NWSL Notebook: A Weekend of Firsts in Week 2

Debinha scores her first NWSL goal

By TOM SLATER

imgresWeek 2 of the 2017 National Women’s Soccer League was a week of firsts — at least for five players who scored their first career goals in the league.

They were: North Carolina Courage midfielder Debinha, Orlando Pride forward Danica Evans, Washington Spirit defender Line Sigvardsen Jensen, and two of Seattle Reign players, forward Katie Johnson and midfielder Kristen McNabb.

Debinha’s was the game winner against Portland while Evans’ strike gave her team a 1-1 draw with Washington.

In addition, the North Carolina Courage have already made league history with a notable league first. The club won its first match, in front of more than 6,000 fans at WakeMed Soccer Park. The Courage defense rose to the challenge and kept the Portland Thorns off the scoreboard and posted their second shutout of the season.

The arrival of Marta from Brazil was complete when she made her NWSL debut in a 1-1 draw in Orlando’s  home opener, against the Washington Spirit. Marta came on in the second half and nearly scored the game-winner in injury time.

Fishlock Named Player of the Week

Seattle was pretty quiet against Sky Blue in the opening day 1-1 draw. But the Reign scored five goals against Houston in an easy victory. Thank Jess Fishlock for it.

Fishlock scored the game’s first goal and then assisted on Megan Rapinoe‘s minutes later in the 5-1 victory and was named the league’s Player of the Week.

Lifetime Network Game of the Week

The Portland Thorns will host the Chicago Red Stars in Saturday’s nationally televised game at 4 p.m. Eastern.

After getting off to a strong start with a 2-0 win in Week 1, Portland struggled against North Carolina’s stingy defense, taking only one shot on goal. Still, the match was 0-0 until Courage midfielder Debinha scored the game-winner in the 81st minute. Chicago lost its opener, then beat FC Kansas City, 1-0. Julie Ertz’s goal was the winner.