After two away games with less than optimal results, FC Kansas City returned to Swope Soccer Village to face the Orlando Pride. The Pride had to make their first substitution in just the 4th minute of the game, when defined Monica Hickmann Alvie's went down with an injury and they were forced to bring in Dani Weatherholt to fill her spot. A new face in the Pride’s lineup, Marta, put pressure on the Blues defense starting early in the game. She had a couple of runs towards goal during the first half but came up empty. Newcomer for FCKC, forward Brittany Ratcliffe, continually put pressure on Orlando’s defense for the entirety of time in the game. Although there was a lot of back and forth play during the first half, neither team was able to put the ball into the back of the net and they would go into halftime tied at 0-0.
The second half started with an early corner kick for FCKC, won by forward (and birthday girl) Sydney Leroux Dwyer. The hearts of every FC Kansas City fan dropped when in the 73rd minute Marta put a ball past goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart. They then regained some hope for a victory in the 85th minute when, after a beautiful free kick taken by defender Yael Averbuch, the ball bounced freely in the box until midfielder Erika Tymrak was able to put it past Ashlyn Harris for an FC Kansas City goal. Despite 5 minutes of added time at the end of the second half, both teams were able to hang on and the game would end in a 1-1 draw.
The Blues still seem like they haven’t quite recovered from the injury of Amy Rodriguez during the first game of the season. Although they have regained players like Desiree Scott, they seem to be missing the spark that they came out with that first game. Hopefully, as the team continues to adapt to Amy’s absence and the less-seasoned forwards step in to fill her boots, they will have an easier time making goals.
The Blues next game will return home next Saturday, May 13th, to face the Portland Thorns.