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Canadians in action: Sinclair scores for red-hot Thorns

Sam Coffey  Christine Sinclair Thorns Sam Coffey and Christine Sinclair - Portland Thorns

Christine Sinclair helped the Portland Thorns stay hot, while Evelyne Viens scored a brace for first-place Roma and Theo Bair once again made his case for a spot on the Copa America roster.

Here's a look at Canadians in action over the weekend.

Christine Sinclair, Jessie Fleming and Janine Beckie, Portland Thorns, and Gabrielle Carle, Washington Spirit - The Portland Thorns' resurgence continued this past Saturday as the team maintained its bounce-back following the worst start in franchise history. The Thorns won a fourth straight game since head coach Mike Norris was moved upstairs and Rob Gale took over on an interim basis. The Thorns picked up their latest victory at home, 2-1, against the Washington Spirit and got on the board early. After a Spirit clearance went awry, Sophia Smith came down the right side and ran at Quebec City's Gabrielle Carle before playing a diagonal ball into the area for Hina Sugita. Sugita squared up a pass for Christine Sinclair, who instead chose to dummy it for the oncoming Sam Coffey to hammer home in the fourth minute. Burnaby, BC's Sinclair wasn't credited with an assist on the play, but she was instrumental to it being scored. Sinclair would pick up a goal of her own less than 20 minutes later. From a Coffey free kick, Isabelle Obaze headed backwards from the wall to a completely unmarked Sinclair, who would poke home past Aubrey Kingsbury to make it 2-0 in the 22nd. The goal was Sinclair's second on the season and 64th NWSL goal, pulling her 13 back of Sam Kerr for the all-time league record. The goal would end up being the game-winning marker as Trinity Rodman set up Lena Silano for an 86th-minute consolation strike for the Spirit. Sinclair finished her afternoon in the 61st minute, subbed off for Payton Linnehan, as part of a triple change that saw all three CanWNT Thorns players come off at the same time. London, Ont.'s Jessie Fleming completed 21 of her 26 pass attempts and recorded a tackle and an interception, while Janine Beckie recorded a tackle and a pair of interceptions. Carle played all 90 minutes in the loss.


Evelyne Viens, Roma - Roma continued its march towards a Serie A title with a thrilling 4-3 victory over Inter. As she has so often this season, 
L'Ancienne-Lorette, Que.'s Evelyne Viens played a key role in bagging a brace. It was Viens who opened the scoring in the 15th minute. Picking up a pass in the Inter half, Viens turned on the jets, blew past Lisa Alborghetti, who grabbed at her jersey, and fired past Sara Cetinja to make it 1-0. The visitors would tie it at 1-1 just after the half-hour mark, thanks to an own goal. Angese Bonfantini raced down the left side and attempted to find one of her teammates in the area with a cross, but her effort was turned into the net at the near post by Elena Linari. Only four minutes later, Inter was ahead. Spotting the Roma backline napping, Marija Ana Milinkovic played in a beautifully weighted ball for Lina Magull to make it 2-1 in the 35th, shocking the home crowd. That lead wouldn't last for long, however, thanks to a terrible miscue by Inter. Cetinja's attempted pass out to Henrietta Csiszar was pounced upon by Saki Kumagai, who danced around the keeper to tie it up at 2-2 in the 37th. Still, the visitors would head into the break with a lead with Magull playing provider this time. Magull sent a deep ball from her own half down the left side for Bonfantini, who spotted Camelia Ceasar off of her line and chipped over the keeper to make it 3-2 Inter in the 44th. Roma would leave it late, but they would turn it around. Doing well to latch onto a ball down the left from Sanne Troelsgaard Nielsen, Viens one-touched a right-footed effort from a tight angle to beat Cetinja in the 75th to even matters at 3-3. The goal was the 11th on the season for Viens. Then five minutes later, Roma would find their winner. After an attempted Inter clearance was knocked down, Manuela Giugliano quickly played a ball forward into the area. Valentina Giacinti beat her marker to the ball, stepped inside Katie Bowen and wrong-footed Cetinja to make it 4-3 in the 80th and wrap up the three points for Roma. With the win, Roma now sits 14 points clear of Juventus atop the table.


Theo Bair, Motherwell - Theo Bair's imperious form in the Scottish Premiership this season has not gone unnoticed by interim Canada manager Mauro Biello, who selected the former Vancouver Whitecaps forward for his CanMNT squad that defeated Trinidad and Tobago 2-0 in the Copa America playoff in February. While Bair, who's been previously capped twice, didn't see the pitch, his name is certainly in the conversation when it comes to a roster spot for next month's Copa. He emphasized that point on the weekend with a brace in Motherwell's 4-1 victory over Livingston that condemned Livi to relegation. Bair opened the scoring from the spot just after the 20-minute mark. As Georgie Kent raced to keep a ball from going out, his attempted cross was knocked out by Michael Devlin for a Motherwell corner, but Kent insisted to the ref that Devlin put the ball out with his arm. This was confirmed after a VAR check and Bair stepped up to take. After a quick stutter-step, Bair tucked his low shot inside the post and past a diving Shamal George to make it 1-0 in the 21st. The Steelmen would double their lead in first-half stoppage with an absolute screamer. Stephen O'Donnell found Sam Nicholson, who ripped a shot from distance that hit the inside of the crossbar and went in to make it 2-0 just before the break. Gent would set up Bair for his second in the 68th, whipping in a cross from the right side that was met by the Ottawa native's diving header to make it 3-0. The goal was Bair's 15th on the season, putting him third among SPL goal scorers. Dan Casey would bag a fourth for the hosts in the 74th before Livi's Joel Nouble grabbed some cold comfort in the 78th as the match finished at 4-1.The loss ends Livingston's latest SPL run after six seasons.