Laura Harvey: ‘Mind-blowing’ that Reign-Thorns not on national TV

OL Reign coach Laura Harvey reacts to a play against the Portland Thorns at Lumen Field. (Stephen Brashear/USA TODAY Sports)

OL Reign coach Laura Harvey expressed dismay that her team’s matchup against the Portland Thorns on Sunday wasn’t on national television.

The match was highly anticipated given that the Thorns are in third place in the league standings and OL Reign in fourth.

There’s also the rivalry to consider between the two teams. The Cascadia rivalry has existed since before the two teams’ founding in 2013. Since then, however, the NWSL clubs have taken the rivalry on themselves and it’s become one of the biggest in the league.

“This rivalry doesn’t get the credit it deserves,” Harvey said. “The fact that this game isn’t on national television is mind-blowing. Every single year that I’ve been in this league, Seattle-Portland is the game that everyone looks at because we know that it’s not a made-up rivalry, it’s real. Both teams respect each other immensely and hate each other immensely. And you see that in how much it means to both teams.

“It deserves more credit. It deserves more accolades than it gets. Maybe we have to make a trophy.”

She also called the game — which ended in a 2-2 draw after the team’s traded goals — “chaotic,” citing the team’s week prior to the match, dealing with COVID-19 issues. Adding that the team hasn’t been able to train together as much, she called it “tough.”

“It’s been a very irregular week for us,” she said. “So to come back twice, to show that fight and determination, I’m very proud of this group.”