Ellie Carpenter helped Portland Thorns to a 2-0 win over Utah Royals at home on Friday. Coming off the back of her game-winning goal in the previous match, Carpenter started in the 9-spot next to Christine Sinclair and Tobin Heath.

The new role is fitting for the youngster as she’s finding continued success pushing the offense from the right flank.

Caitlin Foord is still recovering from foot surgery and Hayley Raso with a strained left knee.

Foord recently posted an injury update via Twitter:

Despite the 2-0 loss to Portland, Utah Royals midfielder Katrina Gorry continues to help dictate the tempo in the attacking midfield. There was a scary sight after a play when Mini pulled up limping and in visible pain. However, no trainer was sent out and she continued to play on.

Sam Kerr scored a brace for the Chicago Red Stars in a 2-5 loss to Orlando Pride. Despite the crushing home loss, Kerr proved once again why she’s the greatest goal scorer in NWSL history.

Down 1-0 in the 21st minute, Kerr made a spectacular breakaway resulting in a shot on goal but was denied by Orlando goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris. Unable to clear the ball from the area, the Pride’s defense was frozen as seconds later Kerr received a cross back into the box where she skillfully headed it in to even up the score.

In the 52nd minute with Orlando leading 2-1, Kerr brought the score even again with another dazzling goal. Japan international Yuki Nagasato delivered a one-touch pass to Kerr who slotted the ball past a diving Harris into the near post.

“I’m just settling into the team and getting to know the players,” said Kerr before the match.

“It was really difficult missing the first five games while I was with the national team, but with each week we’re getting better.”

Both Alanna Kennedy and Emily van Egmond started and played the full 90 in a dominant performance on the road. The two Aussies continue to bring a steady control to Orlando’s attack with van Egmond starting in the 8-spot and Kennedy running the midfield. 

Making smart decisions on the pitch and creating excellent connections with teammates is making van Egmond a fan favourite in Orlando. Kennedy continues to be the consummate leader on the team and has become the “go-to” target on set pieces.

Lydia Williams made her third start of the season, helping to give Seattle Reign FC a 1-0 win on the road against Sky Blue FC. Williams was tested early and often, including nine minutes into the match when she stopped a blistering shot from Carli Lloyd that would have given Sky Blue an early lead.

Williams made another difficult save in the 33rd minute when New Zealand international Rebekah Stott tried to sneak one past the Aussie keeper at the near post. Williams got her hands on the ball just enough to keep in out of the net.

In the 26th minute, Williams went down after a collision in the box with a Sky Blue player. The resilient keeper was taken through the concussion protocol by Seattle’s trainer but was cleared to return to play to get her second clean sheet in three games.

Steph Catley was on the original game-day roster for Seattle but was scratched at the last minute due to a left ankle contusion.

In similar fashion, Kyah Simon was originally in the starting lineup for Houston Dash hosting Washington Spirit. Simon was pulled from the lineup at the last minute due to a right groin injury. Houston beat Washington 3-2.