Orlando Pride suffers first loss at home to Houston Dash

Pride v. Dash_highlight (2 of 3)

Carli Lloyd opened the scoring and Rachel Daly closed it as they guided the Houston Dash ta 2-0 victory over the Orlando Pride on Saturday at in front of 5,497 in attendance at Orlando City Stadium. 

Lloyd gave the Dash (3-7-0, 9 points) the lead before halftime, when Poliana dished the ball to the 2017 FIFA Women’s Best Player, who then struck the ball from outside the box past Orlando goalkeeper Aubrey Bledsoe.  

“I thought we were quite comfortable, playing OK and generally in control of the game, and found that if we could’ve scored at that point of the game, we could’ve probably won the game,” Pride head coach Tom Sermanni said. “After that I thought we were very poor. I thought our energy was poor, our effort was poor and I thought our execution was poor.” 

Poliana secured a second assist after sending a cross that connected with Daly to slot it past Bledsoe in the 62nd minute. 

“I give credit to Houston. Houston went out there and played well today and they got the all-important first goal. Which when you’re a team like where they are in the league, getting that first goal gives you that extra bit of confidence, but it is important that when that happens you’ve got to go and match that, and I don’t think we did that.” Said Tom.

Despite the outcome Orlando did not give up offensively, outshooting Houston 14-5, but did not manage to close off on any of those opportunities.

For the most part, both teams had extremely similar lineups to their previous encounter last Saturday, when Orlando defeated Houston 4-2. But for Sermanni the poor performances on behalf of many players were a decisive factor.

“I just think we had too many players who performed poorly. It is as simple as that. The tactics weren’t an issue. Although we obviously tried to change things when we were chasing the game in second half, as you have to do,” Sermanni said on team’s performance “But I just think that on the day we had too many players that were poor. Didn’t keep the ball well, weren’t aggressive enough with the runs, we didn’t move the ball quickly enough and just on the day [we] didn’t play well. For whatever reason I don’t know.”

Saturday’s loss snapped the Pride’s the two-game winning streak, but for defender Ali Krieger, the loss means nothing but a bump on the road her team can quickly overcome.

“We were on a really good winning path; we still can be on that path. It was a small fork on the road, and these are the point we are able to get and we need to get in order to climb up the table, so it’s frustrating. Obviously we are good enough to beat this team, and were good enough to win these games.”

The Pride (3-4-3, 12 points) travels to New Jersey to face Sky Blue on Wednesday at 7 p.m.

(Photo by Adrian Hernandez / Orlando Soccer Journal) 

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