Published May 17, 2024




The WPSL announced the additions of two Cascadia sides to the league for the 2024 season in March. With Portland Thorns FC II and Seattle Reign FC II aligned in the Northwest Conference, the competition in PNW is set to reach new heights. 

“By entering Seattle Reign FC II into the WPSL, Seattle Reign FC is taking another step to bridge gaps in our pathway by providing our top academy players and alumnae with the opportunity to prepare for their collegiate seasons,” Amy Griffin, Seattle Reign Academy executive director, said.

The Portland Thorns Academy and Seattle Reign Academy represent opportunities for female athletes across the region. Both academies invest a ton of resources to make dreams become reality. Their commitment to excellence has led them both to join the WPSL.

Portland will be led by Tracy Nelson, Portland Thorns Academy director of coaching and WPSL head coach. 

“We are immensely proud to be part of such a prestigious league [WPSL] and look forward to providing additional opportunities for females to play at an elite level as a member of the WPSL,” Nelson said.

Seattle Reign FC II has named Reilee DuPratt as its head coach for the 2024 season. 

“We have always wanted to add a WPSL team to complete our pathway to the pros,” DuPratt said. “What excites me most about it is the fact our talented Reign players will get to return for the summer and continue to represent the organization as amazing ambassadors and players in our Reign community.”

Their senior teams have dominated the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) since its inaugural season. The two franchises have combined for five NWSL shields and three championships. The Cascadia rivalry is considered to be the best in the league and one of the best in all of women’s sports. 

Portland Thorns FC II and Seattle Reign FC II will now have the opportunity to reignite that rivalry in the WPSL. DuPratt’s excitement for these two Cascadia sides to clash was apparent. 

“The history between Reign and Portland is fun,” DuPratt said. “Competitive rivalries drive the excitement for the players as well as the fans. We look forward to competing against Portland this season!”

Both clubs have players with history in the WPSL which makes these Cascadia clashes even more special.

Thorns FC players who’ve competed in the WPSL include 2018 WPSL Champion Morgan Weaver (Seattle Sounders Women), current USWNT midfielder Sam Coffey (New York SC Elite), Mexico Women’s National Team standout Reyna Reyes (FC Dallas), and 2024 NWSL draft pick, Kate Asman (Chicago Red Stars Reserves). 

The Reign’s first team already holds a WPSL connection with players like Alana Cook (MVLA Wolves, 2017) and Bethany Balcer (Sounders Women, 2018).

“I love the competitive rivalry and we are very excited for the game on Sunday,” Nelson said. “ We have a great relationship with the Reign and it's great to see two teams affiliated with the professional NWSL teams competing in the same league.  

There are many great rivalries in the WPSL, but this one has the making of being among the best with the history from their senior teams. The players have witnessed what those games mean and now get to play on their own in the WPSL. 

These two sides will kick off their first Cascadia clash this Sunday, May 19 at Starfire Field on the Reign’s turf. 

The final match between these two will take place at Providence Park on Friday, May 24 at 7pm.