Orlando Pride picked up its first win of the NWSL preseason on Saturday afternoon, defeating the University of Central Florida 3-0 at UCF Track and Soccer Complex. Sydney Leroux opened the match with two first-half goals before Christine Nairn capped off the scoring in the second half. The match was the second of three preseason games the Pride will play before their March 24 season opener against Utah Royals FC.
“I was pleased. I thought we showed a lot more cohesion today, moved the ball well, kept possession well, created chances and scored goals,” Pride Head Coach Tom Sermanni said. “So, again, still very early in the preseason but I was pleased with what I saw.”
The two Orlando-based sides played a shortened match on Saturday with two, 25-minute halves. Leroux got the Pride on the board first in the 14th minute, capitalizing on a pass from Dani Weatherholt. Weatherholt sacrificed her body between two Knight defenders, finding Leroux on a right-sided run to go in unmarked on the goalkeeper.
Seven minutes later, Leroux put in her third goal of the preseason after Christine Nairn faked a shot, instead sending the forward down the left side of the box for an easy tap-in around the ‘keeper.
Nairn got one for herself shortly into the second half, powering a left-footed set piece in the 33rd minute.
The Pride will finish preseason play on March 8, traveling to face the University of South Florida at 7 p.m. ET
Tickets for the 2018 Pride season are currently on sale at orlando-pride.com/tickets or by calling (855) ORL-CITY.
Match: University of Central Florida vs. Orlando Pride
Date: March 3, 2018
Venue: UCF Track & Soccer Complex
Kickoff: 3 p.m. ET
Team 1 2 F
UCF 0 0 0
Orlando 2 1 3
ORL – Sydney Leroux (Dani Weatherholt) 14’
ORL – Sydney Leroux (Christine Nairn) 21’
ORL – Christine Nairn 33’
Orlando Lineup: Haley Kopmeyer; Bridget Callahan* (Kayla Adamek* 45’), Ali Krieger, Toni Pressley, Carson Pickett; Dani Weatherholt, Danica Evans (Jessica Hamrick* 45’), Christine Nairn; Trudi Carter* (Julia Moore* 45’), Sydney Leroux, Chioma Ubogagu
Substitutes Not Used: None