KISSIMMEE, FL – The Orlando Pride (0-2-1, 1 point) lost to the Houston Dash (3-1-0, 9 points) 2-1 in a match played in Osceola County Stadium in Kissimmee on the Orlando City SC Training Grounds.
The Dash, this year’s NWSL Tournament champions, this win ends the Dash’s fall campaign. The Dash sit in second place behind the Portland Thorns.
For the Pride, this is their first home match since Sunday September 29th, 2019. They didn’t participate in the NWSL Challenge due to positive COVID-19 tests. This season has certainly been strange.
Houston opened the scoring in the match in the 13th minute when Kristie Mewis found open space down the left flank before teeing up a cross that found the head of a flying Shea Groom in the box for the finish.
The Dash added on in the 29th minute with Mewis again creating the play, this time sending a through ball in behind the Pride defense for Veronica Latsko, who was able to cut back and lay the ball into the back of the net.
Orlando did not have a good showing in the first alf, with Houston taking all 11 shots in the first half.
Rookie Goalkeeper Brittany Wilson was in goal for Orlando as Ashlyn Harris was out due to a death in the family. Wilson the Pride proud as she defended goal well against Houston, with several key saves.
Houston had little trouble with the short handed pride, who have 20 players loaned out this season.
The Pride came out to open the second half with vigor. They had a strong attacking fire that had the Dash on their heels.
Orlando’s Sydney Leroux scored Orlando’s one goal in the 47th minute when Abby Elinsky got free down the right hand side and sent the ball across the face of goal, finding the foot of Sydney Leroux who hammered it straight up into the goal.
During the match, Pride defender Carrie Lawrence took a shot to the chest and needed to br brought off go the filed on a stretcher, she was taken to a local hospital as as a precaution.
Orlando definitely battled in the second half and make it a game, but Houston’s talent was able to keep the Pride at Bay for the win.
Orlando will close out the Fall Series on Saturday, Oct. 17 against the North Carolina Courage in its first match at Exploria Stadium in the calendar year. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. ET.