It’s been a long time since all three Orlando pro soccer teams won a game in the same weekend. You’ll have to go all the way back to May of 2016, the Orlando Pride and Orlando City B’s inaugural seasons, to find such a time.
This past weekend, six years later, the Pride, OCB, and Orlando City got important road victories in their seasons, moving each of them up the standings in their respective leagues.
This was also the first time all three teams had shutouts on the same weekend and were able to do it on the road.
Orlando City beats New York Red Bulls 1-0
In a game that lacked a finishing touch for most of the match, all it took was one quick break from the Lions to put the away team in front, thanks to Alexandre Pato, Junior Urso, and Facundo Torres. The DP’s strike in the 17th minute, which started with a line-breaking pass from Pato, got Orlando out in front early on, as they defended well the rest of the way for a 1-0 road result.
Despite the Red Bulls having 13 more shots than Orlando did the entire game, both teams only mustered one shot on target apiece. Lions midfielder Jake Mulraney put it best after the match, “Who cares, we won. We needed three points, we got three points.”
The biggest worry following the match is the health of attacker Alexandre Pato, who came out of the game just before halftime with a knee injury.
“At this moment, Pato has crutches. He can’t walk,” Head Coach Oscar Pareja said after the match. “The play was a foul because it was the player who was hurt and I thought it was surely when he tackled his knee.”
The team will wait for an evaluation later this week to see the extent of the injury, which could be a massive blow to Orlando’s already thin forward line.
Orlando Pride beats San Diego Wave 1-0
A 23rd-minute penalty from Meggie Dougherty Howard saw the Pride go across the country and get a massive result against one of the top teams in the league, the San Diego Wave.
It’s now six unbeaten in a row for interim Head Coach Seb Hines and his staff, who have completely turned the season around and now sit just three points behind a playoff spot.
“This team has been through a lot this year,” Defender Megan Montefusco said after the match. “And to come out here and win like we did tonight. We played football, and we played great soccer tonight. And I’m just so proud of this team. It’s emotional honestly.”
Orlando had to survive a number of shots off the post and crossbar on the night, which Hines mentioned was their “best players” on the night. They managed to keep NWSL’s leading scorer and former Pride player Alex Morgan off the scoresheet, paired with some big saves from goalkeeper Erin McLeod.
Orlando City B beats NYCFC II 2-0
The young Lions took a trip up to Queens, New York on the campus of St. Johns University and came away with all three points, thanks to a brace from the OCB’s leading scorer Jack Lynn. His 13th and 14th goals on the season propelled the Lions to a big win over one of the top teams in MLS Next Pro, while keeping their slim playoff hopes alive.
The result also secured an unbeaten record against NYCFC II, going 1-0-2 this year.
Orlando has just six matches left on the season, with four of them being held at home in Kissimmee. Currently, they sit 10 points back of fourth, the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Lynn also sits second in the leagues scoring records, just behind Columbus’ Jacen Russel-Rowe.
For more up-to-date stories, follow the Soccer Journal on Twitter: @OSJSoccer