After a week off, the Kansas City Current (5-4-3, 18 pts., T-4th place) hosted the Orlando Pride (3-5-4, 13 pts., 8th place) at Children’s Mercy Park. Both teams came into this game with unbeaten streaks of their own: The Current with a seven-game unbeaten streak, and the Pride with three games without a loss.
How the Current lined up
With Kristen Edmonds added to the injury report this morning due to COVID protocol, head coach Matt Potter made adjustments to the starting 11, going with a 3-1-4-2, with Addisyn Merrick, Elizabeth Ball, and Victoria Pickett in the backline, Taylor Leach in the defensive mid spot. Kate Del Fava, Lo’Leau LaBonta, Desiree Scott, and Hallie Mace in the midfield, and Cece Kizer and Kristen Hamilton in the attack. French international signing, Claire Lavogez, began on the bench.
The Current’s best chance came early in the 15’ with a Hamilton shot in the center of the box, which was saved. In the same minute, LaBonta took a shot from outside the box only to miss to the left. But it would be Orlando who would strike first. A cross from Erika Tymrak to the center of the box found the Celia Jiménez who headed it in for the 1-0 lead.
Going into halftime, the Current appeared to be the better side. The team struggled in creating chances in the final third, however, but the Current tend to be a second half team and would need to respond to Orlando’s first half goal.
The Pride would make it tougher, though, and extended their lead to 2 goals after goalkeeper AD Franch and Elizabeth Ball went in for a challenge at the same time right at the beginning of halftime. Franch would stay down. Thinking there would be a call, the defense let down their guard, and Orlando capitalized on the open net.
Down 2-0, Kansas City would need to make changes, beginning with bringing Elyse Bennett in for Taylor Leach, focusing more on the attack with 3 forwards (Bennett, Kizer, Hamilton). It would make a difference. In the 57th minute, Mace would make a quick pass to Bennett, who sprinted up the flank into the Orlando box, taking in for a shot, and Kansas City’s first goal of the game.
Trailing 2-1, the Current continued the pressure. In the 82nd minute, LaBonta sent a long pass to Kizer, who was making a run into the box. Kizer was able to beat Orlando goalkeeper, Erin McLeod, to the ball, and score off a bouncing ball to tie the game.
With five minutes of added time, the Current attempted to get their fourth consecutive win, but would have to settle for a point after a 2-2 draw. Kansas City extended its unbeaten streak to eight games in front of 7,192 fans.