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  • SPORTS | ORLANDO (FNN SPORTS) - Orlando Pride Clinch First-Ever Playoff Berth

Orlando Pride Shut Out Washington Spirit, Break Match Draw Record

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – The Orlando Pride (5-6-5, 20 points) played against the Washington Spirit (4-8-3, 15 points) in the their third and final matchup of the season at Orlando City Stadium Tuesday night. Fresh off of a disappointing draw against the Chicago Red Stars Saturday, the Pride came out with fresh energy in the hopes of securing a win tonight to get the points they need to move up the table in league standings. Plus, a win would break the draw streak they’ve had with the Spirit, having drawn in their previous two matchups this season: 1-1 in Orlando on April 22 and 2-2 at Maryland SoccerPlex on July 8.

 

STARTERS

Orlando: Monica, Stephanie Catley, Maddy Evans, Kristen Edmonds, Chioma Ubogagu, Alex Morgan, Alanna Kennedy, Marta, Camila, Ali Krieger and goalie Aubrey Bledsoe.

Washington: Caprice Dydasco, Kassey Kallman, Estelle Johnson, Whitney Church, Cheyna WIlliams, Havana Solaun, Meggie Dougherty Howard, Tori Huster, Arielle Ship, Mallory Pugh, and goalie Stephanie Labbe.

 

FIRST HALF

Washington’s defense was on point, foiling the Pride’s every goal attempt. Chioma Ubogagu actually made on in the net, but the goal was waved off because it was offsides. The Pride seemed a bit sluggish in the first half, but had one silver lining: Camila stepped up to make plays. Morgan seemed particularly slow, as if tired. She made an attempt on goal in the 39th minute, but the kick was blocked. In the 40th minute, Marta made a stylish steal and drove the ball to the goal, but kicked it too powerfully, sending it over the crossbar. She showed the world how she felt about that by spitting on the field.

In the 43rd minute, Alanna Kennedy made a steal, nearly lost the ball again, but retrieved it for a goal attempt, only to miss off the right side of the post.

During Washington’s drive to the goal, Maddy Evans attempted to slide the ball out from behind and was issued a yellow card in the 45th minute.

 

SECOND HALF

The Pride got an adrenaline boost in the 51st minute when Marta put the first point on the board with the assist by Morgan. She ran it past Labbe to knock it in, falling in the process. Camila scored the next goal in the 59th minute thanks to Labbe not being in position, bringing the score to 2-0.

Pride goalie Aubrey Bledsoe made a save in the 58th minute, running forward to kick a drive out of the box. On the other end of the field, Chioma Ubogagu got a yellow card in the 59th minute in her efforts to wrest the ball from Washington.

Despite the penalty, the Pride’s momentum continued to increase. Morgan finally got goal she wanted with the help of a long pass from Steph Catley in the 64th minute, bringing the score to 3-0. Tonight’s goal was her third in three consecutive home games.

 

SUBSTITUTIONS

Orlando:

Alex Morgan out for Danica Evans – 70′

Marta out for Nicolette Driesse – 75′

 

Washington:

Arielle Ship out for Cali Farquharson – 64′

Estelle Johnson out for Alyssa Kleiner – 68′

Mallory Pugh out for Estefania Banini – 72′

Camila out for Jamia Fields – 81′

 

PENALTIES

Orlando:

YC – Maddy Evans – 45′

YC – Chioma Ubogagu – 59′

 

The Pride next face the Sky Blue FC at Orlando City Stadium Saturday, August 12 at 7:30pm.

___________________________________________

Mellissa Thomas is the Chief Editor for Florida National News. | news@floridanationalnews.com

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