Recap | Pride Fall 2-0 in Loss to North Carolina on Sunday

ORLANDO, Fla. (July 4, 2021) - Orlando Pride (4-2-3, 15 points) fell for the first time in the City Beautiful this regular season, dropping a 2-0 result to the North Carolina Courage (5-2-1, 16 points) on Sunday night at Exploria Stadium.

Ashlyn Harris tallied her highest save total of the regular-season, registering seven saves on the night and making her third penalty stop across all competition this year, denying Lynn Williams in the 35th minute to keep the Courage lead at one at the time. With her appearance on Sunday, Harris tied former Pride defender Kristen Edmonds for second in Club-history at 69 appearances in purple. Harris now trails only former Orlando midfielder Dani Weatherholt, who holds the Club-record with 73.

The Pride return to action on Friday, July 9, set to welcome Racing Louisville to downtown Orlando for the very first time. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET with tickets available at orlando-pride.com.

Orlando Pride Head Coach Marc Skinner:
“I thought we were very good at times. Obviously the goals are a mistake and a counter-attack, which North Carolina are probably the best at counter-attacking in the league, so it’s always going to be something dangerous when you’re trying to push to get a goal. I was pleased with our attacking output, I was pleased that we were trying to find different ways without Alex [Morgan] in our attack lineup to find a goal. I felt we should have scored. Our players have been tested again psychologically, Ali Krieger comes out of the game, then Toni [Pressley] and Konya [Plummer] who haven’t played for a while come straight back in and do a great job. Overall, the psyche of the team keeps growing stronger. We keep getting more exposed to different scenarios, different expectations and the group keeps growing. Overall, as disappointing as a loss is, it’s a really, really good performance and something that we can definitely build from and add it to the experience that we’re gaining.”

Scoring Recap:
3’ Debinha - NC 1, ORL 0
The visitors struck early with Debinha picking off a pass from the Pride defense and hitting a right-footed shot from the center of the box around goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris into the bottom left corner of the net. 

66’ Havana Solaun (Jessica McDonald) NC 2, ORL 0
The visitors extended their lead to two in the 66th minute of the match, with Havana Solaun firing a right-footed shot into the top left corner of the net. Jessica McDonald picked up the assist, popping the ball to Solaun in the center of the box on a hectic play.

Match Notes:

  • Ashlyn Harris kept the North Carolina lead at one in the 35th minute of play, denying Lynn Williams from the penalty spot in what served as her third denial of PK attempt across all competitions this year. 
  • With her appearance on Sunday, Harris tied former Pride defender Kristen Edmonds at second all-time in Club history with her 69th appearance in purple. Harris now trails only former Orlando midfielder Dani Weatherholt in that category, who holds the record at 73.
  • Toni Pressley tallied her first start of the regular season on the night and her second across all competitions, while Crystal Thomas recorded her first start overall as a member of the Pride. 
  • Konya Plummer made her first appearance for the Pride since the Club’s April 14 Challenge Cup fixture against NJ/NY Gotham FC, entering the match in the 45th minute for Ali Krieger.
  • Amy Turner made her Orlando Pride debut in the match, entering in the 80th minute for Toni Pressley. 
  • Taylor Kornieck made her return to the pitch on Sunday night after a small injury, her first since June 23 against Kansas City, tallying her seventh start of the regular season. 
  • Sunday served as the last match for Marta before she joins the Brazilian Women’s National Team to compete in her fifth Olympic Games, this time traveling to Tokyo. 
  • The Pride were shutout for the first time this year, serving as the last team in NWSL to be held scoreless in a match thus far this campaign.  

Next Match:

The Pride return to Exploria Stadium on Friday, July 9, set to host expansion side Racing Louisville for the first time in the City Beautiful. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET with tickets available at orlando-pride.com.

Scoring Summary:

NC - Debinha 3’

NC - Havana Solaun (Jessica McDonald) 66’

Misconduct Summary:

NC - Carson Pickett (Yellow Card) 29’

NC - Ryan Williams (Yellow Card) 90+1’

Lineups/Substitutions:

Orlando Pride

- GK Ashlyn Harris ©; D Ali Riley, Ali Krieger (Konya Plummer 45’), Toni Pressley (Amy Turner 80’), Courtney Petersen; M Gunny Jónsdóttir, Meggie Dougherty Howard, Taylor Kornieck (Abi Kim 80’); F Marta, Sydney Leroux, Crystal Thomas (Erika Tymrak 66’)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Kaylie Collins, Brittany Wilson; D Ally Haran, Carrie Lawrence; M Chelsee Washington

North Carolina Courage

- GK Casey Murphy; D Merritt Mathias (Ryan Williams 80’), Abby Erceg ©, Kaleigh Kurtz, Carson Pickett; M Denise O’Sullivan, Havana Solaun (Cari Roccaro 88’), Angharad James (Kristen Hamilton 67’); F Lynn Williams, Debinha (Meredith Speck 88’), Jess McDonald (Hailie Mace 79’)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Katelyn Rowland; D Diane Caldwell; M Taylor Smith; F Brittany Ratcliffe

Details of the Game:

Time: 6 p.m. ET

Weather: Sunny

Date: July 4, 2021

Attendance: 3,926

Stats Summary: ORL / NC

Possession: 43.3% / 56.7%

Shots: 19 / 13

Shots on Goal: 9 / 9

Saves: 7 / 9

Corner Kicks: 8 / 6

Fouls: 8 / 4

Offside: 1 / 5

Officials: 

REF: Karen Abt

AR1: Juan Pablo Casas

AR2: Rebecca Luther

4TH: Sarieni Vasquez

Heineken Star of the Match

: Ashlyn Harris

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