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Wilted Roses: FC Kansas City 2-0 Portland Thorns

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Amy Rodriguez and Lauren Holiday both scored second half goals to send FC Kansas City to the NWSL Championship.

Thad Bell

FC Kansas City avenged last year's 3-2 playoff loss as they defeated the Portland Thorns 2-0.

Lauren Holiday and Amy Rodriguez both provided second half goals as the Blues maintained their undefeated season at home.

The first half was met with two strong defenses. Neither team threatened too much on goal as they both tried to win the midfield. There would be a couple of chances near the end of the half for both teams but neither was able to put a goal in the net. The teams went into the locker room tied at 0-0.

Portland nearly got a goal right off the bat in the second half. Alex Morgan was able to break free of the Blues' defense and get a one-on-one breakaway. Nicole Barnhart, however, came out and was able to get down low on the ball, stopping Morgan's attempt before she was able to get a clean shot off.

FC Kansas City finally broke through in the 63rd minute. Lauren Holiday sent a ball to Amy Rodriguez, giving her the ball alone in front of goal. Rodriguez drove around the keeper and slotted it home for the score. It was her 14th goal of the year as the Blues led 1-0.

With the one-goal lead, FC Kansas City focused on keeping the possession of the ball and keeping it away from the dangerous Portland attack. As the time started to run down, the Blues were still saving their subs due to the potential of a thirty-minute overtime if the Thorns equalized.

The Blues put the nail in the coffin in the 87th minute when Lauren Holiday got a ball behind the defense from Hagen. Her wide open attempt was on target as she put FC Kansas City up 2-0. This was the result of the Blues keeping the ball in the attacking third and not letting the Thorns get the opportunity to strike back.

Vlatko Andonovski was able to use all of his subs from this point, giving Amy Rodriguez, Erika Tymrak and Merritt Mathias some rest for the last five minutes of the match or so. The teams ran out the clock after the second goal, giving the Blues the 2-0 victory and propelling them to the NWSL Championship.

The Final will be Sunday, August 31st at 2 pm. The Blues will host the final if the Washington Spirit defeat the Seattle Reign tomorrow night. If Seattle wins, they will host the final.