NWSL Week 12 Weekend recap


FC Kansas City downed Portland, avenging their Week 9 defeat, while Sky Blue suffered their first loss against Boston without Lisa De Vanna and Kelley O'Hara.

Western New York Flash vs Washington Spirit, Final Score: 4-0

The Flash are now unbeaten over their last nine games. They shut down the Spirit at Sahlen's Stadium with a 4-0 victory, with Carli Lloyd netting a hat trick.

In the 3rd minute of action, Alex Sahlen ran towards the corner post to put up a cross into the box which found Lloyd, who finished it off with a header over Ashlyn Harris to take a 1-0 lead, which the Flash would never relinquish.

The Flash maintained possession, with little threat coming from the visitors' end. Twenty minutes after taking the lead, Lloyd wound up her second goal of the night with an assist from Abby Wambach. The star striker shipped a ground hugging cross into the box and Lloyd managed to sneak in front of Toni Pressley to clip the ball low into the net. The Flash closed out the first half with a 2-0 lead.

It didn't take long for Lloyd to complete a hat trick in the second half. In the 55th minute, it appeared that Ashlyn Harris had stopped another one of Lloyd shots but the Spirit keeper couldn't keep possession as the ball rolled underneath her body, allowing Lloyd to finish into an open net.

The final goal of the night came during second half stoppage time from defender Brittany Taylor. Wambach headed a corner kick deep into the box to find Taylor, who managed to finish the strong on an angle to find the back of the net. The 4-0 win marked Western New York's third clean sheet of the season.

Seattle Reign FC vs Chicago Red Stars, Final Score: 3-1

A scoreless first half gave way to a fun second, with Kaylyn Kyle, Jessica Fishlock and Megan Rapinoe scoring goals to secure a 3-1 win for the home side over the Chicago Red Stars.

Seattle started the stronger of the two teams, and their best opportunity was through Kennya Cordner in the 19th minute. She tried to complete a bicycle kick volley, but her shot went wide. In the latter part of the second half, Chicago threatened to take the lead. Alyssa Mautz forced Hope Solo to punch out a power strike to give Chicago a corner. The team was unable to capitalize but would continue to press Seattle.

In the 34th minute, Inka Grings slid between two defenders in to the penalty box, forcing Solo to come off her line to make a diving save. The first half ended on a high for Seattle. In the 35th minute, Fishlock headed a powerful ball low towards the net but Erin McLeod came up with a stop.

It didn't take Seattle long to get their fans on their feet in the second half, as Kaylyn Kyle scored her first goal of the season, converting a penalty kick. Cordner made her way into the penalty box but was taken down by Ella Masar, and the referee awarded the Reign a PK.

Seattle extended their lead in the 58th minute after the Chicago back line failed to close down Christine Nairn, who was able to connect with Fishlock outside the 18 yard box. Fishlock struck a powerful strike to hit the upper 90 for a 2-0 lead.

Chicago cut the lead in half in the 83rd minute as Michelle Wenino scored a header off a corner kick to give Chicago a chance for a comeback. However, Seattle fought back, and Megan Rapinoe recorded her first at home goal in stoppage time to seal the win for her club.

FC Kansas City vs Portland Thorns FC, Final Score: 2-0

FC Kansas City turned the tables on Portland, avenging their Week 9 defeat to the previous league leaders by keeping a clean sheet in a win.

In the 10th minute, Lauren Cheney became the league leader in goals, netting her eighth of the season. Cheney received a pass in the midfield from Leigh Ann Robinson and carried the ball uninterrupted from the midfield towards the 18 yard box. She stopped just short of the box and curled a shot into the back of the net, giving her team a 1-0 lead that they would keep going into halftime.

Despite Christine Sinclair moving back to her position up front alongside Alex Morgan, the Thorns could not create any kind of a dangerous attack. FCKC had to do little defending in comparison to previous matches, this time pressing the opponents and denying them space.

The Thorns coach Cindy Parlow Cone replaced Tiffany Weimer with Danielle Foxhoven in hopes that she could create strong opportunities on goal but her attempts were short lived as the Blues continued to smother the Portland attack.

In the 71st minute, KC doubled their lead after Angie Kerr made the mistake of deflecting Robinson's cross towards her own goal instead of redirecting it towards the midfield. Merritt Mathias pounced towards the ball outside the six yard box and chipped it over LeBlanc, who was forced off her line. The Blues 2-0 lead would stand for the remainder of the match.

Boston Breakers vs Sky Blue FC, Final Score: 3-2

The Boston Breakers settled the score between Sky Blue after losing their two previous matches against the New Jersey powerhouse.

The Breakers dominated the first half, putting up 12 shots to Sky Blue's four. Boston's star striker, Sydney Leroux, opened the scoring in the 29th minute with an assistant from recent addition Jazmyne Avant. The former Thorns defender found Leroux inside the box to push the ball beyond Brittany Cameron's reach.

The 1-0 lead by Boston was short lived as Sophie Schmidt responded in the 32nd minute. Schmidt received a headed pass from Monica Ocampo, forcing Alyssa Naeher off her line. Schmidt slid through the defense and knocked the equalizer past Naeher to level the game.

In the 35th minute, Boston scored again, this time on a corner. Mariah Nogueira was on the end of Heather O'Reilly's cross and headed the ball into the net, giving Boston their second lead in less than five minutes.

Before the first half was completed, Leroux doubled her side's lead. In the 41st minute, she took a strike from 20 yards out that Cameron could not keep out to send the Breakers into halftime with a 3-1 lead.

A tight game between the clubs built up the tension going into the first half. For the second time on Sunday, Sky Blue was left searching for an equalizer as they trailed Boston by two goals. Schmidt inadvertently returned the favor in the second half, helping Ocampo score in the 58th minute to close in on the Boston lead.

Schmidt's strike was deflected by Naeher but not maintained, the rebound ball was immediately picked up by Ocampo and shot into the back of the net. For the remainder of the match Sky Blue continued to put up shots but none found the back of the net, and the top team in the league conceded a 3-2 loss to Boston.

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