The Houston Dash earned their first point of the 2019 NWSL season in a 1-1 draw against Reign FC at BBVA Compass Stadium this evening.
Dash forward Nichelle Prince gave Houston the lead early in the first half when she pressured the Reign backline pursing a backpass from Allie Long in the 10th minute. The Canadian international beat Reign FC goalkeeper Michelle Betos with a shot to the far post for her first goal of the season.
Reign FC equalized in the 58th minute after forward Darian Jenkins’s effort deflected off a Dash defender at the near post. Houston goalkeeper Jane Campbell made a valiant effort to shift her momentum toward the ball, but could not get to the bottom corner in time to deny the equalizer.
As the game inched towards the final whistle, Campbell had the save of the night blocking a penalty kick from Reign FC forward Jodie Taylor. That was Campbell’s fourth penalty kick save in the league, the second most in NWSL history.
Under Clarkson, the Dash displayed a high line that pushed forward for most of the game. Dash forward Rachel Daly came close to the opponent’s goal at the 13th minute after her effort deflected off a Reign FC defender.
Three minutes later, the team’s 2018 Golden Boot winner tested her luck again by striking a ball that came from Dash midfielderChristine Nairn, but her effort was handled by Betos.
The Dash remained strong defensively as Campbell had her first save of the day at the 15th minute, blocking a shot that was curling inside the upper-right crossbar from the Reign FC defender Celia Jimenez.
At the 44th minute, Daly served Prince a floater that was blocked by a Reign FC defender, giving Price her second shot on goal of the day.
With five minutes left in the first half, Daly received a ball that put her in a one-on-one situation against Betos, forcing a save for the second time in the first half.
As the Dash continued to push forward, Dash forward Kealia Ohai came close to the opponent’s left post with a shot in the 65th minute.
Ten minutes later, Dash midfielder Sofia Huerta took a strike from outside the box that bounced off the crossbar.
Houston Dash 1-1 Reign FC
NWSL Regular Season, Week 1
Sunday, March 14, 2019
BBVA Compass Stadium – Houston, Texas
HOU: Nichelle Prince 1 (unassisted), 10
RFC: Darian Jenkins 1 (unassisted) 58
Houston Dash: Jane Campbell; Taylor Comeau, Clare Polkinghorne, Amber Brooks, Allysha Chapman; Sophie Schmidt, Nairn, Huerta; Nichelle Prince (Haley Hanson 74), Rachel Daly, Kealia Ohai © (Veronica Latsko 74)
Substitutes not used: Bianca Henninger, Lindsey Agnew, Cece Kizer, Kriste Mewis, Ally Prisock
Total shots: 16 (Rachel Daly 4); Shots on goal: 8 (Rachel Daly 3); Fouls: 9 (Amber Brooks, Allysha Chapman and Sophie Schmidt tied with 2); Offside: 0; Corner kicks: 4 (Sophia Huerta 3); Saves: 1 (Jane Campbell)
Reign FC: Michelle Betos; Theresa Nielsen, Celia Jimenez, Lauren Barnes ©, Megan Oyster (Kristen McNabb 40); Darian Jenkins (Bethany Balcer 86), Morgan Andrews; Shea Groom, Allie Long, Jasmyne Spencer (Ellise Kellond-Knight 26), Jodie Taylor
Substitutes not used: Rumi Utsugi, Christen Westphal, Jaycie Johnson, Lydia Williams
Total shots: 9 (Shea Groom 3); Shots on goal: 2 (Darian Jenkins and Jodie Taylor tied with 1); Fouls: 10 (Darian Jenkins 3); Offside: 6 (Jodie Taylor 4); Corner kicks: 4 (Morgan Andrews 3); Saves: 7 (Michelle Betos 7)
HOU: Sophie Schmidt (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 67
Referee: Karen Abt
Assistant Referee 1: Deleana Quan
Assistant Referee 2: Jeremy Weed
Fourth Official: Wilfredo Mejia
Weather: Sunny, 73 degrees