Washington Spirit fall to Seattle Reign FC when Reign forward Sydney Leroux scored her first goal of the 2014 NWSL season in a 2-1 come from behind win on Saturday.
The Reign were unchanged from the side that beat Sky Blue FC 2-0 on Wednesday night, while the Spirit made several changes from its 1-0 win over Chicago last Saturday.
Jodie Taylor, Robyn Gayle, Christine Nairn and Crystal Dunn all re-entered the starting lineup – making it the same lineup that started the last time the Spirit played the Reign in a 3-1 away loss.
The first 20 minutes of the match showed two teams that wanted to get the ball down and play, though neither team found the ideal rhythm.
Once the game settled down, the Reign had the majority of possession, mostly in the Spirit’s defensive third.
Ellie Reed had what seemed to be the best chance of the half in the 40th minute, when she whipped in a cross to a fully extended Sydney Leroux who just got the outside of her foot on a the volley. The shot was on target, but Spirit goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris was well up to the task.
With several big saves, Harris led the Spirit to halftime with a clean sheet.
The only change to start the second half was Spirit midfielder Veronica Perez coming on for Yael Averbuch.
In the 46th minute, a cheeky back heel flick from Dunn released Taylor in behind the Reign defense resulting in a Hope Solo save that went out for a corner kick.
In the 53rd minute, defender Ali Krieger get on the score sheet for the first time this season. A scramble in the box saw the ball pop out to Krieger who had two shots on goal, the first one was saved and the second one was a well-placed left-footed shot over Solo to put the Spirit up 1-0.
The 4,667 fans in attendance at the Maryland SoccerPlex didn’t have to wait long for more action. In the next minute, the Reign equalized with a Jessica Fishlock goal, tying the game at 1-1.