Thorns open with win
Caitlin Foord and Tobin Heath combined on a pair of goals on Sunday as the Portland Thorns opened the National Women's Soccer League season with a 2-0 win over the Orlando Pride.
In the first of six road games to begin their season, the Thorns were proactive from the start.
Effectively pressing high up the field, Portland created multiple chances in the first half and finally broke through just before halftime.
Christine Sinclair played a ball on the ground for Heath inside the penalty area. Heath drew two defenders and back-heeled the ball to Foord, who lifted a left-footed shot from 10 yards into the goal.
Foord set up Heath five minutes after halftime. The Australian forward drove a low ball across the 6-yard box from the right wing that Heath was able to re-direct into the goal while falling down.
Thorns goalkeeper Adrianna Franch was credited with one save. After a quiet first half, Orlando was much more dangerous after falling behind 2-0. Alex Morgan twice hit the frame in the second half for the Pride.
Orlando should have scored in second-half stoppage time when a long forward pass created a break-in chance for Morgan that Franch was able to disrupt. But the ball fell into the path of Orlando's Kristen Edmonds, who missed an open goal from 16 yards.
The Thorns outshot the Pride 22-15, including 8-2 on goal.
In the first half, Portland outshot Orlando 16-5 and forced Pride goalkeeper Ashlynn Harris into five saves. The Thorns created eight scoring chances in the first half, including three good looks from Ana Crnogorcevic that missed the target.
Moments after Portland's second goal, Lindsey Horan ripped a shot from 18 yards that Harris parried away.
In the 75th minute, Heath dribbled into the 18-yard box and attempted to chip the ball over the oncoming Harris, who reacted well to deny Heath a second goal.
The second of the six away games to open the Thorns season is at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at Chicago.