Mar 27, 2014 7:02 PM by KVOA Sports

Arizona soccer to host Portland Thorns

TUCSON - The University of Arizona women's soccer program opens the season Friday night, against the defending National Women's Soccer League champion Portland Thorns. The match is set for 7pm at Kino Sports Complex.

"We're excited about the opportunity, not just for us as a team but for the Tucson community to get out and see soccer at a high level," said Cats head coach Tony Amato.

The Thorns captured last year's NWSL championship, but enter 2014 with a new coaching staff and an overhaul on the roster.

"The critical thing is to play games at this point in the season," said Thorns head coach Paul Riley. "You train and train and train, and the players are sick of kicking each other. It will be nice to kick someone else for a change."

The Cats earned a 9-7-4 mark in 2013, the program's first winning record since 2005. That success has Amato excited to begin the 2014 campaign.

"Our goal is to walk off the field and the fans in the stands know our girls worked hard and competed at a high level," he said. "We think it will be an excellent match all the way around."

Tickets are $10 and $15 for Friday's match. The Thorns will face Arizona State on Sunday at 2pm. The matches are hosted by FC Tucson.


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