The Houston Dash dropped their second straight match in a 1-0 loss to the Orlando Pride at BBVA Compass Stadium on Friday night.
After a tightly contested first 80 minutes, Orlando defender Kristen Edmonds received a cross-field pass from Lianne Sanderson and lined up a shot from 20 yards. The ball grazed off the fingertips of Houston goalkeeper Lydia Williams at full stretch, and crashed off the underside of the crossbar for what would be the winning goal, and Edmonds’ first career tally in the NWSL.
The Dash were on the front foot early, earning a corner kick within the first minute of the match and testing the Orlando defense with crosses into the box. Houston had their first clear cut chance a quarter of an hour into the match, as Andressa led Janine Beckie behind the Pride defense and into the penalty area with a through ball. However, defender Josée Bélanger muscled Beckie off the ball in a clean challenge before the forward could get an attempt on goal. Kealia Ohai followed up four minutes later with a shot that hit the outside netting after taking on her defender one-on-one.
Orlando nearly had disaster strike in the 37th minute, as a cross from Dash forward Rachel Daly intended for Ohai was cut out by Bélanger and whizzed just feet away from the post of her own goal.
Houston again came close at the hour mark, as a recycled corner kick was put back into the box by Andressa. Fellow Brazilian Poliana rose above her defender to head the ball back across the face of goal, but it was off target and no runners were available for the tap-in at the back post.
Second half substitute Stephanie Ochs forced a save from Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris in the 78th minute, receiving a ball from Andressa on a counter attack on the right side. Ochs elected to go for power with her shot, but it was right at Harris to parry away.
Orlando came close to opening the scoring two minutes later, as forward Alex Morgan got free on the back post to get a head on a free kick from Steph Catley. The header looked to be on frame and beat a diving Williams, but defender Allysha Chapman was in position on the goal line to clear the attempt.
The Dash brought on an extra midfielder in Amber Brooks after the goal as they chased for an equalizer. Brooks found herself with space 25 yards from goal and unleashed a shot, but again it was right at Harris. Houston got one final chance in added time with a free kick on the right flank, but the set piece didn’t amount to anything as the final whistle blew.
The Pride took their second win against the Dash, having earned a 3-1 result in Orlando on April 23. The teams will meet two more times this season, at Camping World Stadium on June 23 and again at BBVA Compass Stadium on September 3.
The Dash will host the Washington Spirit next Friday at BBVA Compass Stadium. Orlando travels next to face FC Kansas City at Swope Park on Saturday, May 28, in the second of four consecutive road games.