assist from Sinclair. Portland increased its lead to 5-1 on a goal by Long in the 66th minute.
The Breakers threatened late in the match and nearly got one back in the 75th minute. Rookie Stephanie Verdoia went in one-on-one with Betos. Her first attempt was blocked and the rebound strayed a bit too far to give Verdoia a good angle, yet she still managed to get a shot off, but it hit the side netting.
In the waning moments of the game, the Breakers capitalized on a penalty kick after Portland defender Emily Menges was called for a hand ball in the box in the 87th minute. Mewis converted, scoring her team-high sixth goal of the season.
The Breakers return home for their final game at Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium this season, Saturday, Aug. 8, vs. Washington. Tickets are nearly sold out. To purchase tickets, visit www.breakerstickets.com.
Match: Boston Breakers at Portland Thorns FC
Date: Aug. 5, 2015
Venue: Providence Park, Allston, Mass.
Kickoff: 10 p.m. ET
Weather: 78 degrees, sunny
BOS: Alyssa Naeher, Lauren Lazo, Rachel Wood, Kassey Kallman, Mollie Pathman, Amy Barczuk, Katie Schoepfer, Maddy Evans (Stephanie Verdoia, 73), Kristie Mewis, Suzane Pires (Nkem Ezurike, 60), Stephanie McCaffrey (Morgan Marlborough, 73)
Subs not used: Jami Kranich, Kyah Simon
PTFC: Michelle Betos, Emily Menges, Claire Polkinhorne, Kat Williamson, McCall Zerboni, Sinead Farrelly, Kaylyn Kyle, Tobin Heath (Kendall Johnson, 73), Allie Long, Christine Sinclair (Rachel Van Hollebeke, 85), Jodie Taylor (Mana Shim, 46)
Subs not used: Nadine Angerer, Hanna Terry
GOALS 1 2 F
Boston (3-10-3) 1 1 2
Portland Thorns FC (5-6-4) 1 4 5
Goal Time Team Goal Scorer Assist
1 16 PTFC Jodie Taylor Tobin Heath
2 36 Boston Kat Williamson (own goal)
3 49 PTFC McCall Zerboni Allie Long
4 53 PTFC McCall Zerboni
5 54 PTFC Mana Shim Christine Sinclair
6 66 PTFC Allie Long
7 87 Boston Kristie Mewis (penalty kick)
SHOTS ON GOAL
BOS: Suzane Pires (caution, 30)
Referee: Matthew Kreitzer
Assistant Referees: Amanda Ross, JJ Blodgett
Fourth Official: Jason Perlewitz