ORLANDO, Fla. (Sept. 25, 2020) - Orlando Pride (0-0-1, 1 point) closes out its two-game road trip to start the NWSL Fall Series, traveling to face the Challenge Cup Champion Houston Dash (0-1-0, 0 points) on Saturday, Sept. 26. Kickoff is set for 8:30 p.m. ET at BBVA Stadium, with the match set to be streamed live on Twitch.
“We’re playing two totally different opposition, the wonderful thing is that they’re both top teams. In terms of Houston, after their success in the Challenge Cup, they have come back and you can see they were full of vigor and full of life against North Carolina,” Head Coach Marc Skinner said. “It’ll be a different challenge, they’ll offer a different system, a different opportunity to play against, which gives an opportunity for some of our players to expose that and to be exposed into that as well. I expect it to be an extremely tough challenge like North Carolina was, but in a slightly different way."
The Pride opened their Fall Series slate with an impressive performance, battling to a scoreless draw against the back-to-back NWSL Champion North Carolina Courage. The Club earned the clean sheet thanks to an effort that saw goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris make four saves for the Pride, while defender Carrie Lawrence had a goal-line clearance in her professional debut.
Five members of the Pride earned their first NWSL minutes this past Saturday, with Lawrence and 2020 NWSL Draft selection Courtney Petersen earning the start on the backline. Midfielder Jordyn Listro also appeared in Skinner’s starting lineup for her professional debut, while midfielders Chelsee Washington and Deneisha Blackwood came off the bench to log their first league minutes.
Houston comes into Saturday’s match following a week off from match play, their last outing on Saturday, Sept. 12 in a 4-3 loss to North Carolina. Veronica Latsko, Kristie Mewis and Sophie Schmidt each found the back of the net for the Dash in the match, but their three goals weren’t enough to earn a result against the Courage.
The three goalscorers from that match sit tied for the team-high in goals scored for the Dash through the Fall Series, while NWSL Challenge Cup MVP and Golden Boot winner Rachel Daly leads Houston through all competitions in finishes in 2020.
Following Saturday’s match at Houston, the Pride will have a week off from match play before a two-game home stint to close out the Fall Series, first playing host to the Dash on Friday, Oct. 9 at Osceola County Stadium before returning to Exploria Stadium for the first time this year to host the North Carolina Courage on Saturday, Oct. 17.