They Said It

 💬 Emily Sams: 'All of us just had that determination to get that shutout' after 1-0 win over Racing Louisville

Orlando Pride Head Coach Seb Hines

Opening Statement

“I think today was a tough game obviously with the quick turnaround and everything that we put into Wednesday. Their emotions and all that we had to go through after Wednesday, and then just to turn around against a good Louisville team who had a week to prepare for this game with a lot of energy you could see towards the end. The players were on their last legs, but I can't say enough compliments for them. To have that grit, that determination, the attitude, the mentality to see the game out and walk away with three points and end the week with nine points in three games. I'm really, really proud of all the efforts that they put into it.”

On how proud he is of the players

“Going into this game I just said ‘Listen, guys, take all the excuses out of the way, we’ve got to do our job.’ Today they did the job. It wasn't the prettiest of games. It wasn't a game where we played that free-flowing football even like our buildouts. Louisville did a really good job of preventing those moments for us to be lethal in the attack, but we took our goal well and I was pleased with that. Then, it was back and forth. You're looking at the clock and it's slowing down. I'm just really happy that we managed to walk away with three points after not the most exciting game, but it doesn't matter. It's three points at the end of the day.”

On the performance of Emily Sams

“One thing with this team, and with myself, is that you have to be versatile. You have to be able to play multiple positions and I think she's taken that position really well. She had a bit of a slow start into the game, the fatigue may have caught up with her early, but she grew into the game really well. Overall, she did a tremendous job. [Uchenna] Kanu has been a threat all season, at one period she was the leading goal scorer within the league, and I felt [Sams] did a great job of minimizing her opportunities. But it's also part of her development as well, we have to think about her and how she's in her second year and we have to see different areas that she can continue to improve on and I think having that versatility within herself to play right back, center back, even going back to last year she played left side center back, and they're all very different positions, so she's taken it on board. I'm pleased that she was happy with her performance.”

Orlando Pride Defender Emily Sams

Opening statement

“I think it wasn’t the prettiest game we’ve ever played, but I think given the fact that we had a three-game week and came away with nine points, I’m so proud of the team and happy with how the game went.”

On her first career assist and playing the match as a fullback

“Yeah, just naturally you have to be a little bit higher, both in the attack and in defense higher up on the pitch. I was just higher already and wanted to support Haley [McCutcheon] and she gave me the ball back and I just chipped in a cross and hoped someone was there to finish it and luckily Barbra [Banda] was there. Yeah, super happy I got my first assist.”

On the team’s collective defensive effort

"I mean, it’s tremendous. I mean, all of us just had that determination to get that shutout and get those three points for all 90 minutes. It was a grind for 90 minutes, we came into this game not as fresh as we could’ve been, or especially as the other team, but we didn’t let that be an excuse to not play our best or try to play our best at least and, like I said, we grinded for 90 minutes to get that win.”

Orlando Pride Midfielder Ally Lemos

Opening statement

“It wasn’t a pretty game, but we got the job done, did what we had to do, got the three points and we’re coming out of a midweek game, a week with nine points. Can’t really complain about that. I think this team really persevered today, and we saw that.”

On her mentality coming into her first professional start

“There were some nerves, but also some excitement. You know, this is what I’ve been working towards ever since preseason and the season started. So, I was just really excited to get out on the field and show what I can do and ultimately help the team win today.”

On her preparation coming into the game

"I think our practices really help players like me get prepared for these starting moments or even subbing in moments, because our practices and trainings are just so competitive. You know, everything we do is at 100% intensity, and at the end of the day we’re trying to make each other better with those trainings and I think that’s really what we do. I definitely feel prepared and ultimately grateful to have such great teammates and staff around me.”