NJNY-Recap-Web

HARRISON, N.J. (April 23, 2022) - Orlando Pride (0-4-2, 2 points) wrapped up play in the 2022 NWSL Challenge Cup on Saturday night, drawing host NJ/NY Gotham FC (1-2-3, 6 points) 1-1 at Red Bull Arena. The match marked the final game of the preseason tournament for both teams, as they will each look ahead to the May 1 season opener where they meet again, this time at Exploria Stadium in a 7 p.m. ET kickoff. 

Midfielder Gunny Jónsdóttir scored the Pride’s lone goal in the match, opening the scoring in the 10th minute with a header on Angharad James’ service. With the goal, Jónsdóttir finishes the Challenge Cup tied with Darian Jenkins for the team lead in goals with two each. 

Second-year goalkeeper Kaylie Collins made her professional debut in the match, picking up four saves including two big stops - a 65th-minute breakaway save on Ifeoma Onumonu followed by a 78th-minute point blank save on a Kristie Mewis redirect. 

Orlando Pride Head Coach Amanda Cromwell:

“I thought we started really well, getting the ball early. We’ve been working a lot on set plays and being more dangerous, especially on corner kicks, so that [goal] was really encouraging. I thought our possession was really good and we had a lot of confidence. This game is funny, you need to follow that up with getting a second one to continue the confidence building. We gave up the penalty right before half so that set the stage for the second half, not being able to keep it like we were but we were really shorthanded today. We were dealing with some injuries during the game, as well, so I was really proud of the effort. I thought Kaylie [Collins] in goal was spectacular so I’m really proud of some of the bright spots tonight. And we got a point so you have to celebrate the little wins, even the ties.”

Scoring Recap:

10’ Gunny Jónsdóttir (Angharad James) - ORL 1, NJ/NY 0

The Pride picked up the first goal of the match, with Gunny Jónsdóttir heading in a corner kick off the foot of Angharad James. Running to the near post, Jónsdóttir used a quick flick to beat Gotham goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris for the Pride’s first lead of the Challenge Cup. 

45+1’ Kristie Mewis (PK) - ORL 1, NJ/NY 1

The home team equalized just before the halftime break, with Kristie Mewis scoring on a penalty kick after Ifeoma Onumonu drew a foul in the box. 

Match Notes:

  • Goalkeeper Kaylie Collins earned her professional debut on Saturday night, the second-year netminder’s first match between the pipes. Collins made four saves in the match. 
  • After two-straight matches as a substitute, Kerry Abello made her first professional start. 
  • Midfielder Viviana Villacorta came off the Season Ending Injury list ahead of Saturday’s game, available for selection for the first time in her pro career. 
  • With the assist on Jónsdóttir’s goal, Angharad James recorded her first point as a member of the Pride and her first NWSL assist. 

Next Match: The Pride head into the regular season on Sunday, May 1, set to host NJ/NY Gotham FC. The match will mark the second-straight week the two teams play, kicking off at 7 p.m. ET at Exploria Stadium.