Match Recap: Courage Short of Houston Dash
CARY, NC (June 19, 2022) — North Carolina Courage missed the Houston Dash on Sunday afternoon, 4-3. The match featured goals from Courage midfielder Denise O’Sullivan, Diana Ordoñez and Debinha. The North Carolina Football Club also celebrated Juneteenth this weekend, hosting two days of pregame festivals that hosted and promoted local Black-owned businesses, live music, artists and more. Courage players wore special, player-designed warm-up tops, recognizing the freedom, power and importance of the black community.
Courage got off to a dominating start in Sunday’s outing with a golazo from midfielder Denise O’Sullivan. The Ireland international received the ball from outside the box and took a beat before making a play to bring the ball to the net, and ended up sending a laser of a shot in contention for the goal of the year just ahead of Dash sitter Jane Campbell. and in the upper 90s. The goal was O’Sullivan’s first regular season goal for Courage and her first regular season goal since 2016 when she played for the Dash. His only Courage goal to date came in the 2017 semi-final against Chicago.
The Dash responded nine minutes later when María Sánchez slid the ball past Courage goalkeeper Casey Murphy.
While the first half ended with one goal apiece, eventually Dash came back from the break and overpowered Courage, scoring three goals in less than 10 minutes to give them a 4-1 early lead. of the second half. A pair of goals from Elizabeth Eddy and a blast from Nichelle Prince gave the visitors a nice head start.
“We didn’t show up for eight minutes, and I’ve never seen this before,” head coach Sean Nahas said. “But we reacted well, we gave ourselves chances and we could have gotten the equaliser. We made a change in formation just to pin them down… But I was proud of the group for the way they did. answered. There is a lot to be learned from this [performance] for sure.”
Those changes after Houston’s lead took shape in the form of Diana Ordoñez, who scored her third goal of the season, this time on a classic fly ball from defender Carson Pickett. The ball found a waiting Ordoñez who fired her shot into Campbell’s legs.
Two minutes later, Courage midfielder Debinha slipped a ball past Campbell to bring the game almost to a goal. In the end, Houston prevailed, ending Courage’s three-game unbeaten streak.
Immediately after the game, the club recognized defensemen Carson Pickett and Jaelene Daniels, who both recently played in their 100th NWSL regular season game. Daniels recorded his milestone on April 29 at Angel City FC, and Pickett recorded his at home on May 18 against Orlando Pride. Sunday’s game also marked Casey Murphy’s 50th regular season NWSL appearance.
Next: North Carolina Courage hit the road again, making the trip to the Pacific Northwest to take on OL Reign FC on July 1 at 10 p.m. ET. The match will be streamed live on Paramount+, WRAL Sports+ (locally) and Twitch (internationally).
- Denise O’Sullivan scored her first NWSL regular season goal.
- Casey Murphy made his 50th regular season appearance in the NWSL.
- Eight Courage players will now depart for international duty: Denise O’Sullivan (IRE), Havana Solaun (JAM), Katie Bowen (NZ), Diana Ordoñez (MEX), Debinha and Kerolin Nicoli (BRA), Carson Pickett and Casey Murphy ( UNITED STATES)
The score of the box:
CN (4-4-2): Casey Murphy, Carson Pickett, Abby Erceg, Kaleigh Kurtz, Merritt Mathias (Ryan Williams — 67′), Denise O’Sullivan, Malia Berkely (Jaelene Daniels — 67′), Kerolin, Debinha, Brianna Pinto (Frankie Tagliaferri — 90+1 ‘), Diana Ordonez
Unused subtitles: Katelyn Rowland, Jorian Baucom, Katie Bowen, Emily Gray, Brittany Ratcliffe, Rylee Baisden, Meredith Speck
HOO: Jane Campbell, Allysha Chapman, Katie Naughton, Ally Prisock, Elizabeth Eddy, Marisa Viggiano, Sophie Schmidt, Haley Hanson, Shea Groom (Joelle Anderson — 80′), María Sánchez (Michaela Abam — 89′), Nichelle Prince (Cali Farquharson — 70′)
Unused subtitles: Ella Dederick, Julia Ashley, Emily Ogle, Ryan Gareis, Natalie Jacobs
NC: Denise O’Sullivan — 6′; Diana Ordonez — 57′; Debinha — 59′
HOU: María Sánchez — 15′; Elisabeth Eddy — 47′, 50′; Nichelle Prince — 51′
HOU: María Sánchez — 76′