The Portland Thorns went undefeated during the month of June— and so of course the player honors and accolades followed.
As selected by the NWSL Media Association, the league announced today the Best XI players for the month of June, along with Player of the Month and Rookie of the Month, and there was strong representation from the Rose City on the list. Sophia Smith, Sam Coffey, Bella Bixby, and Natalia Kuikka were all named to the June Best XI, with Smith and Coffey both earning individual awards.
Sophia Smith headlines the accolades by being named the NWSL Player of the Month for the month of June. Smith had a stellar month for the Thorns, tallying five goals in the month to vault her into second in the race for the NWSL Golden Boot. In addition, Smith is fresh off of a two-goal performance for the United States Women’s National Team in their 3-0 victory over Colombia in a friendly on June 25. The star player has chipped in either a goal or assist in each of Portland’s last five matches, going back to May 28.
You can read the full press release on Smith’s selection here.
Sam Coffey also earned herself a league-wide honor by being named the NWSL Rookie of the Month for June. Coffey has started all nine of the Thorns’ regular season games this year, and has cemented herself as an influential mainstay in the middle of the pitch. She recorded her first career assist when she dished a ball in for Christine Sinclair to finish in Portland’s 2-2 draw at San Diego Wave FC on June 8. In addition, Coffey finished the month with an 85 percent pass accuracy rate— the highest of any player in the league.
You can read the full press release on Coffey’s nod here.
To round out the honors, Bella Bixby and Natalia Kuikka both joined Smith and Coffey as being named to the NWSL Best XI for June. Bixby has anchored a backline that posted three shutouts in the month of June, with Bixby herself making 10 saves along the way. Kuikka played every available minute for the Thorns during the month, was a menace attacking down the wing, and tallied her first career assist in Portland’s 6-0 demolition of the Orlando Pride on June 19.
You can read the full Thorns press release on the Best XI, along with Smith and Coffey’s selections, here.
The Portland Thorns will be back in action when they travel down to face Angel City FC on Friday July 1 at 7:30pm.