Friday, March 30, 2018 - Houston, TX - BBVA Compass Stadium
After a 1-1 draw at Orlando the previous week, Utah Royals FC continued their road trip in the second game of their inaugural season against the Houston Dash.
The Royals would play without defender Kelley O’Hara (hamstring) and Elise Thorsnes (concussion), who were both sidelined with injuries. This allowed for two players to make their season debuts, defender Sydney Miramontez and forward Katie Stengel.
On paper, this looked to be a victory for the Royals, but goalkeeper Jane Campbell made crucial saves to keep Utah from taking any lead. In the 28th-minute, Utah set up for a dangerous set piece at the top of the box after Brittany Ratcliffe was fouled. Gunny Jónsdóttir took the kick, aiming right for the goal, but Campbell tipped it over the net. At the 71st-minute, Utah had consecutive shots, first by Jónsdóttir whose attempt on goal was denied by Campbell’s right foot and then an Erika Tymrak follow-up went wide of the near post.
Both teams were too defensively organized throughout the game, and any chances the Dash and the Royals had were not enough to break the deadlock, even though Utah dominated possession 66-34%. The game would end 0-0, giving Utah another point on the road.
Special Game Notes
- It was the first time since 2013 that two women coaches faced each other in NWSL. Laura Harvey, in her sixth season, is the NWSL’s winningest coach while Houston’s Vera Pauw coached her second NWSL season game.
- Becca Moros left the game in the 31st minute with an injury.
- Brooke Elby, Lo’eau LaBonta, and Erika Tymrak made their first appearances for the 2018 season coming in as substitutes.
How They Lined Up
Utah Royals FC: Abby Smith; Becca Moros (Brooke Elby, 34’), Becky Sauerbrunn (C), Rachel Corsie, Sydney Miramontez; Desiree Scott, Katie Bowen (Lo,eau LaBonta, 60’)Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir; Diana Matheson, Katie Stengel, Brittany Ratcliffe (Erika Tymrak, 67’), Elise Thorsnes (Katie Stengel 62’). Subs not used: Nicole Barnhart, Maegan Kelly, Alexa Newfield, Taylor Lytle
Houston Dash: Jane Campbell, Kristie Mewis, Janine Van Wyk (Lindsay Agnew, 76’), Amber Brooks (C), Rachel Daly, Haley Hanson, Linda Maserame Motlhalo, Kimberly Keever, Meleana Shim, Veronica Latsko (Nichelle Prince, 61’), Savannah Jordan. Subs not used: Claire Falknor, Michaela Hahn, Bianca Henninger, Alli Murphy, Sammy Jo Prudhomme
*Game highlights courtesy of NWSL on YouTube.
Utah Royals FC lost to Chicago Red Stars (1-0) in their inaugural home opener in front of 19,203 fans at Rio Tinto Stadium and tied North Carolina Courage (2-2) and Portland Thorns FC (1-1) before earning their first victory versus Washington Spirit (2-0) on Saturday, May 5. The Royals again picked up another point from a tie against Orlando Pride on May 9.
Houston Dash continued with three consecutive losses to the Chicago Red Stars (3-0), Orlando Pride (1-0), and North Carolina Courage (2-0) before recording their first victory of the season against Sky Blue FC (3-2). Since then, Houston has extended their unbeaten streak to three with draws against Portland Thorns (1-1) and the Red Stars (2-2).
Upcoming Game Preview
For a preview of the upcoming game with Houston coming to town, we got you covered here!