Portland Thorns trade defender Madison Pogarch to San Diego Wave for defender Tegan McGrady

Portland Thorns defender Madison Pogarch

Portland Thorns defender Madison Pogarch (#15) passes the ball toward the box against the Houston Dash during an NWSL match at Providence Park on Saturday, May 21, 2022. Sean Meagher/The Oregonian


The Portland Thorns have traded defender Madison Pogarch to San Diego Wave FC for defender Tegan McGrady, the team announced on Monday.

Pogarch, 24, was undrafted out of Rutgers University and signed with Portland in 2019. She appeared in 45 games in four seasons with the Thorns.

“It’s bittersweet to watch Po go, she has been an absolute professional, leading in the community, locker room and on the field, she will be missed,” Karina LeBlanc, general manager, of the Thorns, said in a release from the club. “In speaking with Po, she was thankful for her time with Thorns and the role the club provided in helping her start her professional career. It is something she never took for granted. Early in the season, Po approached us and said if the right opportunity presented itself with a new club she would be open to that discussion, and along with Po we felt this was the right situation. We wish her all the best as she heads to San Diego.”

McGrady was the seventh overall pick by the Washington Spirit in the 2019 NWSL draft and was teammates with Thorns forward Sophia Smith at Stanford. She appeared in 16 matches for the Spirit last season (including 11 starts) on the way to a NWSL championship. She appeared in 10 games (9 starts) for the first-place Wave this season.

“Tegan is an intense competitor who is strong on the ball and likes to get involved in attacks,” Thorns coach Rhian Wilkinson said in the release. “She reads the game well and has wonderful timing to join in and contribute to attacks. We look forward to having Tegan become our newest Thorns addition, we know she will bring a lot to the team and the organization as a whole through her play and because of her top character.”

Pogarch is currently in a relationship with Wave defender (and former Thorns teammate) Christen Westphal, and the pair will be teammates once again along San Diego’s back line.

-- Ryan Clarke, rclarke@oregonian.com