Orlando Pride began preseason play on Wednesday night, traveling to face Florida State University at Seminole Soccer Complex in Tallahassee. Forward Sydney Leroux and trialist Trudi Carter scored for the Pride, who fell 3-2 to the Seminoles.
The Pride, who currently have nine players on international duty, started the match with 10 rostered players, with preseason invitee Bridget Callahan the only trialist in the starting XI. Halfway through the match, Orlando Pride Head Coach Tom Sermanni replaced eight of his starters with trialists. The team played the remainder of the match with the same personnel setup, rotating two rostered players on the field and Haley Kopmeyer consistent between the pipes.
“I was happy with the game, it was always going to be difficult. Having nine players away on international duty has really decimated the squad a little bit,” Sermanni said. “We put a team out tonight with players playing all sorts of positions, players that haven’t played with each other and players that just got to meet each other before the game. So, considering all of those things, I was really happy with the effort and how the team went and pleased that we gave Florida State competition.”
Playing three, 30-minute periods, the Pride got on the board first eight minutes into the first stanza. Forward Sydney Leroux found the back of the net with a right-footed shot, creating a solo opportunity at the top of the 18-yard box.
The Seminoles pulled things even early in the second period after a handball call in the box, leading to a penalty kick goal from Deyna Castellanos. The home team took the lead in the 49th minute, after Kaycie Tillman intercepted a pass from the Orlando backline and finished on a breakaway.
Carter, out of the University of South Florida, brought the game to 2-2 in the 80th minute, adding Orlando’s second goal of the evening with a blast from 25-yards out.
Castellanos made it a brace late in the game, scoring in the 89th minute.
The Pride will play their second preseason game in just three days, facing in-town side University of Central Florida on Saturday in a closed-door match.
Orlando begins the 2018 NWSL regular season on March 24, hosting Utah Royals FC at Orlando City Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. ET. Tickets are currently available at orlando-pride.com/tickets or by calling (855) ORL-CITY.
Match: Florida State University vs. Orlando Pride
Date: February 28, 2018
Venue: Seminole Soccer Complex
Kickoff: 6 p.m. ET
ORL – Sydney Leroux 8’
FSU – Deyna Castellanos (PK) 33’
FSU – Kaycie Tillman 49’
ORL – Trudi Carter 80’
FSU – Deyna Castellanos 89'
Orlando Lineup: Haley Kopmeyer; Bridget Callahan* (Claire Oates* 31’), Ali Krieger (Toni Pressley 61’, Carson Pickett 76’), Toni Pressley (Sarah Inserra*), Carson Pickett (Kayla Adamek*); Dani Weatherholt (Bridget Callahan* 48’, Chioma Ubogagu 76’), Danica Evans (Dani Weatherholt 61’), Christine Nairn (Jessica Hamrick*); Rachel Hill (Hikaru Murakami* 48’), Sydney Leroux (Trudi Carter*), Chioma Ubogagu (Julia Moore*)
Substitutes Not Used: Taylor Fox* (Orlando Pride DA); Ansley Frazier* (Orlando Pride DA), Ellie Moreno* (Orlando Pride DA)