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KC NWSL comes home with their first point in Challenge Cup

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Rodriguez goal helps KC to their first point against strong Chicago side

Amy Rodriguez celebrates goal
NWSL / ISI Photos

Kansas City NWSL returns home with their first point as they drew 1-1 with the Chicago Red Stars Wednesday. While Chicago dominated many of the stats, neither team was able to score for most of the match until the last ten minutes saw both teams get a goal.

“Pleased with the effort of our team, disappointed with the result,” KC NWSL head coach Huw Williams told media post game. “We came here with the view to get three points and to continue to compete in this Challenge Cup. We didn’t get the three points, not sure we deserved three points but I do know that we battled, we worked hard.”

“As a coach I don’t know if I can ask for players to give more than their best but I will,” Williams added.

Chicago was the better team through the first half, controlling possession and limiting Kansas City to a single off target shot. Adjustments at half-time led to Kansas City opening it up more and a balanced but still defensive game.

“The first half we got hammered, let’s be honest,” Williams admitted. “They were way better than we were in the first half. You’ve got to give credit to them as well. That’s a good team we just played against. They’ve been together a long time, that’s a midfield that has played for a long time together, quality all the way through that team. It took a while for us to adjust to the speed, to the tempo. They were trapping us, especially on the left hand side and we weren’t dealing with it well enough. We tweaked a couple things at half time positionally and that helped us to maintain possession a little but better in the second half. I thought we did a lot better in the second half.”

The only goal scorer so far for KC NWSL led the way again as Amy Rodriguez got the games first goal in the 80th minute. Keeper Abby Smith launched the ball long and Chicago defender was a little too slow to control the ball.

Rodriguez forced past the Red Stars Sarah Gordon. Rodriguez shot it past Alyssa Naeher to give Kansas City the lead. It was the first lead KC NWSL has had in their short history and that lead was short as well.

Chicago quickly responded when Arin Wright popped a ball over the top to Katie Johnson who was in behind the Kansas City defense. Johnson slid the ball past KC keeper Abby Smith to level the match at 1-1 in the 82nd minute.

Both teams were going for the win to stave off elimination in the Challenge Cup but a Portland Thorns win over the Reign has already eliminated the rest of the bracket so all remaining games will be for pride and to fine tune teams for the regular season.

Discipline

25’ CHI Danielle Colaprico (Yellow)

66’ CHI Julie Ertz (Yellow)

85’ KC Gaby Vincent

Scoring

80’ KC Rodriguez (Smith)

82’ CHI Johnson (Wright)

Lineups:

Chicago Red Stars: Naeher, Davisdon, Short, Wright, Gorden, DiBernardo (83’Woldmoe), Brian (71’ Doniak), Ertz, Colaprico (83’ Stanton), Pugh (35’ Johnson), Ohai (71’ Hill)

Substitutes Not Used: Goralski, Leubbert, Miller, Sharples,

Kansas City: Smith, Corsie, Bowen, Del Fava, Maemone, Scott, Vincent, LaBonta (75’ Logarzo), Pickett (90’+4 Larroquette), Rodriguez, Vasconcelos (52’ Listro)

Substitutes Not Used: Miramontez, Barnhart, Leach, Nolf, Nick, McCain