The Kansas City Current (5-4-4, 19pts, 6th place) began August with a road trip against league-leading San Diego Wave FC (7-3-4, 25pts, 1st place). The Current, with an unbeaten streak of 8, faced a San Diego team that had lost just one match in the last two months. Most recently, the Wave beat the Chicago Red Stars 1-0 on July 30.
But Kansas City would score two goals in the first half and hold off a Wave rally late in the second half to win 2-1.
Notes: Kristen Edmonds and Alex Loera return after missing last week. Elyse Bennett also starting on the bench as Kristen Hamilton and Cece Kizer led the attack. Also, Claire Lavogez made her KC Current debut in the 78th minute, subbing for Lo’eau LaBonta.
The Current had a better start in San Diego, moving the ball quicker and looking more organized. It led to an opportunity early in the 8th minute for Lo’eau LaBonta to take a shot from the center of the box, but it was saved by goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan. Four minutes later, Kate Del Fava found herself with an opportunity after a pass from Hailie Mace, but she was unable to connect.
As San Diego mounted some pressure, Kansas City countered and scored the leading goal in the 27th minute. Kristen Hamilton sent a long pass to Cece Kizer who was making a run on the right side. Taking the ball past defender Naomi Girma, Kizer took a shot to score her fourth goal in six games.
In the 39th minute, the Current extended their lead to 2-0 as Hailie Mace, left unmarked and with enough space to take a shot, scored from outside the box to the top right corner.
The Current had an opportunity to make it 3-0 after Kansas City was awarded a penalty kick in the 67th minute. Elyse Bennett was taken down in the penalty area. As usual, it was LaBonta who took the penalty kick, but Sheridan, again, made an important save, and the game remained 2-0.
San Diego would attempt a late second half rally, though, pressuring the Kansas City defense. They did manage a goal in the 88th minute as Amirah Ali took a shot from the center of the box, catching AD Franch and the KC defense off guard.
Kansas City held on until the end, winning 2-1, and extending their unbeaten streak to nine, and becoming a real playoff contender.