FC Kansas City continued their home unbeaten streak when they drew the Settle Reign 2-2 Saturday. A draw was a fair result as both teams seemed to be evenly matched with moments of great play as well as moments they would rather forget.
The weather may have played into the initial slowness of the match and an impending storm with spectacular lightening capped off late goals from both teams.
The Blues Alexa Newfield started the scoring in the 23rd minute when Erika Tymrak chipped the ball from the side of the box. Newfield headed the ball on goal and despite Seattle keeper Haley Kopemeyer getting a hand on it; she could not keep it out of the net. This was Newfields second goal of the year.
The Reign picked up the pressure and after a corner kick was not cleared out far enough, Megan Rapinoe looped a ball into the box. Possibly expecting a Seattle player to redirect the shot, Nicole Barnhart un-customarily misplayed the shot and Seattle scored in the 33rd minute.
Seattle almost took the lead at the 73rd minute mark but saves from Barnhart were followed up by Becky Sauerbrunn and Yael Averbuch both stopping shots to maintain the tie.
The match stayed even until the 81st minute when Christine Nairn broke towards the Blues goal. Despite efforts by Averbuch to slow her down Nairn was able to pick out Nahomi Kawasumi on the far side of the box. Brittany Taylor was streaking back and over committed in effort to stop the chance. Kawasumi took a touch the opposite direction and from close range was able to beat Barnhart.
“I felt that we stepped up a lot harder in the second half,” FCKC head coach Vlatko Andonvski told reporters after the match. “We pretty much cutoff everything up until the goal. We were comfortable and then there was the one breakdown that we obviously did not defend well in a 1v1 situation.”
The Blues renewed their efforts to level the score and was able to break through just a couple minutes later.
FC Kansas City earned a corner which was taken by Yael Averbuch. The corner was intercepted by the Reign but this time they were the ones that were unable to clear it out of danger.
A couple of shot attempts by the Blues and Averbuch gained control of the ball, picked out a spot and drilled the ball through the defense. Maegen Kelly streaked past her defenders and headed the ball from point-blank range past a helpless Kopmeyer to tie the game at 2-2. It was Kelly’s first goal of her NWSL career.
“Yael played a ball in from the outside and we’ve been practicing getting in front of the defenders when running in to goal so that is what I did and headed the ball into goal,” Kelly explained.
“Just glad I could help and help our team tie, of course we were looking to win but it’s just a great feeling to be able to help the girls out and be an impact on the team,” Kelly added.