Recap: Spirit draws, 1-1, with Thorns in epic return to Audi Field

Washington Spirit  |   August 27, 2023
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Washington, D.C. (08/27/2023) – The Washington Spirit drew, 1-1, with Portland Thorns FC off a thrilling second half stoppage time goal off the foot of Ashley Hatch. A 2023 record 13,048 people were in attendance for the match. 


The Spirit controlled the pace of the game early, possessing the ball over 70% of the time over ten minutes into game action. In this time, the Spirit registered three shots, six touches inside the opponent box and 12 final third entries, including a header from Trinity Rodman off a cross from Ouleymata Sarr, who made her first career NWSL start. 


It took 23 minutes for the Thorns to record a shot. 2022 NWSL MVP, Sophia Smith, took the shot, her 74th of the regular season – most of any player in the NWSL. The shot was the Thorns’ first look inside the Spirit box. 


The first half ended in a stalemate, neither team with a truly threatening scoring chance. Of note, though, was Smith’s substitution in the first minute of stoppage time due to injury. Additionally, Rodman dazzled with some saucy footwork eluding a defender, but nothing came of the play. 



Rodman kept her foot on the gas, logging a shot on goal in the 56th minute, nearly bending it past Portland keeper Bella Bixby. She led the team with three shots to that point. 


On only its second shot on target of the match, Portland broke the draw. Morgan Weaver chipped the ball past Kingsbury, her fifth goal of the season. When conceding the opening goal of the match, the Spirit is 1-3-1. Portland has now scored in its last 21 regular season road matches. 


In dramatic fashion, the Spirit earned a much-deliberated VAR decision that resulted in a penalty kick two minutes into second half stoppage time. Accordingly, Hatch took to the spot and buried the game-tying goal.  


Hatch is now eight-for-eight from the spot during the regular season (nine-for-nine in all competitions) in her Spirit career. The goal sets a Spirit team record for number of converted penalty kicks in one season (5) and is one shy of the NWSL record – Kim Little (RGN) and Heather O’Reilly (BOS) both connected on six penalty kicks in 2014. 


The Spirit stand at 6-3-8 (26 points), tied for the third-most points in team history through 17 regular season games. The team has also scored in 15 of 17 matches this season, the second most of any team in the NWSL. 


Next on the schedule, the Spirit will face off against the Chicago Red Stars at Audi Field on Sunday, September 3 at 5:00 p.m. EDT. Find tickets here. 


-NWSL Match Report- 

Match: Washington Spirit vs. Portland Thorns FC 

Date: August 27, 2023 

Venue: Audi Field  

Kickoff: 5:00 p.m. EDT  

Weather: Sunny, high-80s 


Scoring Summary: 

Goals  1  2  F 
Washington  0  1  1 
Portland  0  1  1 

POR – Morgan Weaver – 64’ 

WAS – Ashley Hatch (PK) – 90’+2’ 



WAS: 1- Aubrey Kingsbury; 14- Gabrielle Carle (5- Annaïg Butel, 77’); 3- Sam Staab; 9- Tara McKeown; 19- Dorian Bailey; 26- Paige Metayer; 10- Ashley Sanchez (39- Chloe Ricketts, 68’); 12- Andi Sullivan; 8- Ouleymata Sarr (30- Camryn Biegalski, 67’); 33- Ashley Hatch; 2- Trinity Rodman (24- Lena Silano, 90’+10’) 

Unused Substitutes: 28- Nicole Barnhart; 22- Amber Brooks; 16- Maddie Elwell; 23- Tori Huster; 25- Marissa Sheva 


POR: 1- Bella Bixby; 25- Meghan Klingenberg (2- Reyna Reyes, 72’); 5- Emily Menges; 39- Meghan Nally; 14- Natalia Kuikka; 17- Sam Coffey; 11- Rocky Rodriguez (46- Taylor Porter, 46’); 13- Olivia Moultrie (19- Crystal Dunn, 72’); 22- Morgan Weaver; 12- Christine Sinclair (8- Hina Sugita, 61’); 9- Sophia Smith (33- Hannah Betfort, 45’+3’) 

Unused Substitutes: 24- Izzy D’Aquila; 18- Shelby Hogan; 44- Gabby Provenzano; 4- Becky Sauerbrunn 


Stats Summary: WAS / POR 

Shots: 14 / 10 

Shots On Goal: 5 / 4 

Shots Blocked: 4 / 3 

Saves: 3 / 4 

Tackles Won: 14 / 14 

Fouls: 6 / 9 

Offsides: 0 / 1 


Misconduct Summary: 

POR – Rocky Rodriguez – 41’ 

WAS – Annaïg Butel – 90’+9’ 

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