Storylines | Orlando Pride vs. Washington Spirit

Storylines | Orlando Pride vs. Washington Spirit

Save of the Week

Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris earned the first award for the Pride in the calendar year, voted for NWSL Save of the Week following her penalty stop against Gotham FC last week. In the 12th minute of play, Harris denied Gotham’s Nahomi Kawasumi from the spot to keep the match scoreless at the time. Harris earned two NWSL Save of the Week honors a year ago at the Fall Series, now with 29 such honors since joining the Pride in 2016. 

Facing the Former

Two of the Club’s offseason additions last featured for Wednesday’s opposition before joining the Pride ahead of the 2021 campaign. Midfielder Meggie Dougherty Howard was acquired by the Pride via trade with the Spirit this past offseason, totaling 68 appearances with Washington across four seasons, while forward Crystal Thomas was signed by the Pride earlier this year after joining the Club as a preseason trialist. Thomas totaled 18 appearances across two separate stints with Washington, scoring four goals. Dougherty Howard and Thomas join a string of Pride players to have once featured for Washington, including Ashlyn Harris, Ali Krieger and Toni Pressley.

The GOAT Against the Spirit

Marta has seen much success against Wednesday’s opposition in her NWSL career, with seven goals in as many matches against the Spirit. Her seven goals against Washington is good for the most of any Pride player against any single opposition, tallying three of those in the 2019 campaign. Marta bagged a brace, including the game-winner in a thrilling 4-3 victory for the Pride on July 6 at Exploria Stadium and added another the following month at Audi Field on Aug. 24. 

Creating Opportunities

Despite falling 1-0 to Gotham FC on Wednesday, the Pride created the majority of the offense throughout the competition, outshooting the New Jersey-based club, 17-7. Sydney Leroux totaled seven shots in the match, followed by Taylor Kornieck with five. Leroux currently sits atop the NWSL with 10 shots through two contests.

Defending Our Home

The Pride hold a 3-2-1 record in The City Beautiful against Wednesday’s opposition throughout its history, with victories in three of their last four fixtures at home. The last win at Exploria Stadium against the Spirit came on July 6, 2019, with the Pride taking the victory in a 4-3 thriller behind a brace from Marta and finishes from former Orlando forwards Chioma Ubogagu and Rachel Hill.