Welcome to your match thread as the Orlando Pride (2-5-3, 9 points) return to Exploria Stadium to host the Houston Dash (4-3-3, 15 points) this evening. This is the second and final scheduled meeting between the Pride and the Dash during the 2022 NWSL regular season.
Here’s all you need to know about tonight’s game.
The Pride and Dash have played 17 times since the Pride joined the NWSL in 2016. Orlando has a 5-8-2 record against the Dash in regular-season play and a 3-3-1 record in regular-season games at home. Additionally, the teams played two Fall Series games in 2020, both of which were won by the Dash.
The most recent match-up between the two teams was on June 3 in Houston. The hosts were led by a Nichelle Prince hat trick, while Rachel Daly and Michelle Alozie added goals in a 5-0 Dash win. It was the last game the Pride played before Head Coach Amanda Cromwell was placed on administrative leave.
The Pride and Dash played twice during the 2021 season. The first game was on June 26 in Houston. Maria Sanchez and Veronica Latsko scored in the 18th and 26th minutes, giving the hosts a 2-0 lead. Gunny Jonsdottir got one back in the 49th minute, but it wasn’t enough as the Dash won 2-1.
The second meeting came on Sept. 5 at Exploria Stadium. The Dash took a 10th-minute lead through Daly and the score remained the same for 69 minutes. However, Taylor Kornieck equalized in the 79th minute, resulting in a 1-1 draw.
The 2020 NWSL season was canceled due to COVID but these two teams were matched up in the Fall Series. On Sept. 26, 2020 in Houston, Prince gave the Dash a 27th-minute lead but Marisa Viggiano responded just before halftime. Sophie Schmidt gave the hosts another lead and Shea Groom put the game away as Houston took a 3-1 win.
The two teams played again on Oct. 9 at Osceola County Stadium in Kissimmee — the only time the Pride have played at the venue. Groom opened the scoring in the 13th minute and Latsko made it 2-0 in the 29th minute. Sydney Leroux got one back for the hosts in the 47th minute, but Houston held on for a 2-1 win.
The Pride and Dash played three times in 2019, with the Pride going 0-2-1. During the first game in Houston on May 5, the Pride only recorded one shot on target. However, Houston only got one goal through Kealia Ohai in a 1-0 win. The second game on June 15 was also in Houston. Joanna Boyles scored her first professional goal to give the Pride the lead, but the Dash scored twice to take the advantage. It was a 71st-minute Danica Evans conversion that allowed the Pride to escape the Oven with a 2-2 draw.
The third and final meeting in 2019 occurred on Aug. 10 in Orlando. The Pride ended the game with nine players as Julie King was sent off in the 61st minute, and Marta was sent off in the 85th minute. However, the Dash were only able to convert once — an 87th-minute penalty by Daly — and won 1-0.
The teams played three times during the 2018 season. The first game was on April 22 in Orlando. Chioma Ubogagu scored the lone goal in the 65th minute, leading the Pride to a 1-0 win. They met again in Orlando on June 27. Alex Morgan opened the scoring in the 22nd minute and the Pride held that lead at the break. But the second half was all Houston, as Ohai and Sofia Huerta scored in the 79th and 83rd minutes, respectively, resulting in a 2-1 Houston win. The final meeting that season was on July 11 in Houston, where Daly’s brace led the Dash to a 3-1 win.
The Pride and Dash played twice during the 2017 season and the visiting team won both games. The first was on June 17 in Houston. Camila and Alanna Kennedy added to a Marta brace as the Pride took a commanding 4-0 lead. The Dash tried to come back with goals by Poliana and Prince, but the Pride took home a 4-2 win. A week later in Orlando, Carli Lloyd and Daly scored in a 2-0 Houston win.
The teams met for the first time during the 2016 season — the Pride’s first in existence — and they met four times that season. The first meeting was the Pride’s first-ever regular-season home game on April 23. An Andressa own goal gave the Pride the lead just after the half before Lianne Sanderson and Morgan made it 3-0 for the hosts. Andressa scored one for her own team in the 75th minute, but that was it for Houston as the Pride won 3-1 in front of 23,403 fans.
The second meeting was in Houston on May 20. Kristen Edmonds scored the only goal in the 81st minute as the Pride won 1-0. The third meeting that year came on June 23 in Orlando. Jasmyne Spencer broke the scoreless deadlock in second-half injury time as the Pride won 1-0. The fourth and final meeting came on Sept. 3 in Houston. The Dash took a 3-0 lead with goals by Janine Beckie, Poliana, and Ohai. Morgan and Edmonds got the Pride back into the game, but Ohai put it away with her second in a 4-2 Dash win.
The Pride broke a three-game losing streak Sunday night in an historic event. In front of 7,573 fans at Daytona International Speedway, the Pride erased a 2-0 second-half deficit with goals by Kylie Strom and Darian Jenkins to draw Racing Louisville 2-2.
Strom’s 59th-minute goal last weekend ended a 329-minute goal scoring drought that lasted over three-and-a-half games. The most recent goal prior to that strike was a conversion eight minutes into injury time by Jenkins on May 27 against the Washington Spirit. That was also the last time the Pride played at home, as they spent the entire month of June away from Orlando.
The Pride will be looking to build on a much-improved performance in Daytona and use home-field advantage to get their first win since May 18, when they beat the North Carolina Courage 2-1 in Cary, NC.
The Dash are coming off a longer break than the Pride, as their last game was a 2-1 win over the Kansas City Current on July 1. The team is led offensively by Prince and Daly, who have scored five and four goals this year, respectively. The two have mainly been set up by Maria Sanchez, who has three assists this year, and Shea Groom, who has two assists.
“From our last performance, we have set a foundation and it is something to build on. It is more about us than Houston to be honest,” interim Head Coach Seb Hines said. “We are trying to build something here where everyone is bought in, and everyone is going in the same direction, and we are all working for each other. Yes, Houston have had some good results. We obviously owe them one with what happened away, but hopefully everyone can see it is a different Orlando Pride than what it has been in the past.”
The only changes to the Pride’s availability list from Sunday night’s draw with Louisville are Parker Roberts (ankle) is out and Julie Doyle (ankle) has been upgraded to questionable. Marta (SEI), Leah Pruitt (knee), and Angharad James (excused absence) are all still out and Gunny Jonsdottir (Iceland) is still on international duty at Euro 2022.
The Dash have a long list of players out for this game. Kelcie Hedge (right knee) and Annika Schmidt (right knee) are out with season-ending injuries, and Elizabeth Eddy has an excused absence. Additionally, the Dash have seven players away on international duty, including Michaela Abam (Cameroon), Michelle Alozie (Nigeria), Allysha Chapman (Canada), Daly (England), Prince (Canada), Sanchez (Mexico), and Schmidt (Canada).
Orlando Pride (4-2-3-1)
Goalkeeper: Erin McLeod.
Defenders: Celia, Megan Montefusco, Carrie Lawrence, Kylie Strom.
Defensive Midfielders: Jordyn Listro, Meggie Dougherty Howard.
Midfielders: Viviana Villacorta, Erika Tymrak, Kerry Abello.
Forwards: Darian Jenkins.
Bench: Anna Moorhouse, Thais Reiss, Mikayla Cluff, Courtney Petersen, Toni Pressley, Chelsee Washington, Caitlin Cosme, Kaylie Collins, Abi Kim.
Houston Dash (3-4-3)
Goalkeeper: Jane Campbell.
Defenders: Julia Ashley, Katie Naughton, Ally Prisock.
Midfielders: Emily Ogle, Bri Visalli, Marisa Viggiano, Haley Hanson.
Forwards: Ebony Salmon, Natalie Jacobs, Joelle Anderson.
Bench: Maegan Rosa, Ella Dederick, Shea Groom, Paulina Gramaglia, Ryan Gareis, Cali Farquharson, Haley Berg, Makamae Gomera-Stevens, Machaela George.
REF: Natalie Simon.
AR1: Jessica Carnevale.
AR2: Rhett Hammil.
4TH: Daniel Gutierrez.
How to Watch
Match Time: 7 p.m.
Venue: Exploria Stadium — Orlando.
Streaming: Twitch (Global).
Twitter: For rapid reaction and live updates, following along at @TheManeLand and the Orlando Pride’s official Twitter feed (@ORLPride).
Enjoy the match. Go Pride!