The Kansas City Current, after a first-round victory in the quarterfinal round NWSL playoffs in Houston last Sunday, traveled to Seattle to face the OL Reign at Lumen Field with a trip to the NWSL Championship on the line.
An early goal in the first half gave the Current the lead after rookie Alex Loera found the back of the net. In the fourth minute, with pressure in the box as Cece Kizer dribbled, and the OL Reign defense scrambled to clear the ball away, the ball landed by Loera who was able to take a shot to the bottom left corner of the goal. Loera’s goal is now the fastest playoff goal scored by an away team in league history.
.@alexisaloera REALLY SAID SEND IT ‼️ pic.twitter.com/3He2H9G4jY— KC Current (@thekccurrent) October 23, 2022
That @alexisaloera goal for @thekccurrent was the fastest playoff goal scored by an away team in league history.#TealRising | #NWSL pic.twitter.com/4SCV4OTJuJ— National Women’s Soccer League (@NWSL) October 24, 2022
But the OL Reign immediately began to bring the pressure and dominated the majority of the first half. Goalkeeper AD Franch made 4 saves in the first half to keep the Current with the 1-0 lead.
The OL Reign pressure continued in the second half, with Franch again making crucial stops to keep that tight 1-0 lead for the Current.
Offside or not, @ADizzle23 wasn't taking any chances @thekccurrent | #TealRising pic.twitter.com/d7sVag6toa— National Women’s Soccer League (@NWSL) October 24, 2022
Kansas City did everything they could to keep the Reign pressure at bay, including shifting to a 5-back defensive line. They would get a sigh of relief when Kristen Hamilton extended the lead to 2-0 in the 63’ minute.
WHAT A STRIKE by @khamilton17 to extend the lead!@thekccurrent | #TealRising pic.twitter.com/owNgvWOZAf— National Women’s Soccer League (@NWSL) October 24, 2022
The goal would make it impossible for the Reign to pull a comeback. Kansas City would advance to the NWSL Championship, completing quite the turnaround after finishing at the bottom of the NWSL standings in 2021.
The Kansas City Current are championship bound! They will face Portland Thorns FC at Audi Field on Saturday, October 29.— Cindy Lara (@cinderL9) October 24, 2022
What a turnaround for this franchise after finishing last place in 2021. #TealRising