Orlando Pride (6-8-0, 18 points) concludes a two-game road trip on Sunday evening when it travels to face the Boston Breakers (1-11-1, 4 points) at 6 p.m. ET. The match will be the second and final meeting of the season between the two teams, who met just three weeks prior at Camping World Stadium.
Sunday’s game will be streamed at orlando-pride.com/live or can be followed on Twitter through the Pride’s official account, @ORLPride.
“As we saw with the Boston game [in Orlando], everything was very tight. I think what we’ve got in this game is a very mobile frontline that can cause their defense some problems if we can get the proper service to our strikers,” Pride Head Coach Tom Sermanni said. “[Boston’s] gotten into a run where they haven’t won a game for a long time so it’s important for us not to relieve any of the pressure by giving away anything, particularly early in the game. We just need to play the way we’ve been trying to play all year.”
The first meeting between the two clubs proved to be one of the most exciting matches of the National Women’s Soccer League season so far, as the Pride rallied from a one-goal deficit to score two goals in the final three minutes – earning a thrilling 2-1 win over Boston on July 10.
Kristen Edmonds tallied the first multi-goal game in Orlando history, with goals in the 90 and 93+ minutes, for the Club’s first-ever comeback win. The third-year pro scored on a clinical free kick, before taking advantage of a perfectly weighted pass from Leah Fortune to chip in the game-winning goal in stoppage time.
Mollie Pathman scored the Breakers goal in the fifth minute. The forward, however, retired from professional soccer just a few days later, playing her final career game on July 17. The Breakers will also be without forward Stephanie McCaffery, who was traded to the Chicago Red Stars last week.
The Pride look to rebound after suffering its toughest defeat of the season last Saturday, falling 5-2 to Seattle Reign FC. Despite goals from Jasmyne Spencer and Edmonds, the Pride were not able to recover from a first half, two-goal deficit. Goalkeeper Kaitlyn Savage and the defense faced 23 shots from the Reign, with Savage making a season-high eight saves in her hometown.
Boston, who currently sits at the bottom of the NWSL standings, had a bye during Week 14, last playing to a 3-2 loss to Sky Blue FC on July 17. It was the first two-goal game of the season for the Breakers offense, with Angela Salem and Julie King scoring in the match.
In addition to the six players missing due to international duty, the Pride will also play without Fortune who departed the team this week for a corporate opportunity. For the fourth straight match, Orlando will call up its four amateur players: forwards Sierra Lelii and Allie Wisner, midfielder Kim Reynolds and goalkeeper Megan Dorsey.
The match will be the final game the Pride play before the conclusion of the 2016 Summer Olympics and the last before the six international players return to the Club.
“If you said ‘you’ve got four games and you can go 50/50’, I think that would be a good result. If we can get a result this weekend, we’re right back in the mix for the top four,” Sermanni added. “If we get everybody back fit and healthy after the Olympics, then we’re in a really good position to make a run at the finals.”
After Sunday, the Pride will face a 26-day break before their next game due to the Rio Olympics. The entire National Women’s Soccer League will be on hiatus from August 1-25 as the Summer Games are underway, with the Pride returning to action on August 26 when they host the Washington Spirit at 7:30 p.m. ET at Camping World Stadium.
Tickets to all Pride home games are available at orlando-pride.com or by phone at 855-ORL-CITY.