Western New York Flash beat Portland Thorns infront of 20,086
Portland Thorns 3 – 4 Western New York Flash
Samantha Mewis 16′ (Western New York Flash)
Makenzy Doniak 38′ (Western New York Flash)
Christine Sinclair 39′ (Portland Thorns)
Emily Sonnett 78′ (Portland Thorns)
Lyn Williams 78′ 104′ (Western New York Flash)
Lindsey Horan 106′ (Portland Thorns)
The Western New York Flash will return to the NWSL Championship Game for the second time in four years after forward Lynn Williams scored twice in extra time to help her team outlast Portland Thorns FC for a 4-3 victory in the semifinals of the 2016 NWSL Playoffs.
The Flash were the best offense in the league in 2016 – including an NWSL-best 21 goals in the first half of games during the regular season – and showed off their lethal attack to go up by two inside the opening 38 minutes on goals by midfielders Samantha Mewis and Makenzy Doniak.
The Thorns answered the challenge almost immediately with a goal from forward Christine Sinclair in the 39th minute as Portland quickly reminded everyone watching that they had recovered to draw level on five of the eight occasions they fell behind during the regular season – with the 63 percent recovery rate a league best.
Portland completed the comeback in the 77th minute as defender Emily Sonnett turned in her shot at the back post to force extra time and set off wild celebrations by the crowd of 20,086 at Providence Park, an NWSL postseason record. But the drama wasn’t done as Williams scored in the 98th and 104th minutes and the Flash survived an intense finish to extra time after Thorns forward Lindsey Horan pulled a goal back in stoppage time of the first half of extra time.